We leave on Wednesday, June 18 for Rwanda, Africa. God has assembled a team of missionaries from Arizona, California, Texas, Alabama, and Florida to do His work in Rural Rwanda, partnering with e3 partners and their incredible team of trainers, translators, nationals, and local churches. I'll be posting as frequently as I can from Rwanda - can't always guarantee the internet will be operational in the area we'll be staying. We took this picture right outside of Ruhengeri which is where we'll be working again. Rwanda is incredibly beautiful and lush and green. It rains every afternoon in this region. This is actually a golf course at a lodge near the volcano area where people climb up to see the gorillas in their natural habitat. We went to the lodge for our final dinner together as a team before leaving for the USA in the morning. I believe we were standing on Jack Hanna's porch (he wasn't there) while taking this picture.
When we return from Rwanda, I'll wash my clothes and re-pack them so that I can leave for Romania on July 11. I'll be part of another e3 partners team of 33 missionaries from across the country. This trip is one of 2 training trips necessary in order for me to become a Church Planting Coordinator with e3. Romania has a very small percentage of Evangelicals Christians. There is a fairly large Orthodox influence, but only in a very religious, dutiful way. Although the percentage of Evangelicals is small, Romania still has one of the largest group of Christians in Eastern Europe. Alyssa and I went to Romania with e3 on a missions trip in July 2005. I'm very excited that I'm returning to the same region that we worked in and working with the same 2 mother churches! Here's Alyssa in a massive field of sunflowers - they grow sunflowers, not for the seeds, but for the oil!!
I'll be back on July 19. I'll once again wash my clothes and re-pack them in preparation for our August trip to Burundi, Africa. I'm really excited about this trip because my friend Kelly is going with us!! This will be Dan's second e3 partners mission trip that he plans and executes all on his own! We are actively recruiting for this trip right now...it will be here before we know it! Click HERE to find out more details about the trip and to sign up to join us!!! We are planning on staying at the same, beautiful hotel as last time we were there. It's very close the shore of Lake Tanganyika. Lots of rain here, too. Very lush, tropical paradise juxtaposed with the hustle and bustle of the capital city, Bujumbura.
I must be an optimist, but I'm thinking I'll have time to hit the CA beaches sometime this summer too! That will be a personal mission trip, made up of frozen yogurt with fresh blackberries, ice-cold watermelon, sun-splashed skin, shockingly cold, salty, seaweedy waves, sweeping me off my feet, restoring my tired body, refreshing my California spirit! We used to camp at San Clemente State Beach every summer while growing up. Some of my best childhood memories are of these summery, sunburned, family times. I'm sure my mom needed a vacation by the end of the week after cooking 3 meals a day and sweeping sand out of the tent constantly. Good times!! (I'm wrapped in the blue towel)