Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Dace Dance Dance

Hi Friends!

I just wanted to update you on my trip to the Black Forest. We (Ruth, Ralph and I) traveled to the small town of Sageten where they spoke and I danced at a church called Netzwerk 43. Theo and Arlene planted this church and it was great to be there.

When we I arrived I practiced on the stage and like most churches there was some room to dance but not as much as the dance would really need. At any rate on Saturday while I was dancing about half way through the performance Ralph decided to join me on stage since my dress caught on the edge of this log (with a burning candle) and I dragged it center stage!

What to do? Well since Ralph came to the rescue and I wasn't on fire I decided to keep dancing like any good performer and pretend that nothing was wrong. It was rather comical but I am mostly just relieved that I did not light myself on fire or the church. That really would have a been a blog story! That was Saturday evening so for the Sunday morning service they rearranged the decor and all went well!

I was supposed to stay the night at Theo and Arlene's house but at the last minute plans changed and Danni graciously took me in. She is so cool and she speaks English! Yay, I felt like we were really able to connect for the short time we had together. We chatted about some of her life experiences which are so inspiring. To say the least she was a very lovely and accommodating host - thanks Danni!

I am so impressed with myself today since I have been able to accomplish so much. I went to church and danced as usual during the service and then after the service I worked with some of the girls again to practice the Christmas dance and then I had about 45min to eat and get ready for my first workshop at Haus des Herrn. It was so great to have all this space! As a dancer you can never get enough space - so I was in my element to say the least. The more space I see somewhere the greater the urge within me is to break out and dance, even if it's in a public place! Anyways, I came home took a cat nap, cleaned, ate, decorated my room, did all my accounting and now I am writing a blog. Well folks I'm keeping this one short - so till next time keep it real...ha ha that sounds lame!

P.S. Franklin Piles who is the head honcho at the C&MA spoke during our service and I get to spend my birthday lunch with him and his wife, Ruth and Ralph and another couple that I adore :) Ruth just called me for requests for Tuesday and I decided that a lasagna would be great. I'll fill you in on more details later.

- Tschussy-

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Remember November?

I must admit I don't know where to begin. So much has happened since my last blog! Well Here are the highlights but first don't forget to check out my new widget on the left. I will continue to update you by this thermometer as I receive the monthly updates of the incoming funds that are making my dance ministry in Germany possible! A huge thank you to the individuals who have contributed so generously so far! The money invested is about enabling me to develop others in their ability, desire and freedom to use dance as an expression of worship to the glory of the Lord and specifically equipping young girls with a skill that not only builds confidence but glorifies our King!

#1: My friend from high school was travelling Europe and ended her trip in Mannheim, so we got to spend a day together. It was a surreal day!

This is us at Mannheim's Water Tower but I kinda missed it in the background, so there is a picture of it beside us...just pretend it's behind us.

#2: I went on ANOTHER road trip. This time to Basel, Switzerland.

I was invited to join some of my friends for the Joyce Meyers Conference. The turn out was crazy - the main building filled up so there was an overflow building with a capacity for 1,000 people and still there were more people, so they set up speakers on the street! There was a total of at least 9,000 people there!

During the first evening there I ran into two people I know who aren't part of our church. I thought this was incredible after being here for a month, I go to a conference with over 9,000 people in Switzerland and I run into two people I know from Mannheim and another conference I was at. This truly is a small world.

This is Stephi (who let us stay at her place) and Yvonne (who invited/drove me). There was no cost to attend the conference, we had a place to stay and I packed food, so it ended up being a very cheap trip with only gas costs split between three girls - oh ya and that road tax to use the highway into Switzerland :) Mannheim to Basel is shorter than going from Calgary to Edmonton. I didn't realize just how close together places are in Europe.

Prior to this conference I am sad to say I had not heard of Joyce Meyers. If you don't know who she is, perhaps you have heard of her best selling book, The Battlefield of the Mind. I would recommend listening to her radio or T.V. programs, or picking up one of her books. She is truly inspiring, full of wisdom and not to mention funny.

#3: Last Sunday I began teaching some girls in the church a dance for the Christmas service. They are fast learners and did very well. I am looking forward to pour into their lives as many of my teachers did when I was this age.

#4: Speaking of not really speaking much German yet...I began class on November 17.

This was today's work and I am supposed to memorize the left side of the page by tomorrow. So what am I learning? Anyone who has or is learning German might buy a shirt that says "down with der, die, das" because it is confusing! It is similar to French when each object has a gender or is neutral. See the picture below.

I split my list and color coded it into "der", "die", "das" and a column beside it with the plural form which is also different for each word! I am actually grasping it quite well for the second day of studying it. I am finding I am motivated to study. It is encouraging when I do speak in German, people always comment on and are surprised by my pronunciation. I don't have an accent - so that is amazing! Thanks to my good teacher Art for going through the alphabet and sounds with me before I came:) I am also really good at counting! The biggest struggle for me is formulating questions.

#5: Looking ahead: This weekend I will be travelling to a church in the Black Forest area with Ruth and Ralph. I will perform at their Saturday evening service and their Sunday morning service. I also will be teaching a dance workshop at the beginning of December.

#6: Other things I'm involved in are two house groups, one German and one English. I led a creative worship time for the German house group since I am not a singer and I don't play any instruments. I wrote each person's name on a sheet of paper and brought markers with me. I got everyone to write encouraging words for each other and then we each got to take these words home with us and let it encourage us. It was really well received, so feel free to use this idea if you like :) I have also taken part in several church training sessions and prayer meetings.

I am thankful for great friends, amazing roommates, wonderful mentors, what I am learning and the opportunity to dance each Sunday.

Please pray for a quick mind and sharp ear for the language.
Pray that my vision will extend my time here: knowing how to spend my time, looking for and training a new leader, where to really focus my energies as there are many opportunities on the horizon! Praise God that there has been such an interest expressed in dance.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Mistletoe is in the air...

This blog is just for fun and since it's getting close to Christmas I think it's appropriate.

As a single person I sometimes have great ideas for when I might find myself in a relationship. Well gentleman, instead of keeping this one to myself I'm about to share an idea with you...

DISCLAIMER: This theory has not been tested and results may vary - use at your own risk!

If you find yourself in a cold place like Germany or Canada but you still like taking long romantic walks - this could spice or heat things up in the cold winter. If you see a tree like this

You will want to pass by it with a girl on your just the right moment you can pull this out of your fun and interesting facts hat - "did you know that those blobs on the tree are mistletoe?". If your girl likes corny she may find it funny and give a favorable response but like I said it has never been tried by me.

If you do end up taking my idea: no need to give credit to me, I just ask that you post your results so myself and others can see!

Well folks this silly blog has come to a close
Warmest Wishes

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Feelin' Fall

A lot has happened since my last blog! First I went off to Cologne with around thirty other individuals from Haus des Herrn. I rode up in the English car which had people from Africa, India, New Zealand and Canada. So what were we up to? We went to an Encounter Weekend which is about finding freedom in Christ and the power of forgiveness. It was an intense time so I really didn't take pictures but here's a few of us during a dinner break.

We were back for church on Sunday and in the evening there was an event at Coffee Fellows. The church rents out this coffee shop so people can bring friends who want to learn more about God but may not want to go to church. The theme was "The Way, The Truth and The Life". The atmosphere is relaxed with live music, coffee and conversation. There were three interviews throughout the evening, with each person describing what it looks like in their life to have one aspect of Jesus as the way, the truth or the life.

Then early Monday morning we (Ruth, Ralph, Valerie, Inge and I) were off to Field Forum in Ratzeburg.

Ratzeburg is an absolutely stunning place - it is a peninsula so there is plenty of water surrounding this quaint area.

Field Forun is a yearly event for missionaries within the Alliance to connect, recharge and be cared for. Here are the caregivers:

Jody and Caryn from Moses Lake.
They know a girl I went to Belhaven with - what a crazy small world!

Bob and Judy Ether from Savanna.
We love you guys - thanks for coming and serving!

Ralph around town - fits right in :)

This is the room we used for the dance workshop. We had to do a bit of rearranging - first thing to go lamps and tables. These are really cool lamps though - they can be attached anywhere along theses rods. Thanks to our handy man Ralph they were not in the way.

Ralph and Ruth had fun dancing in all the free space.

These are all the brave souls who signed up for the dance workshop.
A special mention to Ralph and Jerry as they were the only men and I did not tailor it to them - so thanks for being good sports!

This is me and my good friend Val. In case you're wondering I'm being the vine ;)

Here's one of the cuties that was running around at Field Forum - this is Hannah.
Field Forum was a very encouraging time where I made some great friends and connections.

We got home on Friday and on Saturday we took a day trip to Heidelberg (about 25 minutes from Mannheim).
This is the main palace there.

Each of these statues depicts someone from the bible.

I am extremely excited because this is the first time I've found the equivalent of a Tea Misto or London Fog - different lingo depending where you buy coffee.

Walking back to the car we saw this...count em... 39 letter word!

So without cheating, I challenge you to leave your best guess as to what it means.
Hint: There is one very similar in Calgary and several people from Ambrose have done an internship or worked here.

I do have a video of Ralph saying this word but I am having issues uploading a video this time around - sorry.

Also on the way back I found some of the best graffiti ever!
This is just a portion of this piece of art.

Thursday October 29th is my sister's birthday but it also marks the end of my first month here! Thank you for your prayers and support. I will now be in Mannheim for the rest of my stay. The blogs will be more details and stories as I get to know people, get more involved with the church and keep you posted on new developments.

I will be starting language classes at the University of Mannheim on November 16! I am looking forward to this time of instruction to really start grasping the German language. I am able to read it quite well and my pronunciation is good. Please pray that I will begin to understand what I am hearing and remember what I am learning. This program is 5 hours of study for 5 days a week. This intensive time will be very helpful to the rest of my time here as I communicate with others.

Until next time...

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Hillsong Conference 2009

So here are my wonderful roomies Barbara and Judith

The Hillsong Conference for Europe just happened to be in here are some pics of my whirlwind tour!

Here I am-just arrived in rainy rainy London and if you look closely you will see the yogurt spattered on the front of my jacket and scarf.

Unfortunately this was only the first of many incidents. Later in the day at the museum I was waiting outside sipping my tea, when a lady fell into me. Lucky for her I broke her fall and I assured her I was fine as tea dripped off of my face BUT the good news is it wasn't scalding hot :) For anyone who knows me well this next story will not surprise you. At dinner I spilled my full cup of tea around everyone's dinner :( I have decided I will never live in London.

There was a demonstration at Parliament - people scaled the walls and had signs and flags reading "Change Politics Save the Climate". It definitely got people's attention.

Did you know there is always an emergency in London - between helicopters, police cars, fire trucks and ambulances there always seems to be a siren going.

Here I am at Trafalgar Square. I got to see some originals of Pierre August Renior - my favorite impressionist!

Had to get the classic pic

I got to know the tube and DLR system quite well. In the background is the base of Big Ben.

We walked through St. James Park to Buckingham Palace

Here I experienced a first - I saw a black swan and its baby. There were so many birds: ducks, white and black swans and pelicans!

The Queen was home :)

Me with Bob the tempting to run inside and visit the Queen Mother but I restrained myself!

A Palace guard - I saw the changing of the guards, it's rather funny.
Artistic shot from the keyhole of a gate.

I just had to visit Harrods and when we went inside we ran into Brian Houston and Gary Clarke. For those of you who aren't Hillsong fanatics they were the "head honchos" of the conference.

Here at the Tower Gateway Bridge - by a cool door.

Here's the gang I spent many hours with each day;)

Here is the Hillsong Church in London. They rent the Dominion Theatre each Sunday!
We arrived 20 min early for church and it took over a minute to walk to the back of the line. I've never have to line up for church before!

This is inside the ExCeL Center where the conference was. We started at 9:30am till 9:30pm! It was an intense and wonderful experience on many levels.
1) Worshiping with that many people at once (over 42 countries present)
2) Hillsong and Hillsong United music with Israel Houghton as a special guest
3) Several renowned and inspirational speakers:
- Brian & Bobbie Houston
-Gary Clarke
-Graig Roeschel
-Flip Flippen
-Joseph Prince
-Donna Crouch
-Nicky Gumbel
-Christine Caine
4) I got to know some of the leadership and church members of HDH better!
5) I am filled, renewed, and have notes to refer to during my internship (especially the session on creative arts in the church)

Finally the Brit's just have a way of saying "mind the gap". Well here is one of many funny signs I saw:

On that note please pray for me as I prepare to lead a workshop at an upcoming conference.