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

  • The Importance of Investing in Youth August 22, 2018
    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 …
  • Reflections on Cross-Cultural Emotions May 18, 2018
    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 …
  • Risks and Rewards March 14, 2018
    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 …
  • One year check-in/checklist February 26, 2018
    As I woke up this morning, I did my standard ritual of sleepily pawing at my phone which lay next to the bed.  I picked it up, checked the time, gave into my Facebook addiction, and scrolled down the …
  • Double Comfort Safari Club January 21, 2018
    Just the other day I finished reading a novel from the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency series. If you are not familiar with these novels from Alexander McCall Smith, they are clever, well-written books …

Jay and Sheri Hartzler – Serving in Romania

  • Here we go again! September 1, 2018
    We return to Romania with renewed strength and vision.  The pattern we hope to maintain is nine months in Romania …Continue reading → …
  • Staying Busy in the Tigmandru Woodshop May 12, 2018
    Here is a bit of an update on the shop.  First, we thank you for your financial support. It has …Continue reading → …
  • On being grateful November 25, 2017
    The summer months in the U.S. in 2017 were unusual.  Instead of actively doing all of my normal activities, I …Continue reading → …
  • Back to Work in the Woodshop November 12, 2017
    We’ve been back in Romania a month.  It felt like we were gone a very long time but the language …Continue reading → …
  • Reflecting on retirement March 11, 2017
    This weekend is the bi-annual convention of the American Choral Directors Association.  Two years ago this weekend I was sitting …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

  • An Update September 16, 2015
    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 …
  • Privilege and the Little Blue Book May 18, 2015
    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 …
  • A step in the right direction May 13, 2015
    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 …
  • Pasteles February 24, 2015
    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 …
  • A year in December 3, 2014
    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

  • the art between us March 23, 2017
    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 …
  • "The Day After The Election I Did Not Go Outside" November 16, 2016
    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 …
  • the dust settles. October 6, 2016
    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 …
  • Balance: A Reflection on the last two years — and a launch into the next chapter August 16, 2016
    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 …
  • newness and familiarity October 7, 2015
    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

  • A Shameless Plug for Score Against Poverty April 21, 2018
    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 …
  • Exchanging Ideas across Borders: A Trip to Zimbabwe April 21, 2018
    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 …
  • A long overdue update – mostly in pictures March 2, 2018
    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 …
  • Turning point March 2, 2018
    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 …
  • How to accurately measure your crop yields March 2, 2018
    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

  • English muffins October 12, 2018
    Years ago, I tried — and failed — to make English muffins. I don’t remember what the problems were exactly. Perhaps the flavor was flat? But I do know I tried about a half dozen different recipes befo …
  • the relief sale donuts of 2018 October 11, 2018
    Donuts.I have a love-hate relationship with this whole donut operation thing. The hardest part is the anticipation of it. Or maybe “the dreading of it” would be a more accurate term.For weeks, the eve …
  • the quotidian (10.8.18) October 9, 2018
    Quotidian: daily, usual or customary; everyday; ordinary; commonplace PREACH.(Also, grammar.)What distracted looks like. Even before making donuts: wiped out. From her auntie, with love: birthday lasa …
  • the quotidian (10.2.18) October 2, 2018
    Quotidian: daily, usual or customary; everyday; ordinary; commonplaceFall colors. The milk bar. Dog pile. Dog bones. Snap! goes the rubberband: no more bull.First time. For math class: a temporary tat …
  • hey-hey, look who's here! September 29, 2018
    Straight from Puerto Rico, it’s Chiro, Lery, and Demeric!!!For two whole weeks, they are here, in OUR house, whoo-hoooooo!They first got the idea for the trip (I think) one night when they were bustli …

 

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

  • Shots from the past few months December 11, 2015
    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 …
  • In Reid's Words April 27, 2015
    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 …
  • Poetry April 7, 2015
    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 …
  • If Mary were Maasai December 1, 2014
    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 …
  • Swahili, Tanzania, and khat-chewing bus drivers October 14, 2014
    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

  • Where the Streets Have No Name: Jewi Refugee Camp, Western Ethiopia October 14, 2018
    Moses Moini (left) with Chencot James, 16, a South Sudanese member of the Mennonite Church (MKC) in Gambela Moses Moini was a first-year student at Juba University, Sudan, when military tanks crashed …
  • Do Roses Cause AIDS? September 30, 2018
    There are reasons why we work with our long-term partner Meserete Kristos Church (MKC, the Mennonite Church in Ethiopia) in the trucking town of Ziway on HIV/AIDS prevention, care and support. One rea …
  • To Build a Fire September 27, 2018
    In the late fourth century Empress Helena, the 80 year old mother of Constantine the Great, went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem to find the true cross on which Jesus was crucified. Ever since reading Th …
  • Animal Update. Adis Amet! September 8, 2018
    It’s Ethiopian New Year’s on Tuesday, September 11. I love having something good to look forward to on Sept. 11. This is by some accounts the biggest Ethiopian holiday, celebrated by Muslims, Orthodox …
  • Coca Cola Sundae and her BFF (Big Fuzzy Friend) June 29, 2018
    These are just for fun. Because we love our little Sundae! And it looks like Mbwa does, too, which is just scratch your head strange. Look at how straight her legs are now Four days old. Her umbilical …

Other CMCers Living Internationally

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

  • New Theme: Photos September 28, 2018
    Today we’re happy to introduce Photos, an image-centric theme with a clean layout and a design that showcases your favorite snapshots. When we designed Photos, we put extra care into making it look an …
  • National Voter Registration Day 2018 September 25, 2018
    Did you know that today is National Voter Registration Day?  At Automattic, our mission is to make it easier for people to speak their mind and connect with communities across (and beyond) the web — e …
  • Try Simplenote, Our Fast and Easy-to-Use Notes App September 12, 2018
    A great note-taking app can help with all kinds of daily routines like taking class notes, writing a shopping list, or jotting down ideas for your next great blog post. At Automattic, we love using Si …
  • New in the WordPress.com Business Plan: Jetpack Search August 31, 2018
    The WordPress.com Business plan combines fully managed hosting with the freedom to grow and scale your site without limits. Today we’re adding Jetpack Search to WordPress.com Business so you can enjoy …
  • Introducing the Simple Payment Widget August 14, 2018
    Since the introduction of the Simple Payment Button, we’ve been looking for more ways to streamline payments on WordPress.com and Jetpack-enabled sites. Today, we’re introducing a new variant of the S …