Dan, May an evening in Rennes.
UN
HERE WE GO

I'm sitting in an office in Paris. It has high ceilings with decorative molding, an ornate, out of commission marble fireplace with a tall mirror framed in gilded leaves and clamshells. The wood floor has a 45 degree chevron pattern which would be a nightmare to sand. And on the wall across from me is a gigantic black and white print of the Eiffel Tower. This small room, about 150 ft², is the Agapé France office which is rented from the French Protestant Federation in Paris' 9th district. The amazing thing is that it is an 8 minute walk to the conservatory or the high school that Efrem will be attending. Everything is concentrated in this one neighborhood, conveniently narrowing our focus in apartment searching. I squeezed in ten apartment visits in one week. Many of them were at least 130 years old like this office. The decision has been really hard, but Friday we'll sign papers to rent an unfurnished apartment a stone's throw away from here. The best thing about the apartment is that it's on a dead end street on an interior courtyard, so it's very calm. This is a high priority for us. We will not be taking our car to Paris because it would cost far to much to park and old diesels are being banned in a couple years anyway. We will be figuring out how to live in a city of over two million people (7 million if you count the suburbs) with no vehicle. Life will certainly be different. Next comes cleaning and moving and crafting what this new chapter will look like. We need to be settled in by the time school starts, which will make for a busy August. But we have carved out a 10 day vacation together as a family. There is a time for everything.

Silas and Paris.

Silas will be studying in Paris next year!

Thank you from Redwings.

The Redwings hit a homerun in thanking Dan for his 6 years of coaching, giving a photo album entitled "Best Coach Ever".

Please pray

  • for our move from Rennes to Paris.
  • that we're able to adapt to a very different way of life, find a church, new friends, doctors...
  • for Silas and Efrem and their time at their third Crescendo Music Festival in Hungary. They're going without us this time.
Joe and Suzy Schlie.

Ships passing in the night - our dear friends Joe and Suzy just moved from Paris to Illinois this past month.

DEUX
PIVOTAL DECISIONS

We've been anxiously following Silas' college choice saga for the past several months. Now it's decision time. He came remarkably close to seizing the offer from Imperial College in London, his average was high enough, but his score in math was just shy of the limit. But there still were a number of excellent possibilities in France. And the winner is, drumroll please… Paris Dauphine! This is a remarkable opportunity. He is invited into their "talent" section which has reduced and concentrated class times to allow him to continue studying violin. He will get a bachelor's degree in math, computer science, and economics in four years. Best of all, he's not closing the door on violin. Speaking of violin, after receiving his professional music diploma from the conservatory in Rennes, Silas played an audition to study at the conservatory of Versailles - and he was accepted! So that is where he will study in addition to Dauphine. Math and music, the saga continues.

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Listening to pilgrims.
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A STOP ON THE CAMINO DE SANTIAGO

Early last month May spent a week in Spain at La Fuente del Peregrino, Cru's hostel for pilgrims on their way to Santiago. Part of her job description is to get out from behind the desk and onto the field at least once a year. This time her team included Robyn, a longtime friend and fellow staff member, plus a team of 6 involved with the Jesus Film. They had very long days, working early to welcome pilgrims with coffee and tea, cleaning the hostel and preparing it for new overnight guests, and hosting them for an evening meal. People from all over the world walk the Camino: Koreans, Russians, French, Spanish, Czechs… Each walking for their own reasons, but many are open and seeking. Guests were thrilled when given blankets and popcorn as they sat down to watch the Jesus Film before dinner, and the team had many great discussions with them. Two visitors were truly homeless, with no money or food, living off of whatever people gave them. One young man from Rome had spent a year with Buddhist monks and returned unsatisfied, still searching for meaning in life. There was one very intelligent and self aware pilgrim who wouldn't say where he was from but was clearly in crisis. He was very touched by how well May listened to him, making this poignant observation, "Most hostels feed and rest your body, but this hostel feeds and rests your soul." We pray he will find the rest he is looking for in Christ, giving his soul the peace only Jesus provides!

Working in the kitchen with Robyn.

Please pray

  • for May and Dan as they work on their strategic plans for the coming year.
  • that we find a suitable apartment in Paris that we can settle into before school starts in September.
  • for Silas and Efrem as they take important end of year tests, the BAC and the Brevet.
Registering a guest.

May checking in a pilgrim.

Cleaning up.
Rest and refreshment.

Pilgrims like to rest in front of the hostel throughout the day. 

Praying for guest.

One last moment to bless this guest before he starts his day walking.

DEUX
TWO HUGE ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Both Silas and Efrem have reached major milestones. Silas recently passed his final test to receive his DEM, a professional music diploma from the Rennes Conservatory. This opens the door for him to play or teach professionally. Each year only one or two students graduate at that level, and Silas had the unanimous vote of the jury. Bravo Silas!

Efrem also had quite an achievement, passing the test to enter the conservatory in Paris. Of the 25 flutists of all ages competing to enter the special section, only three were taken. This means Efrem's high school (which lasts 3 years in France) will have specially arranged classes to facilitate his music studies - in Paris. This is a wonderful opportunity, bravo Efrem!

You might be wondering what this means for us, Efrem attending high school in Paris. There will be a transition to Paris for us too. Fortunately, Cru is flexible enough for us to work in any city where teams exist, and our roles aren't tied to a specific location. So, as crazy as it might be, we're looking at apartments in Paris. Prayerfully we will find one that suits our family and be settled in by September.

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