Mission and Service Workers

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


Kaitlin Heatwole & Nathan HershbergerServing in Iraq with MCC.

  • What are we holding on to? January 22, 2017
    To live in Iraq is to be surrounded by stories of suffering.  Recently, friends of mine have been returning to their home villages on the Nineveh Plains in territory newly re-captured from ISIS by Ira …
  • Kurdish taxi ride November 16, 2015
    Flagging a taxi home from a partner’s office at 5 pm, the sky was vivid with sunset.  “Hello, sir. Five thousand to go across town?” I asked the driver in Kurdish; “no, seven and a half,” he replied.  …
  • A life untethered August 29, 2015
    Ali is from Kobane, the mostly Kurdish city in northern Syria that was almost completely destroyed last year during intense fighting between Syrian Kurds and ISIS.  Soon after graduating from universi …
  • Wassiin and Kao August 9, 2015
    Wassiin and her son Kao are from Sinjar, a region in Iraq west of Mosul.  Sinjar has for hundreds of years been the home of many Yezidis, including Wassiin and her family.  But in August, 2014, as the …
  • New shoots on the withered tree August 4, 2015
    Yesterday was the one year anniversary of the ISIS assault on Mt. Sinjar.  August 6 is the anniversary of the massive displacement from the Nineveh plains.  Iraq has about 3.1 million IDPs (nearly 10% …

Cristina and Doug Graber Neufeld – Serving in Kenya with with Mennonite Central Committee

  • Kenya Camping March 17, 2017
    Alex and Evan have the week off for spring break, so we took advantage of the time to get some camping in our last few months of living in Kenya.  We had a night along Lake Naivasha, and two nights at …
  • Sand dams, singing and sodis March 2, 2017
    It’s been a few weeks of wonderful experiences working with our MCC partners, we will miss these rich experiences when we leave Kenya this July.Our whole family was honored to accompany an MCC work an …
  • Conservation Agriculture February 11, 2017
    Now that it’s been a year since our partners in Ukambani started their conservation agriculture project, and have made it through their first harvest season, we had a chance to visit some of the farms …
  • Neufeld family visit January 9, 2017
    Christmas holiday brought our long-anticipated visit by the Neufeld side of the family – Doug’s parents and one sister.  We’re so fortunate to have family that like to travel and so make the long trip …
  • November 2016 December 6, 2016
    Thanksgiving at the MCC office!  We had the joy of sharing the tradition with several of our Kenyan staff colleagues, and other ex-pat MCCers here.  The turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing tasted gr …

Jay and Sheri Hartzler – Serving in Romania

  • 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 → …
  • Merry Christmas! December 25, 2016
    Dear Friends A Christmas blessing to all of you!  We won’t recount the experiences of the past year because many …Continue reading → …
  • A Day at the Woodshop October 5, 2016
    There have been many “Romanian” days but this one is right up there with the best.  The day started off …Continue reading → …
  • Considering the election from far away September 28, 2016
    We returned to Sighisoara on September 16 and life is much the same here as it was when we left …Continue reading → …
  • Every morning is Easter morning May 2, 2016
    The Avery and Marsh song “Every Morning is Easter Morning” has taken on a new meaning this year.  For most, …Continue reading → …

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

  • 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 Zimmerman – Serving with Serving in Bolivia with MCC’s SEED program

  • CA Field Days in Suntwe and Halumba March 4, 2017
    Most farmers have ploughed/ripped/pot-holed, planted, fertilized, and weeded their fields by now. We are watching the rain pour down, monitoring our fields, keeping weeds and pests at bay, and waiting …
  • Extension Work March 4, 2017
    With the growing season in full swing, I’m busy visiting farmers in their fields and doing extension work. Most of the time I either walk or bike to meet up with a farmer at their home, and then toget …
  • Halumba Life and Adventures March 4, 2017
    It’s amazing how quickly life fills up! Four months ago I was still getting used to my little room and now I often can’t wait to get back to my family and home in Halumba after a week of work in Choma …
  • Children Everywhere (29 Nov 2016) December 6, 2016
    Climb trees Gnarly bark, branches sway, leaves brush across cheeks Bodies hold on by pinkies Snag the ripening fruits Climb higher if you dare   Run barefoot Or with tattered or mismatched or perhaps …
  • A house in pictures December 6, 2016
    Since I will be living in Halumba for the next 2 years, a house is being built within my host family’s homestead so that I may have more independence, privacy, and do some cooking for myself! This has …

Larisa ZehirServing in Colombia with Mennonite Central Committee

  • Esperanzas April 17, 2016
    En el último mes, en los Montes de María y muchas partes más de Colombia, se ha experimentado una aparenta paradoja de acontecimientos, aunque en el fondo tienen toda la lógica del conflicto armado.  …
  • Giving Thanks. November 30, 2014
    Well folks,  it’s been over a year.  I should apologize, I might, but I also may justify.  I feel like this year has been the fastest in my life so far.  Work and life on Colombia’s bold Caribbean Cos …
  • Transitional Justice and Damage Control October 1, 2013
    The learning curve has been steep this last month in Colombia.  I have shaken the dust off vocabulary for self-protection, for legal process, for courteous letters to officials.  Once tricky names now …
  • Las Americas August 31, 2013
    I woke up this morning with notes of pots and pans echoing in my ears…  and I’m not even in Colombia yet.  If any of you haven’t been reading the news, Colombia is rocking with thousands of its popula …
  • Aquí estamos (después de caminar). April 12, 2013
    I still feel stunned.  Six months of planning and analysis, diplomatic conversations with NGOs and the departmental government, hundreds of phone minutes and hours of dangerous Jeep rides to communiti …

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


Other CMCers Living Internationally

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

  • Independent Publisher 2 Is Here April 25, 2017
    The popular Independent Publisher design is a WordPress theme that has long been beloved for its simplicity and legibility. So we are happy to announce that it has been improved, ever so slightly, wit …
  • New Theme: Twenty Seventeen April 13, 2017
    We’re excited to announce that this year’s WordPress default theme, Twenty Seventeen, is now available on WordPress.com. Designed by Mel Choyce, Twenty Seventeen is a business-oriented theme that allo …
  • A New WordPress App Update, Designed for the iPad March 24, 2017
    Over the past few months we’ve been working to dramatically improve users’ experience on iPad — and we’re proud to share those with you now, in our WordPress app for iOS, available in the iTunes Store …
  • Unlimited Premium Themes Now Included in the Premium Plan March 23, 2017
    Finding just the right look for your site can be a fun task. If you’re on the Premium plan, it’s about to get a lot more fun: the Premium plan now includes unlimited access to all our premium themes. …
  • Field Notes: CMS Africa Summit March 22, 2017
    Automatticians, the people who build WordPress.com, participate in events and projects around the world every day. Periodically, they report back on the exciting things they do in the community. This …