Monday, June 21, 2010

Final PIU Frontier

I don't usually write about my own personal feelings on the blog. However, today I will make an exception. These have been some difficult days for our family as we get ready to leave our home in Guam. I say home because even though we came as temporary workers to Pacific Islands Bible College (now Pacific Islands University) back in September 2006, we quickly put down roots.

It has been a blessing to grow and learn along with our fellow PIU staff members who quickly became family to us. They supported us as our children grew, became surrogate aunts and uncles, grandmas and grandpas. We can't thank them enough for their contribution to our lives, both personally and professionally. The students became big brothers and sisters to Joel and Amelia, and the other staffs' children became fast friends.

Now it's time to move on. We kept postponing the thoughts in our minds, but as we bought tickets last week, we can't put off the idea of transition any longer. Marisol and I have been pushing the tears away because we don't want to make this more difficult for the kids. We went to see Toy Story 3 on Saturday thanks to the generosity of a friend from our church who gave us free tickets. The movie is not for kids on one level: it shows how the toys deal with change when their owner Andy goes off to college. It that sense it is sad. It allowed me some time to sit there in the dark theatre and weep. Thank you, Walt Disney and Pixar! We are glad that we have God to help us navigate through all these HUGE changes. We appreciate your prayers for us. We need them, now more than ever.

For my final PIU class on May 7, 2010, I bought McDonald's breakfast food for the students. We had a great semester together in Youth and Children. I learned from them as much as they learned from me. Below are some pictures from our final PIU Staff Prayer Meeting. At the end everyone laid their hands on us and prayed for the future that God has in store. Talk about basking in the love of our friends as well as God's love.

Zach, Mamu and Kalvin enjoyed the food at the prayer meeting. Always lots of food choices.

Joel and Amelia, of course, will miss their PIU staff children friends, including Miriam (pictured).

We will miss the wonderful fellowship times and PIU staff sing times. The PIU staff and faculty sound lovely when they sing together. We will miss the PIU singers. Thanks for all the great memories.

Entertaining Angels Unawares

One of our favorite things is entertaining friends at our home and even being entertained sometimes (thanks to the Choram family). Here are some pictures:

Two of our favorite grandfather figures at PIU came to visit us earlier in the year: Grandpa Steve and Uncle Harald. Both of them have inspired us through their lives and Christian testimonies.

Our Mexican friends from church, Jose and Monica, came over a couple months ago. No, we didn't make Mexican food for them. I feel a little funny cooking Mexican for Mexicans. Can you relate?
We asked our new missionary friends who work with Campus Crusade for Christ in Fiji to come to lunch after Caleb spoke in the PIU chapel. Caleb is from Pohnpei; Rose is Filipina. Their daughters played so nicely with Joel and Amelia. It is a blessing to know them.

Eric, Karyn, Katie and Noelle helped us celebrate my birthday (and Eric's too) at Outback Steakhouse.

Evelyn, who worked with me in Student Life when I first came to PIU, and her husband Delight, who was my travel buddy in Chuuk, came to eat dinner with us before they left on the Voices of Micronesia tour in the States. We had a grand time with them.
This time Iotaka and Vivian and their daughters Ann Marie, Louann, and Leann treated us to dinner at King's. I had the most delicious grilled salmon sandwich of my life.
Roland, Bill and Christel visited us a few weeks ago. Roland the "Mango Man" brought us four bags of mangoes. Yum, yum, yummy!
Today our friend Suzanne visited us. She trains the PIU teachers to be more effective in the classroom. I have learned so much from her expertise and experience. She also is good with kids like Joel and Amelia.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Oh, How the Years Go By

On Saturday morning we revisited a favorite swimming spot that we hadn't been to in a while. It was one of the first places we went as a family to the beach when we arrived in Guam back in September 2006.

Here is a picture of then

and now. You can really see how our children have grown and changed.

Joel and I swam out to walk on the reef. Guam has a "fringing reef," which means that the reef starts close to the shoreline.
Amelia practiced her swimming strokes.

There was a nice rock to sit on. We had a fun time remembering the past and making new memories. We will miss the beautiful beaches and clear ocean water in Guam. We are enjoying it until we leave.

From Our Family to You: Happy Father's Day!

Happy Father's Day to all you fathers out there. Your job is very important. No matter how it may seem, it is NOT in vain. Do it to the best of your ability, with God's help!

Friday, June 18, 2010

The Pacific Islands Dispatch June 2010

Welcome to our last Pacific Islands Dispatch! We are leaving the tropics of Guam on June 30. After making two stops along the way (Pohnpei and Hawaii) to visit friends, since it didn’t increase the price of our plane tickets, we will arrive in PA on the afternoon of July 5 for our home ministry assignment. Then in 2011 we will return to Ecuador to work with the Liebenzell team.

Although we truly believe in our hearts that this is God’s will for our family, I feel a surge of deep sadness at the thought of leaving the ministry of Pacific Islands University and our friends. We have spent four years here. I realized the other day that I have lived almost 10% of my life in Guam, Marisol more than 10%, and Guam is really the only home that Joel and Amelia remember. Moving on is not easy.

Please pray with us for the following things:

1. That God will help us through this BIG change with grace and patience.
2. That Joel and Amelia will be able to make new friends in the USA.
3. That God will continue to work in the life of Davy, a young man that Ned mentored during the spring semester.
4. That God will guide the PIU staff as they prepare for the 2010-11 school year.
5. That God will provide the increased financial support that we will be seeking during our furlough.
6. That God will smoothly pave the way for our return to Ecuador.
7. That we will seize opportunities to share our faith with others.

Thank you for your prayers and support. We appreciate you very much.

With love,
Ned, Marisol, Joel and Amelia Farnsworth

Mission Address: Liebenzell Mission USA, PO Box 66, Schooley’s Mountain NJ 07870-0066

Mailing Address (after June 30): 861 Schoffers Rd, Birdsboro PA 19508-9464, 610-582-8046,,

Thursday, June 17, 2010

World Cup 2010

We discovered World Cup Mania in Saipan during our recent trip.
Although Ecuador did not qualify for the 2010 World Cup in Africa, we still wanted to show our spirit by wearing our Ecuador soccer shirts. May the best team win, although the games are not telecast here in Guam unless you have cable. We do not!

Tsunami Swim Club

Joel and Amelia will really miss the Tsunami Swim Club. When they started, they knew nothing about swimming. Now they are doing very well. We must try to find swimming classes for them in PA.

Joel racing with his friend Roxanne.

Joel doing the backstroke.

Joel's coach Iijima is firm yet kind. Joel has learned so much from him.

This is Ken, one of the club's graduating seniors and considered to be the best male swimmer in Guam, speaking to the crowd at the end of year swim party. He will be going to Japan to swim and study later this year. We wish him all the best. He is a very nice guy and treats everyone with kindness and respect.
Amelia with her new swim teacher/assistant.
Amelia in the hot tub with her teacher Miss Kauro.
This is Joel with the entire swim club, at least the ones who were present on the day the picture was taken. Amelia's class wasn't part of the picture. Joel is seventh from the right in the front row.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Pineapple Time

On March 13 Marisol came running into the house and told me to go outside; she wanted to show me something. I followed her and saw the reason for her excitement: a pineapple was growing on two of our plants. Here you can see what I saw that day.

By April 17 it had grown this big.

Here is the pineapple on June 5. We are still optimistic that it may be ripe before the time comes for us to go to PA for our furlough. Who knows?

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Stitches Out

Thanks for everyone's prayers for Amelia's chin. The stitches are out, courtesy of Dr. Perez, and Amelia likes to show off her scar. It will be a Guam memory for her.

Swim like Fishes

Joel and Amelia have really enjoyed their time at the Tsunami Swim Club. They will miss it. We hope to find a place for them to swim in PA and then in Ecuador. These are some older pictures. I'll try to post some newer ones before we leave Guam.