And we’re off!

I’m sitting with our luggage in the Tampa Airport waiting for our flight in about 30 minutes. Trey is having a blast with Heidi in the playground area.

Our strategy – let him run, run, run, run, run, run… so that he sleep, sleep, sleeps on the plane.

Here we are with Heidi’s parents before leaving:

Saying goodbye to the Jensens before leaving

How to Reach Us While We’re Gone

Many people have asked us “Will you have internet access in Ghana?” The answer (to my great relief) is “Yes!”

The Medical Centre uses a satellite phone to send and receive email. I’m not sure what the charges are at this point but I’ve been assured it is perfectly fine for checking email and can even allow the occasional online shopping spree (though I’d guess any shipping & handling fees to Nalerigu would be outrageous!).

In addition, whenever we are in the capitol city of Accra or when I go to Abidjan, Cote d’Ivoire we will have high speed internet access. As a “plan B” though, I’ve setup a feature on this blog that lets us to post via email. In fact, this post was sent as an email and the blog automatically retrieves the message and makes the subject line the headline and the message the post body.

So don’t worry – we’ll be updating the site regularly and you can still contact us via email (no large attachments please).

Commissioning Service at Church

Our church has really changed over the past 4 years since we first attended. They have gotten past a lot of the inner turmoil and bickering and are now truly becoming a “mission minded” church. Not only have they tremendously helped us out with our upcoming mission trip, but they are also sending a team of 4 members to Cameroon tomorrow to begin engaging the Hausa people group.

This morning we had a commissioning service to commit to the Lord all those who will be traveling and to ask for His protection and guidance on the journey. The service was also exciting because two of the guys from our Sunday School class were baptized. We can’t say enough how blessed we are through our church family – we couldn’t ask for a more supportive and caring group of friends.

Harold Johnson whose wife is going to Cameroon speaks to the church Pastor Mike reminded us all of our obligation to be on mission - whether in Africa or in our own hometown The church gathered around everyone going and prayed
Our friend (and youth pastor) Jon got to baptize Joey and Matt Joey makes his public statement of faith Matt being baptized
Tyler and Matt grinning (I think they had too much coffee) Heidi looks her best every day - not just Sunday! Trim that beard William!

Send Off Party

Tonight our Sunday School class gathered at Tyler & Amy Ross’ house for a cookout and time of prayer for our trip. Trey had a blast playing with his pals one last time and we were greatly encouraged by the support of all of our friends. Here are some images from the event:

Football was on TV - no, AMERICAN football Madeleine loved the camera flash The youngest of the kids hanging out
Neil is still recovering from hernia surgery Perrys and Materassos have some laughs - probably about baby potty humor Mikey loves hamming it up for cameras
Phoenix takes things a little more seriously Huh? Phoenix checking out a backyard buddha
Trey and Mikey hanging out - earlier Trey was bopping Mikey on the head Bird’s Eye View It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s… SUPER Ava!
Mikey takes to the skies Our Awesome Hosts! Yes?

Travel Expenses Covered

We thank God for answering our prayers and providing for all of our travel expenses. SFBC just called us to let us know how much money was raised at the pancake breakfast and from individual people’s contributions. All of our travel expenses have been covered and we will have some extra money to purchase supplies to deliver to the hospital and missionary personnel on the field.

If you contributed in any way we want to thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Every time we have gone on a mission trip our friends and family have stepped up and made it financially possible. So thank you for making our opportunities to serve realities.

Thank you for your support!

Pancake Breakfast Fundraiser

Sunday morning the youth at our church help throw a pancake breakfast fundraiser for our upcoming trip. They made & served pancakes for the church and asked for donations for our trip.

A HUGE thank you to everyone who has contributed and to the youth who got up so early on Sunday morning to work on the fundraiser. Here are some photos of them hard at work. Also, those of you that attended our wedding may recognize the aprons.

Max and Lori mix the batter Jim and Dan work on flipping flapjacks Renee and Josh flipping pancakes
Serving the pancakes out Chip and Dan pose with pride for a job well done Serving out sausage
No pancakes for Trey! He ate grapes - one of his favorites. Tyler, Amy, and Ava arrive to help out The last of the batter is used to make a giant Mickey Mouse pancake
Pastors Scott and Mike eat breakfast with other church members Joe and Mikey about to dig in Ian reminds everyone to donate as he butters up his pancakes

Spread the News! The Hauns are Going to Africa!