General Updates

The 2017 Credo Group


We hit an all-time record of 47 people in our apartment last Thursday. (Check out the floors.) I loose track of the parties and fun we have in our flat, but I am pretty sure we’ve never had 47…although that one New Life/15-intern lunch of 2014 might have been pretty close… The following Tuesday we […]

The Emotions of August


The end of August always brings two feelings. One is pure bliss! Camp season is over; God got us through with great camps, short-term teams, interns, lots of lessons learned along the way, and tons of teenagers with whom we got to share Jesus. In August, schedules slow down. Summer vacation is right around the […]

I Got My Mind Set On You


As a child of the 1980s, this George Harrison song was one of my all-time favorites. But I am realizing its significant spiritual component as this message “setting our minds on” pertains to Jesus Himself. When you commit to being a youth leader – a discipler of the next generation – you are signing yourself […]

Friends Who Go The Distance


“Good morning, August 1st. You have been looming for quite some time now. I’m thankful that you are now in my past.” August 1 was our Year 1 paper deadline for our Fuller program. Honestly, writing a forty-page stab at the first section of a dissertation has been probably the hardest academic thing I have ever […]

How Netflix Documentaries Are Changing My Life


Do you believe that God can speak to you through any means? I was visiting a Fusion rock/pop choir camp a few weeks ago, and our youth pastor, Syava, was leading a 16-person small group(!) (We had that many kids register for both of our church’s local camps with JV, and since evening  program is […]

Walking in the Footsteps of Faith


Just recently, Ben and I were reminiscing about our Lockheed Martin days. As a part of their Leadership Development Program, we had the opportunity to sit in on executive meetings and observe high-level directors and leaders in their sweet spots. They cast vision. They appointed those who are great executors to their teams in order […]

Malenovice, CZ Event Center Fundraising


Recently our Ukraine team has been responsible for covering a week in July in the prayer room. That means finding 24 people per day to cover one hour of on-line interactive prayer, interceding for Josiah Venture and for God’s movement in Central and Eastern Europe. When it is our team’s weeks to cover, I find […]

Celebrating 10 Years of New Life English Camps!


We praise God with our whole hearts for this milestone! Ten summers ago we prepped with our New Life Church team for a “camp of a different kind”. JV Camps are unique, in the sense that they have specific themes, logos, training and strategies, in order to equip local churches to reach the campers all […]

I Love This Town!


Who remembers that line from Ghostbusters? I think it was Winston Zedemore who yelled it as they went out to fight spooks in Manhattan. I can’t agree more. I love this town. Ten years and Lviv hasn’t grown old for even a second. I have found, over the years, that I love reading about the […]

June and July – the fast track


I write on June 30. The last time I was on was May 31st. A month of silence?! This is a good thing. Two weeks were spent on an internet-free, work-free vacation with the kids. The second two weeks were the annual pre-summer ministry scramble with our team before summer short-term teams arrive. Interns are […]

Hot Town, Summer in the City


When I was in grade school, I used to listened to Oldies 104.3 radio station out of Chicago. I loved that Lovin’ Spoonful song “Hot town, summer in the city, back of my neck getting dirty and gritty; been down, isn’t it a pity, doesn’t seem to be a shadow in the city…all along people […]

Saying Good-bye to the 2016-2017 School Year


The kids keep growing up. See them, up in front  – light hair, light-colored clothes. New Milestone! At the JV Spring conference, Marissa was invited to be in the kids program with all the big kids because she is a first grader now. Dylan just finished another year of preschool, and looks forward to going […]

Subject Matter Experts and Jacks of All Trades


Missionaries are people, which means they have good and bad days. On a bad day, you’ll find my mind far, far away, using my MBA to be a good FLDP (finance leadership development program) graduate and SME (subject matter expert) in FMS (financial management systems), like SAP and Hyperion. (I just recalled how much we used […]

JV Conference on Psalm 23


I wrote this in reflection after attending our annual Josiah Venture family spring conference. Our president, Dave Patty, prepared all the teaching for the conference based on shepherding, our Great Shepherd, Jesus, and Psalm 23. He leads me beside still waters.  He prepares a table before me in the presence of my enemies.  I will […]

Reformation 500-Year Anniversary – Live from Wittenberg!


Protestant churches all over the world are gearing up for the celebration of 500 years since Martin Luther hung his 95 theses on this church door to make a statement against the inconsistencies he saw between Scripture and the practices in the church in 1517. Can you imagine? That was FIVE HUNDRED YEARS AGO! And it […]

EXIT Tour Round 2 with New Life!


After two months “off EXIT Tour”, we were back on. Our local church, New Life, in Lviv, where we have served for 10 years(!), was up next in line for an EXIT Tour. They had booked a band out of England, Crossfya, which was the same group that came last year and did a similar project. […]

Dual Language Bible Project


For the past two years I have been team Ukraine’s representative for a dual-language Bible printing project with Josiah Venture. A very large donation was given so that any country where Josiah Venture serves could order 5,000 modern-translation Bibles in a dual language format. This means English plus the national language spoken, for example, Ukrainian. […]

All Staff In a School for Spring17


Recently Ben and I have pushed “All Staff in a School” ministry philosophy. These are two of my schools that I pray for often. “All Staff in a School” is a phrase we came up with, based on our JV President, Dave Patty’s saying of “All Staff on the [Disciple-making] Path”, meaning that every Josiah […]

The Kids Surprise Me Every Day


I have not written in so long about the kids. It is hard to believe that we recently experienced our first ever Spring Break with a school-aged child. It was not a super eventful week, but Marissa is thrilled to “sleep in” (meaning getting up at 6:30), not doing homework (although she still does her […]

Easter and Salvation


Happy Easter from Lviv, Ukraine! We had a wonderful, true holiday weekend. No plans. We went to Thursday and Sunday church services, and we attended a small team dinner on Sunday night, but other than that we had 3 full days of rest. The kids were doing “healthy eating” through the month of April, so […]

Easter Break Reading List


Reading has taken on a new meaning in our household. Besides having the two kids, who are reading more and more every day, including my text messages from my phone and other personal things they should not see…, my perspective on reading has recently changed. After having from November 1-February 15 to read 19 books […]

Never Before Have I Felt So Inspired


Inspire. This was the name of our Josiah Venture Fall Conference back in September 2016. There we were inspired and changed by the stories of the first century Church. Jesus ascends to heaven, and the Apostles and disciples go out and bring Christianity to the ends of the civilized world in one generation after Christ. […]

In Preparation for Easter


Jesus Christ came to seek and to save the lost. 99% of Central and Eastern European teenagers do not follow Christ. Many of them do not even know Him, the Messiah, the Christ – the one who laid down His perfect life so that we might be made right again with God, and live – […]

Two Week Countdown to EXIT


Yesterday we had an organizational meeting about our next EXIT Tour, which starts in two weeks. April 18-21st. I am so excited. This is an incredible project with teenagers. I have blogged much about EXIT since mid February, when we launched the ministry. Also in March 2016 we did something similar with a band, Crossfiya, […]