During the last 2 days of the consultation, Rhonda and Maegan joined two different planning groups – principal training and school multiplication. Rhonda’s group included the Ivory Coast delegation plus Jean Claude from Switzerland so there was discussion in French (with interpretation) and English.
Maegan enjoyed meeting Edward who is the international administrator for an accreditation agency which comes alongside schools with an accreditation process.
This special lady ministers in education through YWAM Uganda Family Ministry. We were blessed with others to support her fundraising for the costs of the consultation and next week’s conference. She made most of the items pictured here, selling them to raise funds.
We ended the week asking the Lord to show us how He’d have us partner with the College of Education as they develop training for principals currently running schools and those about to start schools. It will be exciting to see how He continues to lead us all.
This YWAM base is amazing. At the back is a structure which reminds me of my days spent in Calcatta mansion back on the pioneer ministries base in Honolulu before I came to Japan. I especially like the cross on the roof!!
This morning I spent most of my time upgrading my snap chat skills, taking lessons from my Sensei. You can see from the picture he is way ahead of me. He left with his family right after lunch so I have time to practice my new skills before we meet again in Pattaya.
Rhonda and I decided to get our constitutional and walked to the Lotus store to buy some needed supplies for our next week of meetings. It was about half an hour’s walk each way. It was interesting to see how the meat was set out, not in the nice neat small packages we are used to back in Japan.
While searching for almond and soya milk we ran into an American man from San Francisco married to a Thai lady from Fang. They took time to help us in our search. It was most pleasant and altogether we had about a forty five minute interchange. We were originally going to eat at the store but as our talking took longer than expected we decided to return to the base.
Having taken a reasonable time to recuperate from all that walking, we decided to put a wash on and try out the local KFC. It is much cheaper here than in Japan. In the laundry room we met this lovely lady also from Fang. She remembered me from the time I visited our very first Bi-Lingual DTS outreach team and we visited the orphanage where she was working.
What are the chances of meetings two different ladies from a village over six hours train ride from where we are staying???
Feeling rather hungry we headed out into the brightly light streets to find KFC. Crossing that road was quite a challenge but we did make it OK.
Just in case you don’t believe we were both there, I took this selfie. I promise you that I did not use photo shop.
It took awhile after ordering our food for it to arrive, so I found myself sitting accross the table from my beautiful wife and could not resist taking a picture of this breath taking moment.
Mark (College of Education dean) and Lisa Orvis (College teacher trainer) with others led us through a week of processing what is involved in starting new schools. It was a great time of sharing our experiences in starting schools and discussing what training, resources, and tools would have been helpful.
Towards the end of the week we formed groups according to the kind of school we would like to start, mine being a school for missionary children. It was wonderful to partner with an administrator and two teachers involved in schools in Ghana, Cambodia, and Kona, Hawaii as we discussed mission statements and school governance.
On Thursday this team of educators from Ivory Coast arrived after some visa difficulties almost caused them to miss their flight. Their delay, though, allowed them to share about the university’s teacher training program with a national leader of denominational schools who now wants that for their teachers! The team itself has two denominational heads of education and the teacher training program leader for Ivory Coast.
So I will begin this post by introducing our room pet, Michal. He is here every day and is hopefully keeping the mosquito population at bay.
Then I need to introduce our neighbours in the next room. We have come to know them quite well, not just because the walls are rather thin, so one can easily hear everything that is being discussed but because we also worked together making the name tags and have interacted during meals almost every day. Suzanne seemed to be in charge of logistics.
Tonight we went out for diner with them too, which made for a good bonding time. This is Rhonda with Kendra. She is the older sibling.
Cayden took time to introduce me to snap chat and has been a rather patient teacher for one very slow learner.
Hopefully I can put these skills to use in the not to distant future. I have already learnt how to add Harrison so I was able to double my contacts on my very first day.
Mark Brokenshire, International Dean of YWAM’s University of the Nations College of Education, leading our international gathering of 30 educators representing schools in 14 nations (Switzerland, Ghana, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Cambodia, Australia, Ivory Coast, United States, Argentina, and Japan) in the importance of developing the Biblical culture of shalom in our learning communities.
In the evenings we are on our own for meals. Being adventourous pioneer missionaries we headed out to the local food market to see what we could find.
Being as we are from Japan and that has majorly impacted our food choices we discovered and selected the Thai sushi store. It even says sushi on the lantern behind Rhonda’s head in the picture. 寿司🍣
Here is the plate we decided on. Our first Thai market meal adventure was good!!!!!
Today I decided to wear my batik shirt from Indonesia. It fits with my colourful personality and also shows my favourite colour.
The shirt quickly attracted the attention of a participant from Indonesia who requested a photo together. So I have discovered a new way to make friends, wear clothes from another country!!
It seems that even the local orchids enjoy displaying the colour of my shirt.
At lunch time we were visited by Linda Herman, a long time friend who has served with YWAM here in Thailand for several many years. Linda is from Vancouver and attended the same Church when Rhonda and I got married.
First day of the Education Conference. There were about thirty attendees from several many different nations. Breakfast was from 07:00 which I found to be very reasonable.
I met a brother from Fiji who knows Mosese from YWAM Tokyo. Apparently they met at the same YWAM base in Fiji.
I also met another brother from Indonesia whom Rhonda had met previously at a different education event. He comes from Malang where our Bi-Lingual DTS did their outreach.
I found a few chances to help with the set up tables and make name tags. I even recruited a name tag buddy to help get it all done in time.
Rhonda jumped into everything and was in her element interacting with fellow educators.
Sharing experiences in education in groups of two.
Reporting on the groups sharing about what was important to them in starting schools.
At the end of the day Rhonda and I were able to go out and celebrate with a nice nice birthday meal. The restaurant even gave us a 10% discount as it was my birthday. What a nice way to end the day.
Today Rhonda and I both had to get up before 06:00 in order to catch the bus, that would enable us to catch the trains, that would enable us to get to Haneda airport and catch our 10:30 flight to Bangkok.
As you can see we made it safely and here we are checking in at Haneda. This too went very smoothly and enabled us to make use of a wonderful facility at the arrivals area one floor down.
YESSSSSSSS!!!! Tulley’s coffee can now be enjoyed at Haneda. The good news is that it is usually open 24/7. My standard Cafe Latte is on the table while Rhonda is seen pouring her decafinated black coffee. Not too sure how that is supposed to keep one awake but she really seemed to enjoy it.
Fortified for the five-and-a-half hour flight we easily cleared both the security and immigration checks and proceeded to our gate. Yep! That’s our plane.
Right after take off we were treated to a nice view if Mount Fuji. Other than that our flight was pretty uneventful.
The good news is that we arrived safely and were able to easily locate the YWAM Bangkok base. Now we are holed up in our very nice accommodations- with air conditioning I might add. The bad news is that arriving rather tired, so far, I have not taken any photos here in Thailand. Maybe tomorrow……..