It’s Monday October 7th, and I’m home alone. My wife Sharon is away in Valley Forge at the Mission Center where she is going through new missionary orientation for International Ministries. She’s been endorsed to be a missionary partner with me, coming onto missionary staff part-time as the new Global Consultant for Community Transformation! So though she’s gone right now, her absence is a step forward in a deeper work partnership. Instead of accompanying me for two to three weeks a year as a volunteer, she will journey with me for two to three months a year as a regular missionary colleague.
For ten years Sharon has prayerfully selected one of my trips to teach alongside me. She is an ordained American Baptist clergy person. She’s been trained and has a lot of experience in experiential and participatory education. She knows peacemaking and nonviolence from the local to the global level. So she and I have made a great mission team whether co-facilitating in trainings or doing dialog sermons in a pulpit. We’ve done great work together in places like Kenya, Ethiopia, Poland, Thailand, Burma, India, and the Philippines. The international encounters aren’t a problem for Sharon as she daily encounters people from Poland, Bangladesh, Yemen, and Bosnia in her ministries here at home. She has been capable and comfortable in cross-cultural and multi-cultural contexts.