Thursday, July 20, 2017

June 2017 Update

Dear Friends & Family,

We hope that you had a lovely fourth of July! Ours was definitely anti-climatic as we "celebrated" just north of the border.  We did have the experience of witnessing Canada Day in Québec (July 1st), where we didn't see any Canadian flags but saw many driveways taking part in Québec's "moving day".  Yes, most leases start/end on this day in Québec and in its wake there are many "donation" piles for the city garbage men to pick-up.  Québec's big celebration was the Saint-Jean-Baptiste celebration on June 24th, as we live in a very francophone city, there were many Québec flags everywhere, some fireworks, and then, of course, festivities in the downtown.

This last month has vamped-up in activities, as well as its challenges.  As stated in our last newsletter, Andréa has been working through a particularly difficult flare.  Consequently, she has had to scale-back her daily activities in order to rest her body.  Thankfully, her family had planned on visiting this last month and they offered invaluable help in her rest and recuperation (along with caring for Lydia).  Another hardship that took place for us personally was that our older dog, Amos, managed to shatter all of the ligaments in both of his back legs when trying to escape under a fence.  We were told he wouldn't be able to walk again, but he's recovered quite miraculously and is able to walk around the house now, with a limp.  So, we did spend a rather trying week with the looming question of having to put him down or not.

For some happier news, we had the joy of having Mike Fleischmann join us in our home and city for the afternoon/evening.  It was encouraging having the support from our governing organization and sharing the need and vision for spreading the Gospel, here in Québec.  Here is a photo of us with him and Pastor Jacob, inside Ecclésia:
We had the opportunity to be a part of the Fellowship Pastoral Conference, where all of the pastors of Québec met and we were able to more succinctly view the vision of pastoral training and church planting for the province. It was exciting to be involved and part of the movement, now that we are on the field.
Jason was able to be a "moniteur" (camp counselor) at a Christian kids' camp, 2 and a 1/2 hours north of us.  It was extremely tiring for him, as it was all in French but the reward was great as he had the opportunity to walk two kids through the process of accepting Christ into their heart.  There were about 200 kids who took part in this middle school camp.   Here are some photos from the time he had there:
In this last month, Andréa has been a part of starting a young moms' group for all of the *many* moms in the area.  She has been in charge of leading the Bible study and prayer time.  The focus of the group is looking at our roles, as mothers, as a mission field and to offer support to the many isolated mothers during the week.  If you would like to pray for this time, we meet every Wednesday morning!  Andréa has also started helping the Fleur de Lys (French Immersion program) with being the contact for interested individuals/groups and helping them in finding housing during their stay.  Which brings us to the news that Jason officially started his language classes on July 5th!  He is pretty excited and it is a good challenge that is bringing us along our projected path of serving, here in Québec more effectively.  If you would like to donate to the cost of his classes, please let us know so that way we can set-up a special gift donation.  The cost of the classes are $600 (CDN) per month.  We believe that this is paramount in moving froward.

Here are a few pictures from when Andréa's family visited this last month.  It was such a blessing having them with us, as Jason was at camp and Andréa wasn't feeling well (not pictured is Nathan).

In this next month, if you could keep us in your prayers in the following ways, that would be excellent:
  • Language learning: that Jason can pick-up the language quickly and retain the vocabulary-heavy focus at the beginning of Phase 1.
  • Andréa's health: she is improving but has had to go on to medication and not all of the symptoms have fully disappeared, yet.
  • J'aime mon voisin: please pray for the organization of this event, the city of Saint-Jérôme, and the youth kids that have come to help serve.
  • Continual health for Lydia: she has remained healthy and strong throughout this process and we are trying to start her on some puréed veggies to help give more energy to her maman.  You can pray as her teeth are coming in and it is painful for her.
  • Pray for stamina as we are making more connections and friendships.  We pray that we can find a balance and discernment of what are appropriate levels of involvement that won't result in burn-out.
Here are a few pictures of Lydia to mark her 5 months of being with us.

We are ever so grateful for your prayer and support in our lives!

For His Glory,
Jason, Andréa & Lydia Maul

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