Only 10 more days in Bend!!! It’s hard to believe, but the time is upon us. We depart Bend on July 28th, for a three week training course at Missionary Training International near Colorado Springs, Colorado. The center was briefly evacuated due to the recent wildfires, but is now back in business. MTI is a lodge near Palmer Lake, Colorado which provides cross-cultural training for missionary families about to depart the US. We’ve heard nothing but great things about it, and are especially excited because our friends David and Rebecca Griffith will be training at the same time. David, Rebecca, and their children will be moving to Nairobi in the near future, only an hour away from Kijabe. We’re also looking forward to spending time with some old friends in Colorado Springs, though we’ve been saddened to learn that one of them has just fallen quite ill and is in the ICU. Instead of gathering around the dinner table, we may be praying around her hospital bed.
From Colorado, we’ll fly to Jenkintown, Pennsylvania, the World Harvest Mission Headquarters. Here we have the opportunity to sign our life away, again, and to receive prayer and encouragement from the seasoned warriors of WHM. That visit too will be punctuated by the chance to see good friends, as well as my cousins Erin and Kelly! This will be a brief stop, only a few days, and we depart the US on August 22.
Our next stop will be a visit with Ann’s family in Dublin. Our flight to Nairobi has a layover in London, and it’s less than an hour hop to Dublin, so we couldn’t pass up the chance to see Ann’s extended family before heading to Africa. Again, a very exciting stop, as Ann’s brother Stephen and wife Anna are expecting their first child. We’re praying for an on time delivery so we get to welcome the newest little Moran into the world. Following our visit to Dublin, we get back on the plane for the ten hour flight to Nairobi.
The flights into Nairobi arrive at night, and we’ve again been blessed with friends looking after us. Our friend Kent Hotaling has put us in touch with a wide variety of friends in Nairobi, and we’ve already been welcomed in to a lovely home as we get our feet on the ground. It should be quite a sight at the airport, as we try to juggle 22 suitcases, two kids, a dog, and our own anxiety!! We’ll plan on spending a couple of days in Nairobi, grocery shopping, etc, before making the beautiful drive up to Kijabe.
The highlight of all of this, as well as the greatest pains, come from friendships. While we’ll get to see close friends and family as we make our way to Nairobi, we’re dreading the final good byes here. We love our friends in Bend, we’ve loved our life here, and it’s miserable to think about leaving. We’re comforted, however, that we can come back to visit, and hopefully welcome many of them to our home in Kenya!