Sunday, June 29, 2008

"You Call this a Cappuccino!"

There is nothing like a roadtrip in Europe. Most foreigners navigate through the Scottish highlands or the Dalmatian Coast, but the Armitage-Price team blazes a trail out of Slovakia, through Hungary and straight on to Serbia! It was an odd experience leaving the EU and actually having to present our passports to cross a border. We want to thank you for your prayers, not only did the rental car make it in it's entirety, but Matthew developed a love for "driving a la Serb". There is general concern amongst his peers...

The conference went well and, as in so many cases, we feel as though we have walked away having learned more than we taught. It is amazing the collective learning that takes place when people come together to share ideas. Sheldon did a fantastic job of facilitating the conference and we feel we learned a great deal by observation. It was wonderful to see trainers from Canada, Wales and Bulgaria interacting with Serbian church leaders. The value of strong leaders is just so apparent when you fill a room with them.

A personal highlight for us came on the final night of the conference. We were asked to pray for anyone who felt a calling into mission. For Serb's this is quite something for God to ask them to do as visa requirements still greatly limit their mobility. We really appreciate the chance to pray for people and God confirmed thoughts and ideas in ways that only he can.

Overall, it was a great week of learning. We were even able to teach 3-year-old Mia Armitage a valuable life skill. While discussing what princesses say, she asked what a modern day princess might say to someone. After some thought we imparted this wisdom: snap your finger, wave your hand over your head and say "you call this a cappuccino!"

Monday, June 23, 2008

Ideme do Srbsko (we are going to Serbia)

At the crack of ridiculous-o'clock tomorrow morning we will begin our drive down through Slovakia and Hungary to Serbia. We will be assisting Sheldon as he facilitates the third, and final, NLI Organix Conference (leadership development). So if you think of us over the next few days, you could mention these things to God:

-that the conference would be a success in every sense of the word (spiritually, educationally, financially and relationally)
-that we would make it there and back safely (we've rented a car to save money on flights, but we're not sure if we're savvy enough to share the road with Serbian drivers)
-also that the rental car would make it safely too...
-this request may be odd, but stick with us: that we could share a room while at the conference. The sleeping facility (dorm) is booked quite full and we may have to sleep in separate rooms with people we do not know. It's just always nice to be able to have a place to share our day and thoughts together...and wander around in our pajama's!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Lumen Festival

Lumen is an outdoor event hosted by the Catholic Church of Slovakia. Last week we made our way into Trnava to catch the concerts. We saw a number of bands from Slovakia and the UK. In truth, we were really there to see the band Delirious. One line from a song grabbed us: "every soul needs a savior". Admittedly, a basic truth. There we stood in the town square, which had been converted into an outdoor concert hall, surrounded by hundreds of people (side note: most of whom were sweaty / wet from rain and were rubbing against us....).

And then the moment took on a meaning of it's own. 11:00pm - sound system booming - Delirious singing - hundreds of people filling the center of town - all declaring our need for a savior. Interesting how the most simple truths are the most powerful

Friday, June 6, 2008

OM Comes to Town

Yesterday, Operation Mobilization (OM) brought their mobile bookstore to Nitra (pictured here parked outside of TESCO alongside a busy pedestrian walkway). Mozaika hosted OM's day in the city. Alongside other members of our church we handed out flyers, welcomed people on to the bus and got to meet the OM crew. The bus provided people with access to Christian materials that they may have otherwise been unable to obtain. We believe that books have the power to shape thinking and we trust that the books that went out yesterday will be part of a larger change process.

A big thanks to OM and the team who spent the day in Nitra!