Sunday, November 28, 2010

Catching You Up

Greetings. Well, this semester is winding down (only 2 more weeks of classes) and so much has happened since we last blogged. Like every semester before, it's been a very fast pace and lots and lots of details to take care of. One thing about BFA is the constancy. In our thrid year here, we've come to know what is coming down the pike - events, responsibilities and routines. But as predictable as things are there's always the unforeseen.

This semester has been no exception. I (Mark) have been very busy with my work with students. This has been my most rewarding year so far. It is very satisfying to build and experience community.

We began "subbing" (helping as substitutes) at Maugenhard dorm this year. We had to say our "good-byes" to the wonderful Storch (dorm) girls (where we subbed for the past two years) which was very sad . It was only because of the warm welcome received at Maugenhard that we were able to "work through" our loss. The guys and staff at Maugenhard are great and we have felt true community in these walls.

We continue to be blessed by our small groups. Recently we had a spaghetti dinner with the combined groups. The girls were in the kitchen cooking the meal.

Everyone around the table for spaghetti.

Last year we became sponsors to the sophomore class (now juniors) and this year we took a field trip to Normandy, France. Below are a few shots from the beaches of Normandy and some of the cemeteries where both German and American soldiers were laid to rest.

The American Cemetery.

A pensive student in the German cemetery.

Mark's small group at Omaha Beach.

Mark also worked to start a cycling club at BFA. This is still a rather informal club but we hope to build on what we were able to do this year. We organized both road and mountain bike rides. Some of the clothing (jerseys and bibs) were contributions from a racing team back in Franklin, Tennessee. Who knows, maybe one year there will be a cycling team!

After a long climb up the nearby mountain of Hoch Blauen.

Ethan continues to do well in soccer with the local Fussball Club. He moved up to an older age group and can handle his own. Ethan is also learning to play the violin.

This semester we've had several guests. Back in September the McVays visited us from Spain. We had such a good time talking about "the old days" and enjoying each others' stories about culture shock, adjustment and the unusual experiences that missionaries sometimes find themselves in. In October, the Keeners visited from France and we adults just tried to keep up with the boys. We climbed rocks, castles and each other. Most recently, our pastor Dixon came to visit to do some pre-work on a mission trip for next year. What great times!

Ethan and the Keener boys in Riquewihr, France.

Cotton candy and friends.

Herbstmesse in Basel, Switzerland.

Meredith is busy with school and college applications. Truth be know, Susan has been busy with college applications. In early November, Meredith participated in the DoDs European Volleyball Championship Tournament. The BFA girls won the Division II Championship Title.

Meredith spikes the ball.

Evan is adjusting to the demands of high school. He continues to practice with his band and even had a "gig" earlier in the year. Sorry, no pictures we weren't invited.

This weekend was the Christmas Banquet. Below are some of the pictures from our time together.

Mark's small group

Evan and his mother

Evan and Hannah

Meredith and David

Thank you for your continued prayer and financial support. We also would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas!

The Powells

1 comment:

Maggie said...

Hi Powells! Thanks for posting the photos and your stories. We love to read them. We will be praying that you all are encouraged over the holidays and that the Lord blesses you with some wonderful surprises.

the Sullivans