Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Friends From Afar

I saved a few photos and stories from the last two weeks to feature in a post of their own.

Amigos de Cataluña
You may remember that last fall I interpreted for Rafa, a gentleman from Spain, and that I arrived at the men's breakfast wearing a man-mask. (Oh, now you remember?)  His daughter Laura was along on that trip. ( You can see us here and here.) 

This time I was privileged to meet Yoli, the wife and mother of the family.

Once again my services as interpreter were required on two occasions:
--Monday evening at a gathering of all those interested in the camp they represent and where Rafa now works full time in maintenance. (Go to L'Arcada for more information.)

--Friday morning in a class at Indiana Wesleyan University (in a classroom where I used to teach!) It was a fun experience.

Before that we had gone to breakfast and had a great laugh at our ineptness with the waffle machine. We either did not see or did not read the directions for use, or there were none. And we most certainly missed seeing the oil spray to prep the iron before pouring in the batter. So we ended up scraping and scratching out two very stuck waffles onto one plate. I told them I felt like a foreigner in my own country. I think I was so distracted enjoying our lively conversation in Spanish that I could not focus on the waffle-making. (Excuses, excuses.) In any case it was memorable!

Freunde von Österreich
Dave and Brenda Babcock have spent over forty years working in Europe and beyond.

I met Brenda in a Christmas crusade in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, the month before we were married.
The following year, Christmas and winter, she was on our team in Germany. In fact, she helped me out the weeks before our oldest was born when I could no longer get around.
They were engaged to be marrried, but Dave had been arrested and was in prison in Turkey for distributing Bibles and Christian literature. Eleven arrests, jail and prison time, five trials, and a five-year sentence were only the beginning of many life trials over the years. In the end, however, Dave and the guys with him were held six months only and then deported.
So Dave and Brenda were married in June of 1971 in Germany, and I played the organ at their wedding. I don't think I would be able to do that now.
Needless to say it was delightful to catch up with them again. I was privileged to meet with them on four different occasions during the few days they were in this area. And the last time Mike was there as well. Then we stopped by the Red Barn to show them what's going on there with the pottery.

Interestingly, Dave uses the decade concept that I have gotten into lately as a way to process and organize our life stories. As they travel around visiting their supporting churches, he shares stories from each decade of ministry. We were on the same team back in the beginning, and for awhile lived on the same street in Vienna. Our older children played together. It is good to remember and to rehearse all that God has done.

God, who has called you into fellowship with His Son Jesus Christ our Lord, is faithful. (I Corinthians 1:9)

1 comment:

Kim said...

How fun to make new friends and see old ones!

BTW, luuuuurve the wall color in the pottery room at the Red Barn! :)