Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Herndon Campmeeting!

During the 10 days of July 18-27, we had the opportunity to serve as "Missionaries in Residence" at Herndon Campmeeting about an hour northwest of home. Above you can see the cross and the sign above the front of the tabernacle--it's kind of a throw-back to campmeetings gone by.

So what do missionaries in residence do at a campmeeting? Well, this is what we did. During each of the evening worship services, we had a five minute "missions moment" to share about ourselves, Spain, and our potential ministry. One evening B.J. shared with the children's program about how Spaniards need Christ. Throughout the weekdays, while Rachel returned home to work, B.J. spent time with the teenagers in their Bible studies, games, and other activities. Outside of being the "official missionaries," we spent significant time building relationships with people, which happened a good bit around our meal times (B.J.'s on a diet now to recover his former figure). It was a great opportunity both to minister and to be ministered to!
The Teenagers at Herndon 2008:

B.J. shares a "Missions Moment":

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The Good Samaritan Rehab Center

Here's a bit of exciting news regarding ECMI's rehabilitation work in Spain's Cordoba province, as it was conveyed to us by Rachel's dad, Ron Anderson:

The Good Samaritan Association was awarded the "Encina del valle de los Pedroches" award this past week. This award, according to Francis Arjona (the founder of the Good Samaritan Drug & Alcohol Rehabilitation Center), is the most prestigious award that is given in the Pedroches Valley. The Valley, located in the northern section of the Cordoba province of Spain, is populated with 17 municipalities. The award was received by Francis, who represented the Association and the faithful team of workers and missionaries connected with it. The ceremony started in the town hall and ended up in a public ceremony in the famous bull ring. The Good Sam. Association was only one of several recipients who received an award that evening. The event was well attended by mayors, dignitaries, local citizens, etc. The media was represented by a TV station, 5 radio stations and newspaper reporters. Francis said, "I never dreamed that one day we would get this award and that it would give us the opportunity to tell everyone in the entire area why we had come to the Pedroches Valley to serve as we do." In his acceptance speech, Francis said. “We are here as modern day Samaritans… We are not better than anyone else by doing this…We only intend to peach and live a life which reflects God’s love... We have a relationship with God and not a mere religion.” One of the initial outcomes of the event has been that a very prestigious local poet and writer, which also received an award, accepted Francis’s invitation to "talk further about these things". The ECM vision for Cordoba continues to be very much alive. As Francis puts it. "Our vision is to see a church planted in each of the towns of over 5000 population." It sure is nice to get such a prestigious award that lifts the level of awareness of who we are so that we are not rejected as people before we have a chance to share the message of Hope. To God be the Glory.

To learn more about the Center, check out http://www.buensam.org.uk/ or http://www.buensam.org/ (in Spanish).

The award ceremony at the bull ring

Francis receives the award

Right to Left: Raul Vazquez (Director of the Center), Mayor, Francis Arjona

Monday, July 7, 2008

PEI Getaway

This is a few weeks late, but we thought we would share a few of our photos from our Prince Edward Island anniversary getaway. It was a much-needed time of relaxation and enjoyment for us, and it was a dream come true for Rachel, who had always wanted to visit PEI because of her love for the Anne of Green Gables stories by L.M. Montgomery, the most famous native of PEI. Click above to see a handful of our photos!