Josh and Gabriel share a few words after the church community's meal on Sunday. Good conversations have been plentiful and helpful in discerning our future in the region.

Josh and Gabriel share a few words after the church community's meal on Sunday. Good conversations have been plentiful and helpful in discerning our future in the region.

  David, in blue, discusses Saint Francis of Assisi, the idea of being God'sn  instruments of peacemaking, and shares LCC's    Ukraine-Russia "flag story"    as an example. Also, Josh was asked to sit in for the worship music.

David, in blue, discusses Saint Francis of Assisi, the idea of being God'sninstruments of peacemaking, and shares LCC's Ukraine-Russia "flag story" as an example. Also, Josh was asked to sit in for the worship music.

It's official: we're serving with the Mennonite community in Barcelona!

For the past several months, we've been talking about Spain and, more specifically, Barcelona as our ultimate destination for service after working in Lithuania for four years. However, nothing was final until the church community had a chance to get to know us better and decide -- via consensus -- that they want us.

In upcoming posts, we'll describe in greater detail what our roles will be, but one excerpt from the proposed job description illustrates why this decision was being made with such caution:

We want to offer (and look forward to) blessings, enrichment and mutual growing -- both personal and communitarian -- in maturity and in number, working together in our hardest issues and improving our mutual abilities...as we become “one body.”
  Asher proves he can lose his hair and still be cute. There   has been no short supply of community members seeking   to hold him and give him lots and lots of love.

Asher proves he can lose his hair and still be cute. There has been no short supply of community members seeking to hold him and give him lots and lots of love.

In other words, could the local church community commit to us in the same way we vow to commit to them?

This makes the fact we were accepted without any reservations all the more significant!

To say we are excited would be an understatement. Both the metaphorical and physical embrace from the community has been unreal and it only stokes the fire that God ignited within us long ago. Whether you describe it as identifying your vocation or your calling, we feel like we're right where we're supposed to be.

The past week has been filled with so many meals, meaningful conversations, laughter,

singing, exploration, living in community, and prayer. Language has not been an issue -- Josh's Spanish is serving well, Alisha is learning lots, and Asher's cuteness overcomes all boundaries.

 

NEXT STEPS

  The first Sparrows concert in Barcelona just outside the church building.

The first Sparrows concert in Barcelona just outside the church building.

In less than a week, we will be back in the United States. Between now and then, we will continue to meet with members of the community and take inventory on what life here will look like.

While we are quite excited about our future work in Spain, we are also eager to take advantage of this chance to reconnect with our North American family, friends,  and other supporters.

Our current travel plans are as follows:

  • July 12-17: Northern Indiana/Southern Michigan
  • July 17-24: Central Indiana
  • July 24: Phoenix Valley (Arizona)

If you're interested in connecting, please let us know! Just e-mail JoshuaSGarber@gmail.com or AlishaGarber@gmail.com and we'll work something out.

We also are still working on some needs and would appreciate any help we can get:

  No mic stand? No problem!

No mic stand? No problem!

  • A Place to Live: While in the Phoenix Valley, we need an affordable place to call home. If you have a spare room, consider letting us join you in community!Thanks to Brian and Natalie for your generosity here!
  • Home Furnishings:Do you have an extra couch, bed, or lamp lying around? Although we are fine "camping indoors," basic home furnishings would help make the rental house feel like a home.
  • Transportation: Phoenix is not the easiest place to travel using public transportation. Add a baby to that equation and things get downright challenging. Do you have an extra vehicle we could use? We're covered for Michigan and Indiana!
  • Part-Time Work: We have saved some money for resettling, but we'll be able to stretch it much further if we can supplement it with some additional income. Leads on flexible, part-time jobs would be much appreciated!
  • Baby Things: Although we have plenty of clothing, we are keeping an eye out for other things babies need, such as a car seat and stroller. We're set for Michigan and Indiana!
  • Help Networking: Are you connected with a church community? Maybe you can introduce us! The Trinity Mennonite Church community has faithfully supported us as we served in Lithuania the past four years. However, our work in Spain will require a larger budget to cover the increased cost of living and our additional family member, so we need to expand our fundraising network. Help here would be incredibly significant!

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