Sain baina (“hello”) from Mongolia. Today one of the team members came up to me and asked, “When is the Mongolian Boot Camp Commissioning?” When I replied, “Tuesday” they were heartbroken. We have been having such an amazing time here, no one wants to even think about leaving. Last Tuesday, the Mongolian team members arrived at the Boot Camp. It was great to be greeted by 25 smiling faces as the piled off the back of a Russian military era truck where they had risen for over an hour to arrive at Teen Missions’ Mongolian Boot Camp. The team instantly began developing relationships with the Mongolian team members, even though there is a language barrier. Everyone is wearing name tags & the Mongolians have translated the US team member’s names into Mongolian & the US team members have given the Mongolian team member’s “American” names. The team members are helping in nearly every aspect of the Boot Camp. John is “Mr. OC.” Elise & Irina have teamed up as “Miss Piggy.” Colton and Reagan are teaching puppets and Veronica is heading up the drama team. Many of the classes are being taught be leaders and team members. Jordan is helping with the “Personal Evangelism” class and organizing skits to communicate the principles of the class. The team is excited to see the Mongolians smiling whenever they are learning new things.
Any “free time” that we may have between classes is being devoted to developing lesson plans for our upcoming week in South Korea. After our visit there last week, we now have a better understanding of what will be expected of us while we will be teaching english so the team is working hard at developing lesson plans and activities during out 6 hrs/day that we will be teaching conversational english to kids ages 9-18. Please be in prayer for us as we look ahead at our next ministry opportunity.
Our Boot Camp location is beautiful! From our campsite we frequently have herds of cows, goats & horses wander through camp. It is not uncommon to see a boy or man on his horse riding through the camp or herding his animals to greener pastures. There is also a Ger within eye site of our camp where an older man lives. He is often seen climbing the nearby field and just watching our team. For the past two days he has come down at mealtime and asked for food. Our Mongolian coordinator has decided to offer him a meal under the condition that he stay for evening Rally. Last night he joined us and appeared interested in what was going on & told our coordinator that he had a “great time!” Today when I left the property to write this email, he had returned again, even though lunch was over. Please continue to pray that the Lord will provide opportunities for the Mongolians to share about Jesus with him & our team to share the Love of God with him through our actions.
Thoughts from the team:
Brianna Rodriguez- There’s not much to say other than Mongolia is beautiful. Each aspect of this country holds its own beauty – the people. the food, the language and the scenery. But there’s one factor that undeniably breath taking: God’s presence. In the past four days that we’ve been here I’ve felt nothing but joy, overwhelming joy and thanksgiving, from scooping up cow pies to sitting around the view with my team, God continually displays something worthy of praise. The greatest moment I’ve experienced so far was during the church service last Sunday. The worship and testimonies shared by the Mongolians truly displays God’s work within this country, albeit the language barrier can make things difficult at times, God’s love and word is for sure a universal thing.
Daniel Zettelmoyer- We arrived at our project site on Saturday. Priase the Lord for safe travel and protection! We have nearly completed setting up the boot camp here in the Mongolian countryside. The kids are arriving today to begin their bootcamp training. We’re very excited to interact with them and to encourage their walk with the Lord! Another praise that we have is that our team continues to bong closer together and with our fellow Mongolians as well. We had a great outdoor service with them on Sunday. Please continue praying for our team and for our ministry here.
Veronica Rodrigurez- We arrived in Mongolia on Saturday and the past few days were both difficult and pleasant. A lot of the time I am very quiet so I tend to stay close to people that I’m comfortable with. These past couple days we were all spoken to about cliques. Therefore my goal is to talk to more of my team. God has helped me with strength on this trip because normally I would be physically weak. As well with spiritual strength. Sometimes I am completely homesick wishing to go home, however the Lord helps me with it. I then think that I am doing it for the Lord, and everything gets better, especially during devos. Phil. 4:13 “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Samantha Groves- All I can do is sit and praise God for everything. Mongolia is so beautiful, our team is so close, everyone we have come in contact with has been so nice and welcoming, and the food in Mongolia and Korea is SO good! There are really only two downsides in Mongolia; the overabundance of flies and the cows that like to eat the tarps off our tents. But it’s a lot better than mosquitos. God has really blessed the team and I can’t thank Him enough for all he has done in our lives. *Side Story: For the longest time our team had no idea what we would be doing in Mongolia, we were literally walking by faith. We signed up to build a bathroom but we are actually running a Boot Camp! I’m so excited to see what God does!