Tuesday, December 9, 2008

St. Nikolaus Day

For many years, December 6th has to us just been the day after Mark's birthday - but not this year. This year, through some dear friends in the States we learned about a German holiday that will be very meaningful to us from this day forward. December 6th is St. Nikolaus Day and it's all about children. On the eve of this holiday, children put out their shoes and St. Nikolaus comes and puts little gifts in them.

On December 6th this year, a package arrived at our home. It was a box full of various Lebkuchen, Spekulatius cookies, Dominosteine and Stollen - all typical German treats served at Christmas. Inside the package was a card wishing us a Happy St. Nikolaus Day. We were so touched by the gesture. The package came at such an amazing time for me personally as it connected me to home and friends on a day when I was in need of such. I promptly sent our friends a hearty thank you via Facebook and they responded with a message that once again confirmed our ministry and calling here. I am including part of the message here with permission:

"We rejoice with you in your ministry and are so blessed that we can be a small part of it. It is great to be able to share in your daily lives such as through facebook and your blog. Through you we share a little in being missionaries. On this day we remember how Jesus welcomed children and His love inspired Nicholas to come to the aid of children. Even more so we remember and are very thankful that you have heeded the call and love of God in ministering to His children in BFA!! So know that we love you all and do think about you frequently. Thank you for sharing your lives with us and the students entrusted to you!!"

We are certainly blessed!

Collect (prayer) for St. Nikolaus Day
Let your continual mercy, O Lord, enkindle in your church the never-failing gift of charity, that, following the example of your servant Nicholas of Myra, we may have grace to deal in generosity and love with children and with all who are poor and distressed, and to uphold the cause of those who have no helper; for the sake of him who gave his life for us, your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and ever.

Here are some recent ministry highlights and happenings here at BFA:

BFA was invited by the town of Kandern to perform at the local Christmas Fest. (the following four pics are borrowed from my friend Sandee)
High School Chorale
Middle School Choir (Evan is behind these pretty girls!)
High school mime team
High school drama team

Ethan grilling bread dough. The cheapest (1 Euro) babysitter around:)

Thursday night at the Powells. I cooked 3 kilos of taco meat for these hungry basketball players. Needless to say, it was all eaten!

This past weekend all of BFA turned out to cheer on our JV and Varsity Basketball teams. I yelled so much for "our" kids, my throat was sore!