Thursday, August 24, 2006

Fresh X at Seneca Rocks!
Here's a cool picture from my (Lisa) weekend at Seneca Rocks, WVA on OWU's Freshman Experience (otherwise known as "Fresh X"). Ryan Carlson, our director of Wilderness Ministries, invited me to serve as the food coordinator. It was a terrific opportunity to come alongside some amazing student leaders as they befriended and guided incoming freshman through their transition into college.

There were about 60 students who participated in everything from service (cleaning and panting at the National Park), to hiking, rock climbing, white water rafting, and backpacking. Before you become impressed with my sudden passion for the wilderness, I stayed in a bunkhouse all weekend. Mattress, showers, electricity... my kind of wilderness. There were a lot of bugs though! Yuck.

It was the perfect transition for myself back into the swing of campus ministry after an amazing summer in Ireland. It reminded me of my passion for college students and their journey into adulthood. We had the most friendly and outgoing group of students. They were also very "gamey", playing every game they learned from kindergarten on. It was a blast to see young adults laughing and playing without pause to think about what they looked like to their peers. No trendy clothes, no make-up (barely bathed actually), no alcohol, no drugs, just nature and tons of safe people. Our student leaders stepped up and made a difference for a few incoming freshman, shaping their entire college career for the better. I am so grateful for the opportunity to witness their work.

By the way, Luong started classes yesterday, so he would covet your prayers! A new school year means a new crop of not so eager 8th graders to teach. Golf is well underway and we're off to Indiana this weekend to celebrate birthdays with the family (mine is Saturday... 34 shhh).

God Bless
The Hos
(PS my friend Suzanne thought that was a great "sound off" so I'm going to use it every time!)

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Welcome to our new home... well at least our new "virtual" home. Physically, we are back in Delaware, Ohio after spending a month in Ireland serving with the Corrymeela community. Check out our blog at for pictures and reflections. We experienced fellowship, fun, and the love of our brothers and sisters in Christ from all over the world! Thanks to everyone who left their mark on our lives. We will never be the same!

We come home with a new appreciation of "home". Not the house we live in (although, it's pretty dang cute), but the place where we are, right now. Rich Mullins often spoke of this concept in his lyrics. In "Sometimes By Step" he spoke of Abraham, "He was a stranger in this land, And I am that, no less than he". And, of Christ, in his song "You Did Not Have a Home" he said,
"Birds have nests, foxes have dens But the hope of the whole world rests On the shoulders of a homeless man You had the shoulders of a homeless man And the world can't stand what it can't own And it can't own You 'Cause You did not have a home"

Home ownership is a status of "arriving"
in the U.S.. Being homeless is a curse. I witnessed that firsthand in May when we visited CCNV, the nations largest homeless shelter. But what does "home" mean? Well, to us, it is a calling. An investment, not in bricks and mortar, but in people and community. Jesus knew that and therefore wasn't concerned with the physicality of his home, but those with whom he lived, and dined, and played, and served. They defined his home. And we are redefining what home is for us.

Join us on the journey, be at home with us wherever we are.

God Bless
The Hos
'Cause You did not have a home