Mission and Service Workers

Many CMC members are serving people all around the world. On this page, you can read updates on their adventures.

 Lindsay and Asher Fast – Serving in Botswana with Mennonite Mission Network and Virginia Mennonite Missions

  • January 13, 2019Braais & Byes
    Lindsey and I were fortunate to take a gorgeous vacation and final African adventure to Cape Town over Christmas. We saw amazing, natural beauty and many things worthy of capturing with a picture. Alt …
  • October 31, 2018Assigning Worth: What do we put price tags on?
    As Lindsey and I are nearing the end of our two-year term of service in Botswana, I find myself reflecting over many things; even more so than usual. I’ve mentioned it before, but the pace of life her …
  • August 22, 2018The Importance of Investing in Youth
    Imagine growing up in a dry, desert terrain. The summers are long and hot. The winters short. You didn’t grow up with many toys in the house. You live with your grandmother and both of your parents ar …
  • May 18, 2018Reflections on Cross-Cultural Emotions
    Lindsey’s Thoughts My aunt sent us some proverbs recently about living in another culture (Jacob’s Proverbs on How to Live Happily in other Cultures, 1973). The first proverb is: “The psychological sp …
  • March 14, 2018Risks and Rewards
    We recently completed a 15-week cross-cultural discipleship course through Eastern Mennonite University. This course was designed to be apart of our service experience and involved international worke …

Jay and Sheri Hartzler – Serving in Romania

  • December 8, 2019A season of wonder
    Advent, the season of anticipation and wonder.  This week the word “wonder” has been cemented in my mind.  On Tuesday …Continue reading → …
  • September 11, 2019We keep coming back
    Last night we returned to begin our 6th year in Romania.  Sleep was a challenge and I was awake at …Continue reading → …
  • September 1, 2018Here we go again!
    We return to Romania with renewed strength and vision.  The pattern we hope to maintain is nine months in Romania …Continue reading → …
  • May 12, 2018Staying Busy in the Tigmandru Woodshop
    Here is a bit of an update on the shop.  First, we thank you for your financial support. It has …Continue reading → …
  • November 25, 2017On being grateful
    The summer months in the U.S. in 2017 were unusual.  Instead of actively doing all of my normal activities, I …Continue reading → …

Amy & Giles EanesServing in Colombia with MCC's SEED program

Greetings from Colombia.

The past few months have been full for both of us. We have had both sets of parents come and visit, travels for vacation and work, and holiday activities. Also, we have been kept busy going to doctor appointments and preparing for a new stage in life as parents! In the middle of May we are expecting a little boy that will be born here in Bogota.

Additionally, both of our jobs have kept us on our toes. The end of the year means lots of MCC partner project reports for Amy to help approve, translate, and submit as well as project planning for the new year. The 15th of February marked the end of this cycle of the 2-year Seed program which Giles helps to coordinate and thus was busy with closing activities for the Seeders. The next few months will bring a lot of changes as we start to transition out of our roles and start thinking about the next stage of life. We are planning to move back to Harrisonburg in late summer of 2018 and are looking forward to reconnecting with CMC.

Colombia continues to be a complex context. Over a year ago, Colombia signed a peace accord with the FARC guerrillas, and since then there has been a largely successful effort to demobilize and disarm. Unfortunately, there is little political will to put into law many of the parts of the accords related to social and economic reforms, and thus there is much uncertainty about what will happen. Many community and social leaders who support the implementation of the peace process, as well as environmental and human rights defenders, continue to be threatened and assassinated, further destabilizing regions – more than 170 have been killed since the signing of the accord. Additionally, congressional and presidential elections right around the corner lend more uncertainty to the process, since the next administration may or may not follow through on necessary legislation for implementation. This also affects the peace negotiations that have been going on for one year with the ELN guerrillas, which have currently been suspended. The situation in Venezuela has forced hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans from their homes in search of jobs, medicine, and food, and they continue to pour into Colombia, straining many communities and giving politicians fuel as they claim that an implemented peace accord with the FARC and voting for politicians on the left will turn Colombia into Venezuela. Meanwhile, U.S. aid to Colombia and support of peace negotiations is being cut at a critical time, with a concerning return to war on drugs-type rhetoric.

In the midst of these dynamics, Anabaptist churches and MCC partner organizations in Colombia continue to do the work of building peace in their local communities. Please pray for the safety of our Colombian brothers and sisters, as well as for their energy and encouragement as they navigate this post-accord time.

Much love,
Giles & Amy Eanes

  • September 16, 2015An Update
    In all of the busyness of the past few months, we’ve abandoned ship in terms of blogging. Other things have quickly filled up our schedules and thoughts, and it’s only occurring to me now, in our fina …
  • May 18, 2015Privilege and the Little Blue Book
    I first came to Colombia in December of 2012 as a tourist. My husband’s college roommate and friend is Colombian, and a few months after his wedding in Virginia, he and his wife planned to visit his f …
  • May 13, 2015A step in the right direction
    Glyphosate has been in the news a lot lately. Also known as Roundup, this chemical has been used for the past twenty years as part of the U.S.-funded Plan Colombia, a program supposedly designed to de …
  • February 24, 2015Pasteles
    One amazing aspect of living in Chocó is witnessing the community and work ethic among the church ladies. The hermanas are organized, both within each church and regionally, and they frequently hold c …
  • December 3, 2014A year in
    It has been a year. One year ago today, Amy and I landed in Quibdó and hauled our suitcases into a van for the curvy hour and a half ride to Istmina. I remember remarking on our arrival how much I lov …

David, Rebekka, Immanuel and Liana StutzmanServing in Germany with Virginia Mennonite Mission


Hanna Heishman – Serving with Habitat for Humanity

  • March 23, 2017the art between us
    A few days ago, I found myself at an event called “the art between us.” It was an eclectic gathering of souls: women shared hard-learned truths in the form of slam-poems, some shared original music, a …
  • November 16, 2016"The Day After The Election I Did Not Go Outside"
    by HANIF WILLIS-ABDURRAQIBBUT for a moment, to drive to the soulfood spot on Congress ave. where utensils,large & made for the hands of no one living amongus, hang on the walls & where the woman behin …
  • October 6, 2016the dust settles.
    Recently, one of my housemates posed the most seemingly benign question toward me.We were marching down the street, recanting through memories and noting how delightfully odd it was to feel as though …
  • August 16, 2016Balance: A Reflection on the last two years — and a launch into the next chapter
    I have forever gravitated toward adventure, and my pull to explore and to know difference has made me feel like a restless wanderer. I perceive myself as one who loves deeply, but sporadically, and be …
  • October 7, 2015newness and familiarity
    I’m seated back in the valley that cradled me for so many years; the weathered Blue Ridge mountains are holding me once again. I cannot shake one of my most recent memories: winding through roads I kn …

Tabea ZimmermanServing in Bolivia with MCC's SEED program

  • April 21, 2018A Shameless Plug for Score Against Poverty
    I am not an expert on community development, managing NGO’s and monitoring programs, or even on food security, gender sensitization, or environmental conservation. But in the past few years as I have …
  • April 21, 2018Exchanging Ideas across Borders: A Trip to Zimbabwe
    Thanks to all the traveling I’ve been able to do through the MCC Seed Southern Africa program, I have stuffed my passport with visas and immigration stamps, and even had to get a new 52-pager last Aug …
  • March 2, 2018A long overdue update – mostly in pictures
    The past three months have been full of exciting travels, people, and learning. I spent a month in December-January in South Africa, both for personal vacation and work meetings. I got to meet and spe …
  • March 2, 2018Turning point
    I have reached a turning point with the relationships I am creating in Halumba. I have lived here long enough, spent enough hours around kitchen fires drinking tea and roasting maize, walked enough ki …
  • March 2, 2018How to accurately measure your crop yields
    Most NGO’s that run Conservation Agriculture (CA) and food security projects include crop yield measurements somewhere in their monitoring and evaluation strategies. We want to know how much maize and …

 


John, Jennifer, Jonathan, Rebecca, Caroline, and Nicholas Murch – Serving in Puerto Rico with Mennonite Disaster services

  • January 25, 2020samin's soy-braised beef short ribs
    Remember how, after I got that new fridge, I was so excited because I got to put the old one in the basement and have two fridges?It was real nifty.And, it turned out, it was real good we had that sec …
  • January 17, 2020pozole
    I’ve been meaning to make pozole, the traditional Mexican stew, for years now, ever since I’d had it at a fund raiser dinner, but what with all the dried chiles and meat and assorted toppings and homi …
  • January 14, 2020the quotidian (1.13.20)
    Quotidian: daily, usual or customary; everyday; ordinary; commonplaceSluuuuurp! Thrifted and white: how I like my dishes.The Big Bedroom Switcheroo of 2020: dismantling his corner.Poof and proof: Curl …
  • January 10, 20206.4 magnitude
    While our younger daughter was in Puerto Rico over the holidays, there were lots of little, and some not-so-little, earthquakes. She told me that some nights everyone slept in the living room together …
  • January 9, 2020my new kitchen: pendant lighting
    For weeks, we searched high and low for lights to go above the new island. They needed to be cheap and sturdy, provide clean light (I was sick of the yellow-green glow from our old hanging lamp), and …

 

Selena McCoy Carpenter and Rand CarpenterServing in Kenya with Mennonite Central Committee

  • December 11, 2015Shots from the past few months
    A few shots from the past months. If the picture is a good one, Reid probably took it. In October we took a trip with good friends and colleagues, Cristina and Doug, their boys, and friends, Glenda an …
  • April 27, 2015In Reid's Words
    Hello, beautiful people who spend their precious time reading the blog of some weirdos in Kenya. My name is Reid, and today, I’ve come to the blog because many people have told me to write for the blo …
  • April 7, 2015Poetry
    It has been a difficult few days in Kenya. The siege and killings in Garissa in Northeast Kenya have been difficult for many to even contemplate. I talked to at least two friends today who essentially …
  • December 1, 2014If Mary were Maasai
    Happy Advent: Come, Lord Jesus, come!For this blog, we are posting an article that our colleague, Corinna ClymerOlson wrote for The Mennonite World Review. It’s beautifully written and demonstrates th …
  • October 14, 2014Swahili, Tanzania, and khat-chewing bus drivers
    This looks familiar…https://www.flickr.com/photos/pelangio957/We finally stepped off the bus at 8:30 that night in a dark parking lot, crowded with taxi drivers, hawkers, and others whose occupation …

Rose Shenk, Bruce Buckwalter, Christian, Andrew, Daniel, and Jacob Stoltzfus – Serving in Ethiopia with Mennonite Central Committee

  • January 7, 2020To Forge a Cross
    This year for Christmas I gave my children, nieces, and nephews hand-forged Christmas tree ornaments, a variation of the Ethiopian crosses that are popular gifts from these parts. A few days ago we to …
  • November 4, 2019Butterfly in the Deep Blue Sky–no it’s not, it’s a MOTH!
    How many lives does an Eri silk moth have? Life #1. Caterpillars cocooned, it got really cold and rainy, and they stayed put. We thought they died. After about a month too long, they hatched! Death de …
  • October 30, 2019Tied Up In Knots
    I’ve been teaching Rosa how to spin. And boy, have we gotten ourselves into a tangled mess. This is not how you spin. This is how you untangle your thread after you’ve gotten it looped around the bobb …
  • October 6, 2019Treasures in Jimma City
    When we visited Jimma to see the restoration of Aba Jifar‘s palace, it happened to be over the Meskel holiday. Like Irreecha, the Oromo holiday celebrating the end of the rains and the beginning of th …
  • October 2, 2019Aba Jifar (not the villain from Aladin)
    He was a six-foot ten Muslim king in Oromia, Ethiopia in the 1800’s. His palace is falling apart. Bruce’s uncle, Leon Buckwalter, is fixing it. We went to check up on his work last weekend. The restor …

Other CMCers Living Internationally

John, Glenda, Anisa, and Karen LeonardServing in Nairobi, Kenya, with Rosslyn Academy

  • January 20, 2020The Block Editor is Now Supported on the WordPress Native Apps
    Part of what helps WordPress power 35% of the web is language: WordPress is fully translated into 68 languages. Pair that with the WordPress native apps, which make WordPress available across devices, …
  • December 18, 2019Power Users Rejoice: You've Got SFTP and Database Access
    Three new hosting management tools give you direct access to your site’s files and data. Have a site on a Business or eCommerce plan? Now you have three new ways to customize your WordPress.com site: …
  • December 10, 2019New Theme: Twenty Twenty
    We’re pleased to announce that Twenty Twenty — the new WordPress default theme designed by Anders Norén— is available to all WordPress.com sites. Twenty Twenty was designed with the flexibility of the …
  • November 28, 2019PHP 7.4 Just Came Out, and So Did Our PHP Version Switcher
    PHP is still one of the most popular languages used to build the web. The newest version, PHP 7.4, was released today — and Business and eCommerce plan customers can opt to start using it immediately. …
  • November 12, 2019A New Way to Earn Money on WordPress.com
    It’s hard to be creative when you’re worried about money. Running ads on your site helps, but for many creators, ad revenue isn’t enough. Top publishers and creators sustain their businesses by buildi …