Greetings from South Africa!
We had a great surprise as we came back to the States. We had been contacted just before arriving that Lee United Methodist in northern Florida wanted someone from Teen Missions to come and speak at their church. We really enjoyed the fellowship and we had a special treat staying with a family living on the beautiful Suwannee River. We were able to catch up with some great friends as well at Salamonie Church of the Brethren, Broadway Christian, Emmanuel Community and Etna Avenue Wesleyan. You all mean so much to us and we treasure the times we get to spend with our friends there. Thanks to all the friends and families that put us up and fed us scrumptious meals.
We had a wonderful time visiting the U.S. and especially attending our son’s wedding. We have gained a beautiful daughter-in-law and are so excited to be a part of their life. One of the most exciting times for us was at the reception. It was a lovely day outside and Karen and I had some surprises from our kids. Brent had planned a special mother/son dance and even hand-picked the music for the occasion. I thought Karen would lose it, but she was full of smiles. The next surprise was for the two of us. At our wedding we could not afford a DJ or band so they had the DJ call us up and play a song just for the two of us. I nearly lost it at this point as I looked into the eyes of my wife as we danced. We very much enjoyed our time with them and found it hard to leave since we just got to know Alison.
Boot Camp was an awesome experience for me (Jason). I was kept very busy with teaching concrete class, digging class and mowing acres and acres of land. When our team arrived we were so blessed to actually have the BEST team at camp. Maybe I am a little biased but they really were! While there we met with our Director, Mr. Bland, to update on the ministry in South Africa. One of the requests was the need for a 22 seat bus to transport our students, do clinic runs for the homeless and take our summer camp teams to their mission outreaches. He approved the purchase but challenged us as well. He said Teen Missions will match the cost of the bus if we can work to get half donated. We are challenging people or businesses to help meet this matching cost. We need to raise $30,000 for our half and then Teen Missions will match it. If you know of businesses that have matching grant programs for non profits let us know. The other big news for us was the approval to build a training center that we can bring our ministry people to. So many people in South Africa are in need of skills to get jobs. This is the biggest request of the street ladies that we minister to. We want a building that will have a computer lab, phone answering, sewing, jewelry making, baking and whatever the Lord brings into our path. With these skills they can hopefully find entry level jobs that will get them off the streets and provide for their families.
When we asked Jolie her thoughts about her summer team she said, “They were awesome!” We had a great group of kids this summer. They were so willing to reach out to the people here in South Africa. We were able to wash the feet of many children and some adults, and pass out shoes. We also saw the thousands of others in need that we weren’t able to help. So hopefully this will put a burden on their hearts to reach the many who are far from God. We also had some fun times doing a Christmas in July party and a safari.
In August we helped Jenn and Symps move into a beautiful little cottage. Jolie and Joy quickly transitioned from homeschooling back to their Christian school. We settled back into ministry and still haven’t got caught up on everything. The “teamsickness” gets less each day, but we are constantly reminded of our new friends all over the U.S.
September brought an amazing opportunity for Karen. She was able to accompany Kathy V. from our director’s office to travel to the Teen Missions base in Zimbabwe. After some difficulty at the border, which caused some long delays, I (Karen) rejoiced at the sign which read “Zimbabwe. Enjoy your journey.” That was the blessing we heard eight years ago from some dear friends as we entered the mission field. We encouraged the staff and students for a week and I saw some huge Baobab trees and mountains. I also got to share on Sunday morning a word God gave me entitled “What A Blessing!” Also this month little baby De’Ajah (aka Joy) turns 15! As the girls are on Spring Break we will get to celebrate Joy’s birthday with several friends.
Karen will be back in the U.S. Nov 1-12 visiting our first granddaughter due in October. We are super excited to be a grandma and grandpa. We know first hand that we have been blessed to be a blessing. It has not always been easy being away from family during these precious times, but God promises in James 1:12 “Blessed is a man who perseveres under trial.” And Charles Spurgeon writes “Even our mercies, like roses, have their thorns.” Hang in there through the tough times as God’s blessings are just around the corner.
• Two wonderful weddings of our grown children—Jenn & Brent
• Safety through many hours and miles of travel this summer
• Mmantwa was able to walk to the base for Bible study and is now
back home with her husband and kids.
• Wisdom and God’s leading for the South Africa Boot Camp
December 7 – January 11
• Jenn’s neck continues to go out. Please pray for her healing
• Provision of a new minibus to transport students and Boot Camp
• Jolie still needs $1,200 for her team cost. Please send donations to
TMI, 885 Hall Rd, Merritt Island, FL 32953
In His Service,
Jason, Karen, Jolie & Joy
The Shrock Family
Psalm 46:10 “Be still and know that I am God!”
PO Box 865, Pyramid, SOUTH AFRICA 0120
Cell: 027 079 393 0492