Thursday, November 29, 2007

Farnsworth Fruit Orchard

Come to Guam and visit our fruit orchard!

We have three banana trees. Guam local bananas was smaller and slighly sweeter than bananas in the USA. We pay 98 cents a pound for them here, and we have missed the cheap Ecuadorian bananas. Now we shall see if we have our own bananas.

Marisol is overjoyed to have a papaya tree. It reminds her of Ecuador.

We have at least five kalamansi trees where we live. Kalamansi is kind of a cross between orange and lemon. It makes wonderful juice.

Here Joel and Amelia are helping to make kalamansi juice without making too much of a mess. Joel is a wonderful help. Amelia seems more interested in her baby.

Thank you to our helpers!

We invited our student helpers from our moving day with a fish dinner on Monday night. We had a wonderful time. Thanks again to Ethel, Johanna, Neinei, Jayvina, Jonathan, Mark, Benny, and Sonny!
Jonathan especially enjoyed the three milk cake which he graciously grinded the fresh coconut for. Sonny thought his joy was hilarious!

A Day for Thanks

Hi there, and Happy Belated Thanksgiving. These pictures are out of order, and I am sorry about that. Joel is thankful for good friends like Micah, who came to play with him on Thanksgiving afternoon. They had lots of fun.

Marisol and I are thankful for our little "cutie pies" Amelia (who is shown enjoying her turkey drumstick a la King Henry VIII). . . .

. . .and Joel (eating his cinnamin Jello salad courtesy of Mrs. Joyce Owen).

We are all thankful for our PIBC family. . .

. . .and for God's abundant provision of food always.

And we are thankful for you, our faithful blog readers and prayer warriors. Thanks, and God bless you, everyone!

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Swingset Mania

Last Monday Ned took down the swingset from our apartment. It was raining, and Ned isn't much of a Handy Man. But it is now done, and the children are enjoying playing on their swingset in the new house. In fact, as you can see from the picture, they are loving it.

Two Beauties!

Amelia now knows the names of the Disney Princesses, along with most of the little girls on the planet, I suppose. Cinderella is "Rella," Snow White is "White," and Sleeping Beauty is "Beauty." Here is a picture of two PIBC beauties, Amelia (of course I am an unbiased father!) and our Library Assistant, Stella Fatag from Yap. She is not only beautiful on the outside, but she has a heart that is filled with love for the Lord and her neighbors. She sent us this picture, and we wanted to share it with you.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Spiritual Life Retreat

Last weekend we held our annual PIBC Spiritual Emphasis Retreat at Rios Beach in southern Guam.

The first thing Marisol, Joel and Amelia did was check out the beach.

Instead of oversaturating the students with more group Bible sessions, Melissa prepared a prayer journal for them with Bible passages, and we sent them off by themselves for two hours of quiet time.

I was so proud of the students to see them spend time alone with God. Solitude is not really a part of Micronesian culture, which is community based.

While the students were off by themselves, Delight, Hiob and Evelyn were busy cooking hamburgers and hotdogs.

Even Joel got into the action by helping to keep our cooks stocked with food.

This is a quiet moment of Mamá with her niños Joel and Amelia. The kids are wearing the official Spiritual Emphasis Retreat Tshirts, which cost $5. I think they turned out really well.
This is American football Guam style!!! Too bad our president Dave Owen wasn't back from his PIBC staff and financial supporters recruiting trip to the US and had to miss that. He is a real football afficionado.

This was Amelia's second straight year to take her beach naps in a hammock that Marisol made for her.

Joel enjoys a moments with Anisa, women's dorm resident assistant and student in my Youth and Children class.

Amelia wanted us to close the zipper until it was closed, of course! Then she wanted out. . .and FAST!!!!

Row, row, row your boat, gently down the ocean!!! Except there's a problem when you don't have a boat. It makes for a fun picture, though.

Marisol "goes swimming" with Micah and Joel.

On Sunday morning we had a sunrise praise and worship time on the beach. . .

. . .led by Mac and Pastor Hiob, who is PIBC's Director of Spiritual Life.

Amelia and Joel clapped along in praise to the Lord! It was a wonderful weekend. Special thanks to Hollie Schaub for all of her hard work and to Melissa Heck for writing a wonderful quiet time guide. Ladies, I am impressed, and it is an honor to work with you!!!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Movin' on up

Here is a collage of pictures from our recent move. We moved today and had wonderful weather, a respite from all the rain we've been having. God is so good. Thanks for all of your prayers. The children seem to be happy in their new surroundings.

Amelia has kept us entertained with her everlasting cuteness. Sorry, Daddy Bragging going on here!
Amelia and Joel are checking out the new windows at the house where we now live.

The kids are sitting on Amelia's bed waiting for their parents to finish unpacking some things. They have been so patient throughout this whole process.

Joel has wanted to help move things. Amelia, too! Bless their little hearts.

We asked some of the guys to help us today to move the "BIG" things, like this sofa, for example. Thank to Mamu (from Bangladesh), Jonathan (Chuuk), Sonny (Yap), Benny (Marshall Islands), and Mark (Chuuk).

Jayvina is a good friend to Joel and Amelia and helped us today as well. She's also a great packer and unpacker.

Our first visitors in the new house were Johanna, Neinei, Paulynne, and Alicia. They helped us watch the kids and unpack some things. We feel very blessed by the PIBC community, both students and staff who has supported us through this change. Thanks, God!

All the World's a Stage

Last week we enjoyed seeing the Pacific Gate unit of Covenant Players twice, once at Joel's Awana Club on Halloween and the other time at the chapel of PIBC. For those of you who have seen the Players, you know what a treat we enjoyed twice, without the trick. Last year I also saw them in action during their annual stay in Guam at Christmas time. This professional Christian drama troupe deploys different drama teams to different areas of the world, performing the timeless plays written by their late founder, Charles Tanner. I heartily recommend them. For more information, check out their website at

Monday, November 5, 2007

Direct from Germany

Recently we had the privilege of hosting a Liebenzell Mission-sponsored German tour group on campus. Here our students are greeting them in their various native languages. Notice Marisol in the red shirt representing Ecuador. Other countries represented are China, the Philippines, Chuuk, Yap, Palau, Pohnpei, the Marshall Islands, the United States and Bangladesh. Currently we also have students from Japan and Korea, but they did not attend the program.

As usual, the students sang with their beautiful harmonies. Even Joel and his Palauan friends Micah and Ganya joined in. It was a great evening together!

Work, work, work!

Every other Monday the PIBC students have a work day for two hours from 8:00-10:00 am. They clean up the campus inside the buildings and out. We help sometimes, even though it's my day off. I must admit that I did not help today. Saturday I drove the van all day, transporting the students back and forth to the Lutheran Church for a fundraising carwash. And yesterday was an even longer day: one of the vans had a flat tire in the morning when we were trying to leave for church; then the other van broke down when I was going to pick up the students from church. I spent all afternoon going back to the van to wait for the tow truck and then I accompanied him to the mechanic's. I took today to rest and pack for our upcoming move.

Here is a picture from a previous work day. Joel posed with his friend Breechlyn or NeiNei who watches him and Amelia during our classes on Wednesday and Friday mornings. Not only does she serve as one of the two female Resident Assistants at PIBC, She also is a good friend to our kids.

Smileen demonstrates the fine art of flowerbed weeding.

As you can see, Jayvina does wonders with a rake. Believe it or not, the male students also work on the PIBC work days. Next time I will need to take some pictures of them.

Students Take on Children's Ministry

My Youth and Children class has been out and about Guam doing children's ministry in different church settings. We recently participated in a Saturday morning kids club at the Pacific Missionary Fellowship Church, affiliated with Pacific Missionary Aviation, as well as a Baptist children's ministry outreach to the Chuukese community in Mangilao. Activities included songs, crafts, games, Bible stories, and even baking cookies for the snack. I was proud of both of my groups and pray that they continue to use their talents for the Lord.

NBA Guam Style

Some of our male students at PIBC play on a church basketball league on Saturday mornings. I don't normally attend their games because I drive the Island Girl Power ladies to their ministry, but one Saturday our neighbor Melissa asked me to take them because she wasn't feeling well. I helped to drive last fall, and I enjoyed watching them play again. They are having a much better season this year with multiple wins; last year they won only one game. Who knows? There may be a future NBA star among them. Melissa makes a very nurturing Basketball Mama, and she is a great cheerleader! Way to go, Melissa and PIBC men! Keep up the good work!

An Unexpected Visitor

Recently Flat Stanley came to visit us in Guam. He arrived courtesty of our friend Reed, whose class is studying different communities around the world. It was our job to take Stanley around to different places in Guam and have his picture taken. We took him to Ypao Beach and to Fort Agueda. We also filled out a short report about Guam for Reed's class to study. We enjoy having visitors, and Stanley was no exception. Bon Voyage. May the U.S. Postal Service give you a good trip back to Ohio.