Friday, May 27, 2011

Serving Before We Serve

The countdown is on! We are officially less than ONE month away from departing Atlanta and heading to Parque Este in Sevilla!! We are all thrilled to see our friends and are eager to meet new English Camp students. 

Before we leave home to serve an ocean away, we wanted to serve our community here in town. The team chose to support the Atlanta Union Mission and it's goal to end homelessness in Georgia. Among the many locations the AUM has, one of the largest operations is the Thrift Store, which is operated in Marietta near the Big Chicken. Our team met early last Saturday for a some fuel at a nearby Cracker Barrel and then headed over the the AUM Thrift Store. Upon our arrival, we were greeted by Henry, a long-time advocate for the homeless. Henry is hard to describe if you haven't met him- he has the most amazing smile and happiness about him and has a genuine love for serving the needy. Even greater is his absolute love and devotion to the Lord. 

After an introduction to the Mission and a tour of the facility, we were ready to begin our duties. Henry introduced us to Vickie (pictured), the store manager, for our assignments. We paired up and took on the tasks of folding and sorting linens, cleaning pictures for sale and sorting, hanging and tagging donations. Michael took on the tough task of accepting the heavy donations and putting together donated furniture. 

All-in-all, the four hours we spent at the mission and with each other FLEW by and our time was up before we knew it. We were excited to head to Spain together in the first place, but after bonding with each other while serving on our home turf. We are so excited to head to Spain in 22 more days and can't wait to update you from Sevilla!!

Con amor, 
stephanie, arinn, carrin, joanna, kim, michael and thea

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Day 3 in Spain!!!!

Well, we are complete with day 3!! Its almost midnight here and we are closing up shop. We had an AWESOME day today!! We got to go to the ICF church service this morning and they have certaintly grown. They had about 60 people in attendance this morning. Samuel (preacher) said that there were 3 women today that were brand new and had never been before! AMEN! How awesome to see God work! After lunch all the church members had brought a different dish and we had lunch (Pot Luck done the Spanish way)!! The food was oh so good! After lunch some of the church members took us down to Barcelona where we got to roam and in true tourist fashion, take a bunch of pictures. Micheal (one of our fearless leaders) has done an awesome job driving the PePe van. He didn't even need the GPS today, which is awesome. We are back to working at the church in the AM. We are painting and taking a trip to IKEA to purchase the furniture for parts of the church. The people here are so open and warm.. THey have truly opened up their homes and hearts to us. We, as a team, only hope and pray that we repay the favor to them and hope that all who encounter us see God in us. As it says in the Gospel of John "He must increase and I must decrease". Please keep the team in your prayers and more updates to come... Love and Blessing from Spain Team 2010! :)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Hola from Espana

Hola from Espana!!!
Well we made it safe and sound. Our flight over was a little bumpy, but GOd provided us with safe travels. And after a quick nap yesterday and a solid 8 hourse of sleep, we are all rested and ready to go! We hit it hard today, priming, sanding and cleaning up at the new church builiding in Villanova. We had "Desyunon (lunch)" today w/some of the church memebers at the church in Sitges. We have quickly adopted the song "Allyjandro" as our team song. Not by choice, but bc it got stuck in my head and it has spread to the rest of the team. I will say this...the people of Spain are super passionate about bringing God's word to the people in their communities. The new church building is going to be a great tool for them to reach out to their neighboors and show the Glory of God. Since we have been thing remains the same... no matter the culuture, age, economic background...we are a people designed to seek and need our God. He is doing mighty things. In a country of 46 million people and only 100K Christians.... it reminds us how lucky we are to grow up in an environment where the name of Jesus is heard often. And we have mucho respect for the people here as they have been tasked w/the purpose of carrying God's word to the masses. But as the Word tells us, "The harvest is plenty, but the laborers are few" !! More updates to come.... God is LOVE!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Encouragement for the Team heading to Vilanova!

This devotional was sent to me this morning from Passion City Church (Louie Giglio and Chris Tomlin's church), and I thought it was appropriate for Michael and Cara's team as they leave for Spain today (and also good for our friends in Spain to hear as they struggle to be a "light" in this dark world)....

"But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you. "

2 Corinthians 4:7-12

God speed as you head over to my favorite place in the world! I am praying for you all and excited to see pictures and hear all about it! I will be praying for your safe travels, protection from the enemy, that God will be glorified through your words and actions and that He will give you strength and energy in using the skills and gifts that He has already equipped you with!

Love you guys! (AND my 2nd family in Spain)!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Tres días más y estaremos en España!!!

Hola Amigos en Espana!!!
Hi, or Howdy, as we like to say in the South. We just wanted to say HI to all of you and tell you that we are so excited to be coming over to Spain and spending time with you all. We have been praying for the mission trip for months now. We have been praying for our hearts and for the hearts of the people of Spain. Our prayer has been that God would work mighty wonders in all of us and through us while we are in Spain. And that those people in your communities would be affected dramatically by the LOVE of our Lord. We are confident that God is doing a major work in the country of Spain and HE is working through each and everyone of you. We are really excited to be working beside each as our brothers and sisters in Christ. We can't wait and we hope you guys are as excited as we are. We are honored to be chosen to come to Spain and work with you all. Our God is amazing and HE transcends all countries, boundaries and culture! AMEN! Only 3 more days and we will be in Spain. We love you all and will see you very soon!
Spain Mission Team
Michael, Cara, Heather, Cheryl, Jamey and Brant

Thursday, July 1, 2010


¡El equipo han regresado a casa! Gracias a estudiantes, profesores y amigos que han hecho posible uno de los mejores Campus de Inglés. Viejas relaciones han sido fortalecidas, nuevas relaciones han sido creadas y muchas vidas han sido impactadas. Gracias de todo corazón de parte de responsables, voluntarios y de toda la iglesia Parque Este.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

The week is coming to an end...

wow wow wow. we are so thankful for an awesome week with our sweet friends here in sevilla. this time the team has been able to spend more time with pepe and mari, hearing their stories and praying together. for this we are so grateful. to see pictures and hear stories of how the church went from a dream to reality is nothing short of miraculous. pepe and mari abandoned a life of comfort many years ago. together with their beautiful children, they work daily to build relationships with the community they love. theirs is truly a labor of love. watching new faces fill the rooms at parque este this week has been so encouraging for the team. as we have heard repeated often this week... it is one person, one life, one heart changed at a time. only God can change the hearts of men, this we know. trusting in his perfect timing, we wait to hear stories of life change long after we return home. for this week, we are thankful. for your prayers and support, we are thankful. for our great and loving God, who rescued all of us when we were just lost sinners, we are thankful. glory to God. gracias gracias Señor.

we leave for malaga in the morning. we will travel by train and arrive midday. the team will debrief and all but julie and i return home monday morning. please pray for safe travels for the team and for the time we spend in sevilla to be beneficial to the community. we will host a movie night, game night, and more to continue investing in those new friends who attended camp this week. julie and i travel home thursday morning and we would appreciate your prayers for safe travel as well. here are just a few photos to sum up the last few days.

a reminder pepe gave us today has stuck with me and i would love to share it. when you think of spain, you don't necessarily think of missions. but in spain only 1% of the population are evangelical christians... as you pray for us, please pray that God would bring a revival to spain to change the hearts and minds of the people here.

con amor,

arinn, amy, tom, julie, joanna, kim, and steph