La Lumiere
September, 2019
Professing their faith.
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THE INTERNET NEVER SLEEPS

August was a super busy month, driving van loads of stuff to Paris for the move, cleaning, and trying to get settled. We also got away as a family for ten days of real vacation. You might think that there wasn't much happening, but in August questions2vie.com was getting a record number of visits, over 123,000! That traffic led to a mountain of emails because the internet doesn't take a vacation. People's questions are really interesting, some ask deep theological questions which make me wonder if they're just looking for help with homework. Others come straight out with objections to the faith or a specific article. Some ask how to pray. Other ask for help against sin in their lives. Many are saying thank you for the messages they receive via our email series. But one discussion I'm looking forward to having is with Victorin, who simply wrote, "I want to better understand faith." Typically I don't hear back from most of the people I respond to, which can be a little discouraging. But Victorin already wrote to me again. I pray we can explore faith in Christ together. I feel like the sower sowing seeds, only time will tell how many fall on good soil and produce fruit. I continue to trust God in what he has called me to do and to rely on his Holy Spirit to guide and empower me. The results are up to Him!

Silas in the Channel.

Both Silas and Efrem were baptized in August!

Efrem in the Channel.

Please pray

  • for our relationships with our new neighbors, especially those above us who are sensitive to noise.
  • that we quickly get our bearings in this big city, including finding a church. Lots of options.
  • for Silas and Efrem starting in new schools and making new friends.
The craziness during a move.

Sharing moments of chaos during our move.

Van load #1

Efrem is enjoying the first of three trips with a van loaded to capacity. This van worked wonderfully in the narrow streets and limited parking places in Paris.

DEUX
BAPTIZED!

Our church in Rennes baptized three people in August, including Silas and Efrem! What a joy it is to see your children profess their faith in Christ and their intention to live for Him! Each in turn shared their testimonies in front of the church. Silas told of how shocked he was during a conference with other "missionary kids" when he heard that some of them don't really share their parents' beliefs. For him, that was an opportunity to ask himself if he truly holds the same faith as his parents. His answer is yes, that he firmly believes, and he beautifully and succinctly shared the gospel during his testimony. Efrem told of the Easter Sunday when we all watched the Jesus film for children together, how that helped him understand who Jesus was and his sacrifice on the cross. He remembers the invitation to pray afterward and feeling the presence of the Holy Spirit for the first time as he prayed. Efrem also said that he believes music is a way for him to glorify God, that he feels His presence when he plays. For that reason, he played a piece by Bach and challenged everyone to hear how great God's love for us is. It was beautiful. Afterward, we all went to the beach and the three young men were baptized in the English Channel as waves washed over them. Being at their side for those moments was pure joy!

Our Signatures

Dan, May an evening in Rennes.
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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.

Our Signatures