Gary served as Academic Dean for the last two years, managing the teaching faculty of ESEPA. His term has just come to an end; from now on he can concentrate more on teaching and writing. This gives him the chance to enjoy his new home office – his “Tower”, hidden away on the 3rd floor of the new house.
His new project in ESEPA is a master’s degree that he has been dreaming about: Masters in Pastoral Leadership. This will be our first degree aimed specifically at the person who is already an experienced pastor or church leader.
This year Gary was also working with Wycliffe Associates on an exciting project, helping write a new Bible translation manual. When finished, this will be translated into all 50 trade languages, and freely distributed in order to speed up Bible translation into new languages. It’s been a great opportunity to use his Greek and Hebrew training, as well as learn some new technical translation skills. He also served as interim pastor for an English-language congregation over the summer.
His two theology blogs now get about 15,000 hits a month. He has written particularly about the phenomenon of people setting dates for 2015 or 2016 for the Second Coming. See: http://www.openoureyeslord.com
This year has included some more “firsts” for Karen. Her teaching load at ESEPA has expanded to include 4 different sections of 3 courses, which is about 50 students per course. Definitely a record! This is also the first year she has traveled to teach in church satellite campuses. Since Sammy is just finishing first grade, it has been interesting to learn how to be a parent in the Costa Rican public education system!
Fortunately there were some familiar things: she taught the teen missionary kids again at the annual Honduras retreat, and enjoyed a blast from the past as interim pastor’s wife for several months.
There were big events too. We moved into a beautiful new rental house which was just built for entertaining. Karen suspects God has special plans ahead in that area! (Extra thanks go to Cel & Andy, who chose to spend a romantic Valentine’s Day in sunny Costa Rica moving heavy stuff and cleaning bathrooms!) In May it was wonderful to celebrate Vikky’s graduation from Arcadia University. She is now enjoying her first year in the Doctorate of Physical Therapy at Arcadia. The year’s last big event is still on the way: Ben and Stephanie are expecting our first grandson’s arrival in early March!
Our godson Sammy is growing in every way! First grade has been a huge success, thanks to God’s provision of a wise and caring teacher. Sammy loves learning new things, so we give him every possible opportunity to do so! Drawing is still his favorite hobby, but he has enjoyed a year of pottery lessons and Boy Scouts too.
Thank you so much for your faithful support!
Your financial help continues to free us up to teach seminary students and missionary kids. We are honored to serve God on your behalf!
Looking Ahead – Prayer requests for 2016
- That Stephanie’s Type 1 Diabetes will stabilize during the rest of her pregnancy
- For a safe delivery for mom and baby
- That Karen’s arthritis will improve
- That God will give us wisdom as we confront new challenges
- That God will clearly guide our path
- That God will supply our current month’s shortfall of $1500/month quickly without having to return for an early home assignment
Merry Christmas to all! Gary and Karen