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Serving the Lord, with you!
Watchful and Thankful

Fawn and I are thankful and encouraged that you are taking time to partner with us by following our ministry.  We take time as a family to pray for you as well, as we see this command in Scripture.  If you have specific things that we can be praying about take a minute to let us know here.
Colossians 4:2-3
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. And pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should.

Although Fawn and I don't find ourselves in chains, we do ask that you would pray for us as we serve the Lord in Hungary.  God has presented us both with many opportunities to share God's love and speak truth into the lives of others over the course of this last month.  Having lived here for over two years, we are feeling established and seeing relationships grow.  Please pray that we would not be discouraged or distracted during these challenging times. Thank you for taking the time to read our update and pray for our family.
This is a picture of the ICSB High School students and staff at the retreat.
Ministry Update

This month was filled with a few exciting activities.  For two nights the ICSB High School students and staff attended a retreat at a retreat center about two hours from the school.  This is an annual tradition that was threatened by the pandemic, but was able to go on as scheduled.  It was an amazing time of relationship building, spiritual growth, and fun!  For these few days it seemed that students and staff were able to leave the pandemic behind and engage in great community building life together.  One of the highlights was a giant water slide that we built on the side of a hill.  Here is a link to a short video of people using the slide.  

A second event that happened was with our ABWE team.  We were scheduled to attend a regional conference in Estonia, but had to transition to a virtual format due to the pandemic.  We hosted our local ABWE team at our home each of the three nights of the conference.  The meetings were a great success and we were happy to reconnect with ABWE missionaries from all over our region in this format.

Fawn has reconnected with her language teacher this month.  These lessons were interrupted due to the pandemic, but Fawn and several others will resume classes soon.
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This was taken at a local playground in Budapest.  It is built on a hillside with slides and these fun bumps to climb.
Hedgehogs are common in Hungary.  Here is Noah and Sadie checking one out!
One of our teammates annonymously gave gift bags to each of our kids for the ABWE conference.  Usually kids are smothered with gifts from "home" at these conferences, but this year that was not possible.  Everyone was excited to receive the gifts.  
Fawn arranged to have Noah's class over to our house one day in order to let the kids play and the parents connect.  We had a great turnout and a nice time of fellowhsip!
Lacey, Fawn, and I visited a town called Szeged to run a race with a Hungarian running club from our town here in Hungary.
Here is a picture of the team at the race in Szeged.
Abi and some of her friends went to an escape room to celebrate a birthday.
Pressler loves reading and here he's sharing his love with his little sister Maggie.
Pandemic Update:(Only read this if you don't get enough pandemic news from other sources)

Although I try to avoid talking about and thinking about COVID-19 unless I have to, I wanted to take just a minute to update you on a few things that have been impacting the school and our family. 

Our school has been significantly impacted just like every school in the world, but we are still meeting in person.  We are practicing the safety protocols that we see around the world, like face coverings in public spaces, physical distancing, and disinfecting practices.  Our students and staff are permitted to remove their face coverings in the classrooms, so this brings some semblance of normalcy to the atmosphere.  I have found that during school hours much of life is the same.  The afterschool programming has been suspended, although the leadership is discussing ways to offer these programs moving forward.  We were also able to have a band/choir concert during school hours, inviting the entire student body and staff to participate!

One of the most significant changes that has impacted the school is the sickness policy.  Students that show one or more symptoms of COVID-19 are required to stay home and may only return with a doctor's note.  In Hungary the medical professionals are very conservative, so a student that stays home with a runny nose will always be required to be symptom free for three days and sometimes as much as ten days before a doctor will give a clearance note.  This has led to a significant number of long absences.  In our family three of our kids have missed a week of school as a result of runny noses.  The teachers of ICSB have been working extremely hard to ensure that students can still learn remotely and, overall, this has been successful.  Students are able to join a virtual class meeting during their scheduled classes and all of the resource and assignment delivery is primarily done digitally for all students in the high school.

On the bright side, Fawn and Maggie have enjoyed having one of the kids home at a time as they've had a chance to spend some quality time together.  The picture above of Pressler reading to Maggie was during his runny-nose week.

If you would like to read about our school's safety and remote learning protocols you can follow these links.
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Prayer Requests & Praises
Pray:
  • that Mike will continue to manage the school well, giving attention to the things at hand, while also preparing for the future
  • that Fawn will be able to continue connecting with women in our community
  • for Fawn as she resumes her language study
  • for the staff of ICSB as they continue to serve the students for God's glory
  • for the students as the year continues to be disrupted with safety protocols and uncertainty
  • for Lacey as she will be deciding on where to go for college in the coming months
Praise the Lord for:
  • the great things happening at ICSB and the safety that he has provided for our school
  • the many people that have worked to make our ABWE conference a success
  • our support team that enables our family to serve in Hungary
Share your prayer requests here.

Thanks for reading,
Mike, Fawn, Lacey, Abigail, Lydia, Pressler, Sadie, Noah, and Maggie
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International Christian School of Budapest · 4663 CROY LAKE RD. NE · Mancelona, MI 49659 · USA

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