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Your story: EMM alumni adventures
The privilege of being a missionary
Written by Phyllis Groff
After a total of 26 years serving with EMM in Maine, Guatemala, and Belize, Phyllis Groff and her husband Galen have retired this year. Here, Phyllis looks back on the missionary journey that spans over four decades of her life.
Sit and wait
Written by Colin Wenger
One of the hardest things for me to do when I was little was to sit and wait. I had nap time after lunch every day, but I never fell asleep. I would try my hardest to sit still, but I always had too much energy. I have trouble being still to this day — but that is exactly what God has been leading me to do lately. I know I'm not the only one to notice that our God has quite the sense of humor!
City of millions
Written by Sadie Beiler
“While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples. When the Pharisees saw this, they asked his disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” On hearing this, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners” (Matthew 9:10–13).
From Khmer to Karen
Written by Chris and Dawn LandesSince we served with EMM and MCC in Cambodia for seven years, the people of Southeast Asia have been close to our hearts. Living with our Cambodian brothers and sisters, we worked with education, youth ministries, and the local church. During that time, our priority was learning the language, culture, and story of the Khmer, a people who had lived through genocide and 20 years of war. Our end goal was to encourage and build up local leadership among them.
A heart and a home for Somali refugees
Written by Emily Jones
Lancaster City has recently become known as “America’s refugee capital,” following a report by the BBC which said that Lancaster takes in 20 times more refugees per capita than the rest of the U.S. Meet Barbara Witmer, one Lancaster City resident whose longstanding commitment to refugee resettlement has affected hundreds of lives.
I was sure I would die: Arlene Kreider's story of fear and inner trust while living in Ethiopia
Written by Emily Jones
In the 1970s, a Marxist military group called the Derg gained control of Ethiopia by force. There followed several years of civil unrest, in which gunfire seemed to resound beyond every horizon, friends and neighbors were divided by fear and betrayal, and the church was forced deep underground.
What is your breath prayer?
Written by Karen Baker
Last year, Karen Baker and her family moved back to the U.S. after serving for three years as EMM missionaries in a rural area of Guinea-Bissau. Here are some of her reflections since coming home.
A sweet warmth: cultivating a domestic church
Written by Sarah Gingrich
Coming home late, I can smell if he has already prayed. The beeswax candles leave a sweet warmth in the air for hours. It is always long after the children have been put to bed, with prayers and kisses and toddlers finding their second wind's second wind. It is in that decisive moment between reading one more chapter or laying the book down and heading to bed. We often wait too long, and we go sleepily to our prayer corner, yawning.
After West Africa: my story of becoming a missionary at home
Written by Nathanael Thorne
My name is Nathanael Thorne. I am 24 years old and a full-time student and employee. I served on a YES team for a nine-month assignment to Guinea Bissau, West Africa.
The unexpected mentor
Written by Amber Huber
When a little old lady caught my eye, I didn’t think much of it. I was praying for a mentor, someone to walk with me through the seasons of life. The tiny woman wouldn’t have appeared intimidating under any circumstances, but it’s awkward, a tad scary, to ask someone to journey with you in life. I only knew her name. I assumed she was a Christian (she seemed to pray before her meals ... or maybe she dozed off, I didn’t actually know). I figured God had helped me to notice her. What would it hurt to ask her?
The risk of community service
Written by Twila FisherIn January, Twila Fisher became The Hill School’s first manager of community and economic development. The Pottstown, Pa., prep school sought to strengthen the surrounding neighborhood of Hobart’s Run. With passion and dedication, Twila has been working hard to revitalize the community. Here, Twila reflects on the challenges and Christian foundations of community development.
“I don’t know a lot of things, but I do know what community looks like,” I said emphatically while combing over the faces of local leaders in the room. They nodded softly with understanding smiles.
Showing Christ on the family farm
Written by Jeff and Kendra Nissley
Making sure the kids have free time, bringing employees life instead of burnout, sacrificing valuable work time to make space for relationships. Jeff and Kendra Nissley can tell you that operating a family farm with a missional mindset isn’t easy. Today the Jubilee Dairy owners talk about restful living vs. to-do lists, building up their workers, and finding the unique ways that they can serve through farming.
Send in YOUR story!
We know you've got one. One story and a photo or two -- a glimpse of your life, reflections, whatever. Send us 300 -- 500 words for possible use in Your story and on Facebook.
Staying in touch
We love learning about how God is extending His kingdom through alumni after they complete service with EMM. Please submit the names of EMM alumni whose lives would help inspire all of us to keep moving in mission.
Notes about alumni marriages, births, and achievements are also welcome! We will publish stories of inspiring alumni and announcements of marriages, births, and achievements in Missionary Messenger, our bimonthly magazine, as space permits.