We have put together the first of what we hope are regular newsletters. You can download the .pdf version by clicking here.
A shout out to Susie for printing the hard copies for us. Know of anyone who should receive one of these in the mail? You perhaps? Let us know. So here we go . . .
The Hiebert’s April Newsletter:
Over a year ago, working overseas was nowhere on our radar but through a number of unique circumstances and with the encouragement of friends, our hearts and minds started to wander to far off people and places. In May of 2009 we contacted the people of Converge, a network of people with the Christian And Missionary Alliance in Canada (C&MA). They help in recruitment and the discernment process of those considering international work. We began the process of applying to be international workers, at the time, merely seeing where this would go. We submitted resumes, references, medical and psych evaluations. Angela worked on becoming accredited with the C&MA, and was successful. We asked many questions. Many questions were asked of us both within and outside of interviews and as a result, our family was brought before the President’s Cabinet of the C&MA to be recommended for appointment. From there, we were presented to the C&MA Board of Directors. We found out recently that the Board of Directors of the C&MA in Canada has appointed us as fully-funded International Workers in Church Ministry!
This hasn’t been as easy as it sounds. In fact, the process was arduous at times. More importantly, God has been doing major work in both our hearts through all of this. The obvious is that we would consider international work in the first place but the less obvious is that He has given us a deep love of people of all cultures and a desire to serve them as a family unit wherever and in whatever circumstances He places us. For now, we have been asked to be a part of a team that will move into Caracas, Venezuela in the future. What we will be doing and how ministry will look there has yet to be figured out. We are o.k. with this as we know more time is needed for us and our leaders to learn more about how best our family can serve.
All this is very exciting for us but there is a ‘but’. We have been approved for appointment pending our debt clearance. Yeah, unfortunately we still have a student loan that needs to be cleared. Being fully funded workers (living allowance provided by the C&MA Global Advance Fund) leaves no room to be in the field with debt. We are doing all we can to throw all we have at the student loan but admittedly, it is too much for us to clear on our own. If God wants us to go this year, He is going to make it happen.
If our debt is cleared by May 21, we will attend two weeks of Pre-Field Orientation at Ambrose University College in Calgary, June 6-17. We would have the rest of June and July to sell/give away all we have and pack up the rest, meet with people, and network with churches in our district. In August we will move to Costa Rica for a year to learn Spanish. After that year and until the team is ready to move into Caracas, we will likely move to Mexico City to continue work on our Spanish and partner in ministry with the local churches and C&MA team in place there.
If our debt is not cleared by May 21, our whole timeline will be pushed back by one year. We are o.k. with this. We are fully trusting in God’s timing. Yes, we are anxious to go, but we really love Summerland all the same and want to be involved in what God is doing here. It will be incredibly hard to leave. Our roots run deep as does our love for the people of Summerland.
We invite you to journey with us! Please pray for us. There is so much that needs to happen for us to go. We need to cling to Truth and press hard into Jesus both now and down the road, and we need your help in that. If you can commit to praying for us, please let us know. There is a list of prayer specifics on the left side of this page. Also let us know if you would like to receive updates.
Christ’s love compels us right now and as we look to the future.
We remain under His rich mercy and we remain yours, Chris, Angela, Mackenzie and Lukas