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Mosaics World

Updated: 2018-03-05T10:21:39.114-08:00




Our friends from Redwood City are due to arrive this afternoon.  The whole team will be with us here in Marseille for a little over a week.  But two of them will stay longer.  
Bienvenu en France!




Adrienne and I are preparing for a new move in our short married life.  We both feel that the Lord is calling us to return to France, hopefully arriving in Jan 2012. 

Jersalem photos


(image) I am trying to set up a set of photos, but it isn't working right yet. You can click on this photo and get an idea of my photos anyway. I'll get this worked out at some point.

Middle East


(image) Amazingly Mosaics traveled to the Middle East this month. We visited many ancient stones, but our real interest was the living stones. We had great contacts and learned much. More Photos etc to follow.



(image) Besides all the travel and speaking engagements. There has been a little time to go fishing.
(image) This stream/lake is only an hour from where I have been living.
(image) Good friends to fish with and good friends to eat the results.

Home Assignment


(image) Since the beginning of Sept I have been in the US on what we call a "home assignment." I spent some time with my brother in CT and two weeks in Chicago before landing at my present "base." Now I am in the middle of Central California Dairyland.
(image) Some friends have kindly offered me the use of the apartment above their garage at their farm home. It has every thing I need and I am happy to call this my temporary "home" for the next few months.
(image) One of the main reason for doing a "home assignment" is to meet with friends and supporters. It is a privalege to be able to travel around and share what has been happening in Europe over the past two years.

Arabic study in Tunisia


On July 4th, I flew off to Tunis, Tunisia, for my second experience in learning Arabic. This time I chose to study the Tunisian dialect instead of the more formal "standard" Arabic. I wanted to learn a form of Arabic which is actually used on the streets of Marseille.
I Studied at the Bouguiba Institute in Tunis. This is a very popular school in the summer, especially among Italian students.

There were only about 15 students studying the Tunisian dialect. The other 300 or so where studying "Standard." Here is my class with our two teachers standing in front of me, Farida and Emna. I was in the advanced class, but I was the least advanced of the group.

(image) The school also arranged for me to live with a Tunisian family. They took very good care of me, and as you can see, we ate well. From their house I would take a bus into Tunis or get a ride in the morning with Saja, the wife, as she worked not far from the school at a large bank. Their two boys loved to talk politics and tell jokes about those from neighboring countries.

(image) Every Sunday I would attend the two Protestant churches in town, first the French Reform church at 8h30 and then the Anglican church at 10h30. I met some interesting people at both services.

(image) After the 4 weeks, I was exhausted but very glad that I made the effort to do this course and study hard. I learned more that just a bit of Arabic.

Morocco (too many photos to post..) Casablanca


We arrived on May 26 from France and Spain. We were met by our guide and began out trip by visiting three international churches in the area. This photo is from the Anglican church in Casa.

(image) We also visited the one of the largest Mosques in the world, Hassan II. It is built right along the coast, so it is quite visible from sea.

(image) Many come to pray or to just walk around the massive building with their families. The mosque also attracts many tourists like us.

(image) We had lunch at a place called "Rick's place" and Nate played the role of "Sam."

(image) It was a beautiful day and many Moroccan flags were flying.


NPTS visitor & Les Calanques


Here we are at my favorite North African restaurant. Chris from NPTS with one of my friends. Chris had his first couscous, which is daily fare here in this port city. It is a good deal as well.

(image) We discovered a new area. I had never hiked here before. It is at the end of a city bus line, so it is rather easy to get to. Unhappily we didn't have time to do the whole 1 hour hike.


Day trip with the Marhaba center


(image) The day after I got back from Berlin, I went with the Marhaba center on their yearly outing. This is a chance for families to get out of the city for the day and relax or play, which ever they need most.

(image) We were a bus load plus a few private vehicles. Families from many different nationalities were present.

(image) There was time to sit around and chat.

(image) A very good noon meal was prepared by the center that received us.

(image) We played group games and the kids had some songs prepared. We also played soccer and frisbee.

(image) The kids wore us older folk out, but they were happy for a break and snack as well.

Berlin IFFEC consultation


(image) A number of our staff attended the IFFEC consultation held in Berlin Germany. It was a time of celebration and singing as well as listening to updates and new projects.

(image) Some of the speakers were available for small group sessions, to further discuss topics.

(image) Country leaders gave reports of challenges in their areas, and talked about new projects.

(image) We broke bead together in one spirit, united in our goals and love for one another.

(image) There was also opportunity to visit some local project in Berlin. I went to one from our partner organization the FEG in an area of town know as Pankow.

Coordinators to my town


(image) I told John, Letha and Peter, that before we go to the French side of Marseille, we need to visit the North African side. The two cultures live very close together and often intertwine. The first stop was Ali's spice shop.

(image) We took in all of the sights and SMELLS (wonderful) and purchased some dried fruit.

Then we did the more typical sidewalk cafe next to the Old Port.

Great weather and a great time together.

(image) Peter took some of these photos.

Euro-Retreat 2007


Yes, once again Covenant staff were together for our annual retreat, this year held in a monastery near Santander, Spain. We had hoped for nice weather, but we found out that Santander is the "Seattle" of Spain. We had sunshine during our meeting, but the rain seemed to arrive just as free time approached.

One day was ste aside for business and presentations. It is good to hear what is going on around Europe.

We had our new Regional Coordinators, John and Letha, with us. It was a good introduction for them as they transition to Europe and to workin with us all.

(image) Good size group this year with a lot of younger faces. PTL!

Bangkok conference


(image) What a change to go from rather "winter" weather in France to hot and humid Bangkok. Jet lag and the temp change hit me pretty hard at first, but in a day or so I was functioning better.

(image) Most of my time was spent in a hotel conference room. It was a very good time that brought together people from around the world. There was great teaching and interaction. We heard many personal stories and were encouraged by what is happening in so many places across the globe. (image) After the evening sessions we were free to stroll a bit and find someting to eat in local resaurants. I was happy to be in the company of some of my Asia colleagues for a meal or two.


New Colleague to French study


(image) We recently welcomed a new colleague to Europe and had a time of orientation before she headed for French studies. We also had time to have a birthday party for Barb.
(image) Here we are at the French language school in Eastern Belgium. We received a warm welcome and cup of coffee. Johnna is now studying hard and living in a unique community of believers.

Friends and Tramways


My colleague, Ben and I have been working with a friend who is about to return to his "home" country after a period of living in France. It is great to imagine how he will be used in his country when he returns. He has become a close friend and we will follow him in this new chapter of his life. He is just learning email and other techno habits.

Always good food with my mix of friends in Marseille. North African cuisine is a favorite of everyone.

(image) For most of my time here in Marseille, we have all been enduring the installation of the new "Tramway." They hope to have it up and running by this summer. It has been a real mess up until now. The city is trying to become more of a tourist location. It has had a bad reputation in the past for crime etc...

Below is the main drag of Marseille (La Canebiere) heading down to the Old Port the center of the city proper.



At the end of January, Andy and I were able to attend a very significant conference on the Island of Malta. This was a first for the both of us. It was good to be together again and talk about ministry, and we made many significant contacts from all around the Mediterranean.

(image) We met up with a friend of ours and did alittle sightseeing as well. Malta is a facinating place.

(image) Malts old British buses are famous. They took us all around the main island and the island of Gozo. The historical significance of the the islands is remarkable.

Just one of the fabulous churches we visited during our stay. One church even claims to have the wrist bone of St Paul. This was the island were he was shipwrecked.

Christmas 2007


It was good to be in the US for Christmas this year with my brother and family. They have moved from California to Connecticut, so it has been a real transition.
I was glad to be able to chatch up a bit with their new life. We celebrated with my brother's in-laws as well. It was a good family time.

Just before the New Year we took a family trip in to NY City to see that decoration and the prelude to the big celebration.

Thanksgiving celebration


Two days after arriving "home" from the Istanbul consultation (below) I traveled up to Belgium to celebrate the American tradition of Thanksgiving. I was warmly invited by my friends the Fisks who I have known for many years (in the Congo). This is a good time to be with family and friends.


Istanbul conference and visits


Nov 11-14 found Mosaics colleagues and friends together in Istanbul for a consultation about sharing faith with in the Mosaics focus group. It was a consultation attended by over 100 participants working in countires from Afganistan to the US. We were encouraged and challenged by the materials and testimonies.
After the conference we were able to connect with friends in the city, one of whom I met during my French class this past summer. They helped us to see Turkey from an insiders point of view, and we had some great food as well.
The next day we visited the Blue Mosque and Saint Sophia, two of the most famous sites of the city.
Our hotel was well placed amidst many carpet shops,. The name of the hotel was "Hali" which means "carpet." And the breakfast terrace gave way to a beautiful view of the famous Mosques and the Bosphorus, the water way linking the Mediterranean with the Black sea.

Visit to Bosnia


This summer while I was attending a retreat I was invited and encouraged to visit two teams working in Bosnia. As I wrote email messages about this possibility it became more clear that this would be a good idea. I first visited the town of Mostar, which was devastated during the war. Many areas have been rebuilt, but there are still many destroyed building and signs warning of land mines.
The town of Mostar is divided in half by a river. One side of the river is populated mostly by Bosniacs and the other by Croatians.
The second town I visited was Travnik. It is a smaller town than Mostar and is mostly Bosniac. I was hosted by a team that has a vision for encouraging a faith community which is culturally relevant to the local people. They were a great encouragement to me and to our project as they seek to spread the Good News in this way.

Church Retreat


Each year the local churches have a "kick off" to the new school year with a retreat, called the "rentre'." We left from church in private vehicles and spent the day together in the country at a members vacation spot. It was nice to be together outside of the big city of Marseille. We had a service, lunch, hike and spent the afternoon talking and singing. It was a small group for our church but it was good to be together.
I was able to invite two friends, one from Algerian background and one a colleague visiting from Cameroon (in the hat and glasses).

French Class



French studies and visits


These weeks I am involved in a "refresher course" in French in the city of Aix en Provence, just a little ways outside of Marseille. Many people have asked,"you already speak French, why are you take a French course?" But as I use to say to our staff in Africa, language learning starts when you get off the plane in your country, and it ends when you leave. I am grateful to have some time to focus on language skills, and I am learning a great deal. The course runs July 17-Aug 4.

Just before the course started I had a visit from my colleagues Francisco and Stephanie Ramos. It was great to have then in Marseille to see a bit of what I do and what my suroundings are like. Here we are at the Pharo park looking over the old port.
At the end of July I had another trip to Belgium to connect with our colleague Karen Benson who was on her way back to Africa after a short visit in the US. Steve and Barb Swanson gratiously hosted us, and we did a day trip to the Holland coast.
Coffee break

Ministry options in Belgium


I have just returned from a 7 day trip to Belgium. The purpose of the trip was to explore some ministry possibilities along with a Covenant colleague. We were hosted by the Swansons and visited a number of ministry sites in Amtwerp, Ekeren and Ghent.

We also visited a Congolese church in Waterloo. They have connections with the CEUM church in Congo and are looking for ways to reachout to their Belgian neighbors. We had a great worship time.