For those of you who don’t receive our monthly newsletter we wanted to share it with you…
New Year, BIG Changes
(Please Read to the End!)
Over the past five years, dozens of you have naturally asked us how long we will be in Jamaica. And our answer has always been the same: We’re here until we feel God leading us somewhere else, be that tomorrow or twenty years from now. God’s call for us to come and serve with CCCD in 2012 was extremely clear, and we just prayed that his next call on our lives would be the same…
Over the past several months, God’s plan for our future has become increasingly clear, as Ben was approached with a request to consider taking over the position of CCCD’s Vice President stateside, with the intention of moving toward higher leadership in the future. (The current VP, Chris Briggs, will be moving with his family to Jamaica this fall, which will leave a vacancy in the States.) In this position Ben’s responsibility and oversight within the ministry would greatly increase and expand to include US operations, fundraising for the ministry, US-Jamaica relations, and vision casting, to name a few. It would also entail moving our family back to the States to be most effective in this role. After much prayerful thought and consideration, including affirmation from key leaders within the ministry, we have made the decision to move forward, trusting God’s calling in our lives and will for the ministry of CCCD.
What does this mean?? Ben and I aim to be very purposeful with our transition from JDV back stateside. We still intend to be stateside for the birth of baby B (a boy!), from roughly April – August. We will then return to JDV as a family of five for a few months in order to close out our time here and transition management to the new missionaries. We anticipate that we will be permanently moving back to Zeeland, MI in November. At that point, Ben will begin his VP position full-time and I (Krista) will continue to serve as CCCD’s Education Committee Chairperson, Short-Term Missions Coordinator, and assist in the local office as needed.
Depending on your relationship with us, you may be feeling grieved by the fact that you won’t be seeing us as often, or rejoicing that we will be living nearby. We are right there with you. This was not a cut-and-dry decision and is one that is filled with mixed emotions. It is incredibly difficult to prepare for leaving this place and these people that have become our home and family over the last five years. “How exciting!!” you may respond to us – and yes – but sometimes no. Please keep us in your prayers this year as we face this big transition, not to mention welcoming a new family member in June. We look forward to the fact that our positions will have us traveling down to the island often throughout each year, which will give us much needed time face-to-face with the staff and students we are ministering to.
Please know that this change in positions does not in any way change our vision or effectiveness in reaching the Deaf of Jamaica. If anything, these new roles will allow us to use our unique skills and gifts most effectively and to reach all four CCCD campuses. WE STILL NEED YOU. Don’t click “unsubscribe,” stop praying, or (unless the Lord leads you) withdraw your support because we have a different address. We will STILL be faith-based missionaries and STILL require your financial support for our income. We will continue to send out monthly newsletters when we have landed stateside and look forward to being able to connect with our supporters in-person more regularly.
Well, I suppose that’s enough for one day! Hang on – 2017 is going to be a wild ride! And we are so grateful to know that each of you is out there praying for us and cheering us on as we seek to follow God’s will for our lives. Please feel free to send us any questions! Next month we will give you some more updates on what is new at JDV so far this year!
By His Grace,
Ben, Krista, Graham, Clara, & Baby B
P.S. OH, and if you haven’t already, stop by www.cccdjamaica.org to see the amazing NEW website!