I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and new year. I thought I would take a few moments to touch base with everyone and bring you up to date with all our comings and goings.
Just after Christmas we had a “Chain Reaction” camp with about 70 young people. Chain Reaction is a Youth Ministry that is operated jointly by YWAM Canberra and one of the local Churches. From the camp we commissioned 4 teams to head out on outreach. Dianne took one of the teams to Vanuatu where they helped build concrete water takes for people in a remote village on one of the outer islands. It was wonderful to see how excited everyone was when the teams came back from outreach. In 2012 we had 35 people, this year we had 70. The question is, will we have 140 next year.
In February we hosted a team from Papua New Guinea. This group was from the same village that Dianne visited with an outreach team last year. We are starting a joint venture with the village council to raise money to help improve some of the village infrastructure and also help them run some life skills and discipleship programs for the youth. We also want to continue to send outreach teams to the village.
This Easter we had another Chain Reaction camp and at the same time we hosted a Fijian church camp. As a special treat the Fijian group prepared a Lovo (also known as a Hangi, umu, omo or Kalua depending on what part of the Pacific you are from) on Sunday night.
On Easter Monday about a dozen of us had dinner with the Israeli Ambassador. He primarily came to visit our Fijian Staff as his responsibilities also include Fiji, PNG and Tonga. Once again the Fijians prepared a Lovo
On the Wednesday after Easter we launched a new ministry for YWAM Canberra. Island Breeze is a ministry within YWAM internationally, Island Breeze focuses on issues of restoration and redemption of peoples and their culture - 'To know God and make Him known through His inherent gifts and expressions within the nations'. As part of this launce we had a traditional island celebration which included yet another Lovo.
On a personal note, I have had increasing pain in my knees over the years and I finally went to see a specialist earlier this year. I was expecting that he would maybe recommend an MRI or an arthroscopy or something like that. Instead, he recommended a double knee replacement. I was booked in for surgery on the 12th of April but on the Tuesday after Easter I got a phone call to say that my surgery has been postponed. At this stage I have been pencilled in for the 10th of May. It’s a bit frustrating because the pain in my knees is getting worse each week. Taking into account that it takes about 3 months to recover, I will be out of action until about the end of July. Because I will need looking after, Dianne has also had to hold off making any commitments for that period.
Until next time
God Bless you all