From May 14 to June 5 twenty-four members of the Faith Chorale will have the opportunity to take the gospel message to the Netherlands and Germany. They will work alongside the missionaries there, doing anything they can to assist them in their work. Their main ministry will be the informal concerts in the marketplaces and the formal concerts in churches. The Chorale’s past European tours have greatly enlarged the evangelistic endeavors of the missionaries.
Jennifer Swedberg, a freshman in the Sacred Music program, is a part of this year’s European team. These are her thoughts:
Q: Where did you grow up?
A: I grew up in Olimpia, Brazil, the southern part of Brazil where my parents are missionaries.
Q: What do your parents do there?
A: My parents have mainly been involved with church planting. My dad has worked as an editor for a Regular Baptist Press in Brazil and has taught theology at a Bible college. My mom has taught music appreciation at the Bible college.
Q: Growing up in Brazil and now heading to Europe for 3 ½ weeks, what do you see as being the biggest difference or adjustment?
A: I am very blessed to have grown up learning more than one culture. It will be good for me to see yet another culture and work on learning from the people in it. The culture in Europe, I’m sure, is much different than Brazilian culture. They are not as openly affectionate there as they are in Brazil, and it takes more time to gain their trust. That will be an adjustment for me.
Q: What are you most looking forward to about the European Chorale tour?
A: I love singing, and I’m excited to get to know the other Chorale members better and the believers there in the churches.
Q: What do you think will be your greatest challenge?
A: I think my greatest challenge will be talking to people I have never met before. Creating conversation has always been a challenge for me.
Q: What are you doing now to prepare for this ministry?
A: I am praying for this ministry and anticipating what I’m going to learn. We’re working hard on our music now so we can be adequately prepared both for our tour.
Q: What is one thing you are praying God will do through you/your team while you are there?
A: I am praying we will be an encouragement to the believers. I know that the situation is tough for the missionaries in Europe, because the people are more closed to the gospel than in other cultures. The believers can easily be discouraged by the lack of converts in Europe, and I hope that we will be an encouragement to them.
Q: Why did you decide to become part of the European tour?
A: I love singing and I love the ministry of Chorale.
Please pray for the Chorale as they prepare for their European ministry. You may contribute to the expenses of this trip by call our Advancement Office at 1.800.409.3305.
Reaching Halfway around the World
Thirteen students and staff from Faith left campus on May 13 bound for South Africa and three weeks of hands-on ministry with missionaries, national pastors, and orphans. A semester’s-worth of training and preparation for the team was led by graduate and two-time team veteran, Tyler Terlouw. Team members were Julia Bray, Jared Callison, Alex Chavez, Grace Clement, Nick Harsh, Brenda Hendrickson, Paige Henggeler, Tim Jones, Ciara Kittelson, Ellen Odle, Seth Rosekopf, and Kimmy Terlouw.
Their first ministry was in an Indian suburb of Durban. The team was involved in church repair and painting projects as well as outreach into the community. Their enthusiasm for ministry and love for South Africa only grew as the team spent the second leg of their journey in the rural farming community of Kokstad where they were involved in a variety of ministries connected with a church, Christian school, church plant, hospital, and orphanages.
The final leg of the team’s ministry took place at Bethesda Children’s Village near Pretoria where the team lived on the property of an orphanage and spent hours each day living, working alongside, and loving orphans and the families taking care of them. Building deep, rich relationships with believers on the other side of the ocean and having the opportunity to “bear one another’s burden” was a privilege and a blessing that this team brought home with them.
“There’s something really special and humbling about being a part of a project that impacts time and eternity. It was awesome to see a church plant’s building that our team helped to start a year ago come full circle this summer. The building is completed and is now a tool to reaching a community where the Gospel has not been preached. God’s people can accomplish great things together for His glory, and we got to experience that firsthand!”
“My favorite part of the trip was pouring out my love to the orphans in each of the orphanages. As we were playing with them, it immediately hit me that these kids were so happy with how much we loved them, but just imagine if they had hope and knew how much our Lord Jesus Christ loves them. What a privilege it was to share His love with them!
One thing that has really been impressed upon my mind as a result of the South Africa trip is the reality that God is working all over the world. Many times it is easy for me to go through life with blinders on and not be aware of what God is doing right next to me, but I was reminded through this trip that God is so much bigger than me. He is bigger than Iowa, and He is bigger than the United States. He is working in a big way ALL around the world, and to think that He still uses me is a humbling thought. How great is MY God!
The highlight of the trip for me was visiting the village of Horseshoe, a small slum town, and going to a dirty, crowded tent for a Sunday church service. Worshipping alongside those South African believers was absolutely amazing. They literally had absolutely NOTHING, and yet they gave their tithes and offerings to God and worshiped Him with true sincerity. The body of Christ became so real to me that day!
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Alumnus of the Year Awards
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Dr. Jeff Newman Recognized for 25 Year of Service
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Dr. Douglas Brown Named New Seminary Dean
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Carrie Augsburger Appointed Dean of Women
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Dr. Daniel Brown Appointed to Seminary Faculty
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