Extreme Makeover theme sparks renewal at Italian retreat

January 5, 2012

The annual retreat/vacation for Italian Mennonites took place this summer on the “heel” of Italy among the pine groves that shade the Ionic seacoast. Participants convened from extreme ends of Italy, from Turin in the north to Sicily in the south, with most coming from central Italy—representing various church affiliations. Following prayer time each morning, […]

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Service sows passion to see German youth grow in God

January 3, 2012

In reflecting over this past year on my mission-intern assignment in Kaiserslautern, Germany, I have been astounded in God revealing more of the passions and skills He has placed in me. I have the opportunity and blessing to live with nine Germans currently between the ages of 16-19 years old. The youth live here for […]

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The difference between hope and despair: refugees in Ecuador

January 1, 2012

As I was enjoying the company of a few Ecuadorian friends in late June, my cell phone unexpectedly rang. The anxious Colombian voice on the other end explained the details of a dilemma that has become a common story since I began working with the Colombian refugee population in Ecuador in December of last year: […]

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Marie Shantal’s story: a very bad day in Haiti

December 30, 2011

Eight-year-old Marie Shantal went to school just like the other children in her middle class Haitian neighborhood on that fateful day in January 2010. But, as she walked home from school with her friends, the ground began to shake. Buildings fell around her. Thousands of people ran, screaming, into the streets! She got separated from […]

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Remember, remember not

December 6, 2011

One of the paradoxes of the Bible is God’s call to remember but not dwell on the past. “Remember that you were a slave in Egypt and the LORD your God redeemed you from there,” declares Deuteronomy 24:18 (NRSV). That memory forms the basis of Israel’s identity. When remembrance turns to nostalgia, however, God has […]

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Will you join us as we join God?

December 6, 2011

Christmas reminds us that God is on a mission. Our future and the future of the church rest entirely on our embrace of that mission. We start by discerning God’s activity in the world. Then we enthusiastically align our priorities with God’s. At VMMissions, God’s work takes many different forms. • Church planting efforts in […]

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Virginia youth build relationships with Jamaican community

November 22, 2011

On July 5, fourteen senior high youth and four adult leaders from Mountain View Mennonite church, in VMC’s Southern District, left the mountains of Virginia for the mountains of St. Elizabeth, Jamaica. We were going to do a work project in the Top Hill community, where Rodney & Lindsey Nice were serving as missionaries with […]

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Humility and growth: Partners in Mission turns 25

October 7, 2011

When I began working at VMM one year ago, the organization was in the midst of routine transition. A new strategic plan was in development, and several program directors were moving on from their posts. Like a plant entering a new season, the ongoing process of growth was being felt more acutely, in exciting and […]

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Lezha Academic Center opens first school year

October 3, 2011

The sounds of school ring loud and clear this September at Albanian Christian School’s Lezha Academic Center (LAC) in Lezhe, Albania. The city is located along the Adriatic Sea in the northwest corner of the country at the foothills of the Albanian Alps. Virginia Mennonite Missions has had a presence in this city of approximately […]

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Children in Bari, Italy, enjoy meaningful activities at “Happy Week”

September 19, 2011

What occupies the long summer days for children who live in high-rise apartment buildings in densely-populated Italian cities? Many parents ask this same question! In the South, parks are usually few, crowded, and poorly equipped. Apartments have limited space for active play. Recognizing this opportunity to meet a felt need, the Mennonite churches in Italy […]

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