"dream great dreams and find the courage to live them"

-erwin mcmanus

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

fui a barcelona!

translation: i went to barcelona! (p.s. this is spanish not italian. oops.)

as you may already know, i went to barcelona two weekends ago. it was such a good time away to just relax and see things! first of all, it was great to actually understand most of what people said because it's a language that i know. besides, almost everyone speaks english, which makes things easier (unless you are trying to improve your spanish...). i went for about 5 days, so it was definitely enough time to see the city. fun :)

i stayed with amanda, a friend of mine who i worked/lived with this summer with CSM in chicago. (p.s. i almost just spelled it chigaco. ha.) it really was a good time, though.
i think i ate more cookies that weekend than in the entire year combined, but at least they were good ones!

here are some pictures from the weekend.

this is La Sagrada Familia - a huge church designed by Gaudi.
it has been under construction for over a hundred years, and still not finished!

this is one of my favorite pictures of the whole trip.
this is the door of la sagrada familia!

i love spiral staircases like this!
this was also in la sagrada familia.

the front of la sagrada familia.

waiting for our paella! (and waiting and waiting and waiting...)
(clockwise from left front.. sarah, amanda, jess, sarah, me)
parc guell - the park that gaudi designed.
(the same guy who designed la sagrada familia)
i never realized how beautiful landscape architecture could be!

barcelona. and the sunset :)
(taken from the highest point of parc guell.

it was a good time. we even went to the ywam church there, so i got to meet even more ywam-ers from around the world! and it was fun to be in a church full of young people.

kay, that's all.
i leave here in less than four days. crazy...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

as i teach english to italians, i realize more and more just how incredible languages are. when i speak, i think that the words i use are the only ones that make sense, so why should there be other sounds that have the same meaning?

even the phrase, "make sense" is a strictly english phrase! so many things we say are exclusive to the english language. like "i'm going to stop by the store tonight".. stop by is only english. to "try on" clothes.. only english. i'm amazed.

i pray for a gifting in languages, because i would love, more than anything, to learn different languages. i have a good start in spanish, and a minimal beginning in italian. but all of the latin-based languages ... wouldn't it be wonderful to know all of them?! wow.

like when i was in barcelona, amanda told me that instead of saying "blocks" (like, the store is five blocks away), they say "manzanas" which means apples! crazy, huh? i love it!

language is a truly beautiful thing..

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

"io faccio una cosa nuova"

translation: "I am doing a New Thing"

this was the title of the consultation that took place here in pescara, november 21-23. about 60 people came here from all over the world to talk about the future of ywam italy. each of these people had a different reason for being here, but each one was equally as beautiful, and definitely from the Lord.

there have been some problems in the old ywam italy, and many people still felt so hurt by those things. the goal has never been to push those things under the rug, but to address them head-on and deal with each one.

so this was, in a way, the re-launch of ywam italy. the leaders of ywam western europe were here, jeff and romkje fountain, as well as other major leaders. the purpose was to cast vision for the future of ywam italy, and that is exactly what happened. in soo many ways, the Lord spoke to people.

within the next year, there are about 10 people who plan to move to italy to start ministries here or join existing ywam bases. it's incredible how God has brought this all together!

here are a few pictures that are pretty demonstrative of what happened that weekend::

here's a prayer and worship time.
a map of italy, regions, major cities, and monuments labeled.
the post its, though, are my favorite part... they are the dreams and visions that people have for the people and nation of italy. they are scriptures that the Lord laid on people's hearts for this nation. what a beautiful picture of God's plans for this country!
this is a tree, deeply rooted in ywam values, and growing leaves of vision for italy.
again.. beautiful :)
this is most of the dts team from harpenden, england. they were in pescara for the week prior to the consultation as well as a few days after it. this could not have happened without them and their help cooking, cleaning, and serving!
so this picture is of all of us having pizza on their last night here.
and these are my favorite women here :)
far left is Noelia, from argentina. (i get to practice my spanish with her!)
middle is cristiana. she's like my mom here. the woman who helps to run the base here.

and that's it.. the consultation was fun, tiring, and more than anything, it was inspiring. i can't imagine all of the damage done by the former ywam italy, but God is healing those wounds slowly, but surely. God is truly doing a new thing in italy :)
as for me, i went to barcelona this weekend and stayed with amanda, a friend who i lived and worked with this summer. it was a great time! i'll post a few pictures some other time.
for now?
i only have 10 days left in italy. let's make the most of them!