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Amy Ministry 1

Johnny Jones, 17 December 2001

Just before Thanksgiving, our daughter Amy came home. She had been on a mission trip with YWAM (Youth With A Mission). I'm giving her this space to tell you about it:

Although our team was scheduled to leave September 15th, our flight was cancelled (due to 9/11) and we left a full week later, missing our planned ministry in Germany.

We left for Holland on the following Saturday. There, we stayed with families who attended the church which was hosting us. The families were amazingly kind and hospitable; we couldn't believe their generosity. I felt that I really got to know the Snyders, the host family Carrie, another girl on my team, and I stayed with. A custom in Holland is to sit in the living room, have tea and talk in the evenings. I really enjoyed this time of fellowship with the family.

My favorite ministry times in Holland were in Amsterdam. Although we were staying in a small city called Nunspeet, we traveled to Amsterdam various times to work in a ministry to the homeless. In the morning, we would make sandwiches for the people who came in; after that we would serve them sandwiches, coffee, tea and chocolate milk. When it wasn't too busy, we had time to talk with the people there (many of whom were fluent in English.) I felt that we were able to share God's love with these people ­ to be "Jesus" to them ­ through our actions and attitudes of love toward them.

Other highlights for me in Holland were getting to meet Trudy and Henriette, teenage girls who attended the church which was hosting us. On one of our days off, my friend Youn-Jin and I went to their house to have dinner with them and teach them some of the dances which we used in ministry times. They showed us several dances they knew as well, which were to Christian songs. Later, we rode on bicycles to the center of town and to a grocery store to pick up snacks. Everyone there really does get around on bicycles; it's amazing! My host family allowed me to borrow one to go downtown or to visit people when I wanted to. I loved it.

The next portion of our journey was to Northern Ireland. We stayed at the Methodist Church in Tandragee, a little town south of Belfast. Once again, the reception and hospitality was amazing.

In Tandragee, we performed evangelistic dramas and dances in both primary and secondary public schools and in church youth groups. We gave testimonies and explanations of what we did, and afterward, we spoke informally with the students. We were really able to get to know people, both students in the school and the people in the Methodist Church. By the end of the week, we felt that nearly the whole town knew us! The best part for me was getting to know Jody, a thirteen-year-old girl that Youn-Jin had met during one of our times in the schools. Again, on a day off, we spent several hours with her. She showed us a beautiful park outside town, and invited us to her house to see a movie.

I must say that although I love times of group ministry, the richest part for me is getting to know individual people. Talking with them is not duty or obligation, but a joy. I really loved being with Trudy and with Jody, and some of my best memories will be in relation to that. Yet this was not official "ministry," but just time with people.

I also will never forget Mabel, who has been married to her husband for 62 years. I met her at the nursing home in Tandragee which we visited. When I stepped into her room, an immediate connection seemed to take place, as if we knew and loved each other from the start. She was almost an Irish grandmother to me. I enjoyed sitting and talking with her, holding her hand and being with her.

From jc: There's more to Amy's trip ­ I'll let her tell you more later. I thought you might like to see the love that Jesus puts in hearts, both long ago and today. He is the reason for this season. Amy Ministry 2