going away party

Our church is blessed to have many members who are seriously interested in missions and missionary work. One of our young ladies is preparing to go to the Philippines to attend the Newlife International School of Midwifery. On Sunday, we hosted a church dinner at our home to show our love and support of her and her plans.

DD made the cookie bars and I decorated them. “Bethany, the Lord bless and keep you. ~all our love and prayers”

going away party

Bethany didn’t know the dinner was for her. She had been with the mission team in West Virginia all week and had arrived home Saturday evening. We have a blackboard by the front sidewalk of our yard to advertise plant sales and DD wrote, “We’ll miss you, Bethany!” on the sign. She saw that and thought it was nice, but didn’t give it much more thought than that.

When she came in, she found her pictures from her Haiti trip on a slide show in the living room, which she said did surprise her. But the light bulb moment was when she walked into the kitchen and saw her name on the cookie bars. (I edited out her name before posting the picture on flickr.) Then there were tears, but they were good ones. {{{{Bethany}}}}

We also had pictures in a slide show in the office of the mission team’s trip to Atlanta in July.

Atlanta mission trip pictures

Adam had just arrived home last Wednesday from his mission internship in Nairobi, Kenya, and he also had pictures to show.

Nairobi mission trip pictures

In the past, we’ve set the food on the kitchen table. This time we tried two tables in the front hall and it worked very well. I think this is going to be SOP for future church dinners. We had more room and I think the flow of traffic was better, too.

dinner line

The temps were supposed to be in the high 90s, but turned out to be about 20 degrees cooler than expected. While most of our guests ate indoors, we all gathered outside for Pastor Bob’s devotional.

gathering for devotions

After the party, there was lots of help cleaning up, taking chairs and tables back to church, picking up, and washing dishes, etc. A big thank you goes to Paul who washed all the dirty dishes and gathered and took out all the trash. And thanks, too, to Susan who took all the tablecloths home and washed them for me. What a great gift. Thank you!

We had a wonderful time, and will miss Bethany a great deal while she’s gone. But we are thankful for her shining testimony of her love for Christ and her willingness to follow Him in service to others. Bethany, we will be praying for you!



  1. Posted August 7, 2008 at 8:58 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Rhonda, for all your sweet hospitality! It was a very special time and I so enjoyed it!

    Love in Christ,

  2. Rhonda
    Posted August 7, 2008 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

    {{{{{Bethany}}}}} You are most welcome.

  3. Posted September 16, 2008 at 9:58 pm | Permalink

    I found you through CrazyMomQuilts. I love Christmas and came over to check things out. I clicked on this story out of curiosity, because there is a Bethel College in our area, and was surprised to see where your friend was headed. What a small world! A friend of mine (http://www.midwifejenny.blogspot.com/) just finished her 2 years at Mercy Maternity with New Life. She just got back at the end of July, so they must have just missed each other.

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  1. By Christmas Notebook » bye-bye, pine trees! on October 7, 2008 at 11:50 am

    […] Paul leveled the stumps, taking off the sharp pieces. Same nice guy who washed all the dishes and took out all the trash after Bethany’s party. […]

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