Summer Update (by Becca)

Hello, friends and family!

It has been 3 months since our last blog update, and we've been busy. Our biggest news is the arrival of our 5th child, baby Irene Verena. She was born on July 31st, which makes her already 2 months old! It's amazing how time flies. We praise God for a smooth, safe delivery, and that she is a very healthy and happy baby. The whole family adores her.

My mom came out to stay with us for 2 weeks to be with me for the birth and to help out with the new baby. We had a very nice visit, but it was too short! It was very fun for the kids to see their grandma again, and she brought many fun gifts and greetings from family in the U.S. We are so thankful that she was able to come see us here in Togo.

Life here at the hospital and on the missionary compound was busy as we hosted a few large short-term mission trip teams and had an Independence Day celebration and mission team meetings. We also welcomed some new and returning missionaries to the field, and had to say good-bye to several fellow missionaries who were leaving Togo (either because their terms were up or because God was calling them elsewhere). It has been good to make so many new friends and get to know our team-mates better. It has also been hard to say good-bye to so many friends. We are thankful for the relationships God has given us and the time we get to spend with these friends, whether long or short.

A new teacher is here and going to start doing school work with the kids next week. Up until now, we've been doing full-time home-schooling. We will still be home-schooling for some subjects, but the teacher will be taking part of the load. The kids are very excited to get started in "school" at the missionary kid school-house.

In the middle of September, we went to Spain for a spiritual retreat with Samaritan's Purse, our sending organization. It was very nice to see some of our old friends from orientation and missionary training that had gone to other countries in West Africa. It was also fun to get away for a few days and enjoy the beautiful Costa del Sol in southern Spain. Unfortunately, our kids were sick with a stomach virus for much of the time we were there, so we didn't get to do as much sight-seeing as we would have liked, but we got to enjoy the beach and the hotel pool a little, and it was nice to talk with the team from the Samaritan's Purse home office.

As we look back on the last 3 months, we can see that we definitely have a lot to be thankful for, and we know that you all were praying for us, and we are so grateful for you! As we look forward to the next few months, we would appreciate prayer for the following:

  • There have been many protests and a lot of political unrest in Togo recently. We do not feel that we specifically are affected much by this, except that the government has shut down the internet repeatedly in order to keep the opposing faction from communicating with each other, so our communication also gets disrupted. We also need to be careful about planning shopping trips and travel around times when there are protests, as those can turn violent and we don't want to be caught in the middle of them. Please pray for a peaceful resolution to the difficulties in this country and for safety and wisdom for those working and living here.
  • Seth has been wearing many hats at the hospital lately: he's been personally involved in pediatrics, anesthesia, ultrasound, and administration of the medical clinic and mobile clinic. He's feeling pulled in a lot of directions, and obviously very busy. Please pray for peace and wisdom for him as he tries to settle into his role(s) here, and pray, too, for more workers to come and fill the many needs at the hospital and in the community.
  • Please pray that school will go well for the kids, and that as that frees up some of my time, God will open the doors for me to pursue new ministries outside the home, hopefully befriending and working with more Togolese families.

Thank you again for your prayers and support. We praise God for the work he is doing here in Togo, and we are so thankful to you all for helping us be a part of it.