Brrr... We are going back to Jamacia mon!

We have arrived safley in Toronto around 8pm.  Our sunburns are peeling and the cold air hits hard... We were not ready for that.  We will continue our debrief in the morning, but for now it's off to sleep, with a few more blankets then we are use to.  Please continue to pray for us as we process our expirences and how we saw Christ at work. We look forward to seeing our families and friends Tommorrow evening. 

Pam & Joeline  

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SEND ALOE ASAP

Today we had the privilege of sleeping in until breakfast which was at 9am!! Most of us woke up earlier than that anyways because we were used to being up 3 hours earlier. After Canadian breakfast (cereal) we headed on over to the beach and it was raining for most of the morning, but once lunch time rolled around the sun was blaring hot leaving us all with TERRRRRIBLE sun burns. Regardless, we had a real fun time at the beach on the water trampolines, snorkeling, playing volleyball and doing flips. We sadly had a gymnastics incident leaving Becca with a sprained ankle. After the beach we dressed up for the best supper ever! CANADIAN FOOD! We had fries which were missed my all. The rest of the evening included aloe parties and whale moans from the dreadful pain of sun burn.  Please continue to pray for us as we travel to Toronto tomorrow and continue with our debrief.  We will be processing a lot; the Lord has shown us many new things and been at work in each of our lives in powerful ways.

Good night everyone and see you pale people in a few days, love your lobster friends Hanna and MIllicent (Millie) <3 

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Can we just stay forever?

Since we were able to finish the house in just three days, today we got to just relax at the base and do some cleaning.  Of course while cleaning there were multiple dance parties, sword/machete "duels," and singing at the top of our lungs, which may have drawn the process out a little longer than needed, but we sure had fun!!  We spent the afternoon enjoying the pool, getting our hair done Jamaican style, and hanging out with our wonderful new friends on the base.  Supper was full of mixed emotions as we said our thank-yous and good-byes.  We have been so blessed this trip by how welcoming and caring everyone working on the base has been.  Once again Oli brought much hospitality, joy and laughter, and wisdom to us all.  Coleen was our other host, who also blessed us with her encouraging words and kind spirit.  They hold a special place in our hearts and will not soon be forgotten.  After singing "Fill up my cup" (lead by Millie singing base) for the hundredth or so time, we said our final good-bye to the base and headed to our hotel in Montego Bay.  After some confusion and few room switches, we finally settled into our rooms.  "It's no problem mon!"  We finished off the night with some shopping on the Hip Strip near our hotel and we look forward to sleeping in and our day at the beach tomorrow!  Prayers for sunshine would be greatly appreciated, as it has been raining since we finished the house.     

Love to you all,

Pam and Joeline

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J is for john, f is for fart.

Quite the adventure today was. Started off with some good morning devos followed by some hearty grain for breakfast. And off to the races we went. Just kidding. We went to Mega Mart..... After picking up groceries we headed to Lethe to do the dedication and hand the keys over to Jean. It was tough. Real tough and after rounding the circle of prayer she got to open her new door. Jean was like an egg, seems tough on the outside but once broken into is soft and squishy. She showed no emotion all week then at the passing of the keys broke into tears of greatfulness and warmth. Are team felt so blessed to have gotten to share the love of God with her and the people of Lethe. Shortly after a huge soccer game appeared out of nowhere and we were all shown up by the little 8 year old boys. Leaving was probably the hardest as we each had grown to love multiple of the beautiful children of Lethe. After consoling Millie and Kayci from their broken hearts we were able to resume our blitzin'. Back at the base they had a big feast planned for us, with festivals, jerk chicken and bean rice and ice cream. DELISCIOUSOOO!!!!! Our team is feeling bitter sweet as we have one last day at the base, we have really learned to love our Jamaican home, even though the plumbing might not be the best, and most definitely are not looking forward to the snow.

                                    Sincelerly the cutest, Brianna & Savannah & Joeline

 

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It's Raining Men

This morning sucked to be honest. We woke up at 5am to be honest. Not nice to be honest. But to be honest be had a great breakfast finally, it was french toast to be honest. Last thing to be honest about is we almost finished the house today. We just have painting left to be honest.

Today was a smoker, we loaded on the screen of the sun and aloe. We all loved hanging around with the kids and painting each other. We continue to teach each other new songs and games as we waste time in the shade. Ended off the work day with hugs and sprained ankles. (I wasn`t wearing my brace to be honest sorry momma Thiessen) When we got to the base we were surprised with amazing spaghetti, after we prayed for edible food for supper. We are enduring some heavy heavy heavy heavy rain to be honest. The forecast is pretty wet and warm to be honest.  During our team time this evening we got to open some pretty mint letters from loving friends and family from home and watch the awesome videos you guys recorded for us before we left. We are currently embracing the weather by jumping the pool and having fun in the rain. Tomorrow on the work site we plan to be finished and dedicate the house to the family. We also continue to have dutch blitz games where Chan and Tan continue to win (kill to be honest)  to be honest. Kasja does her best, but it seems to never be enough for Kayci. 

The women who will be getting the privilege to live in the home we made together is named Jean, she is 52 years old and is a single mother of seven kids. This is her first home of her own and we are very grateful to have built it for her and her family. 

God bless, 

Chan and Tan. (Cheyenne and Tana) 

Will you Aloe me?

We kicked off the day with a good old devo at 6am, we got fed up and head out to the work site.  We knew it would be a scorcher because of the fog that we found when we woke up and oh boy we were right!  When the fog cleared and the sun began to shine we got red.....we got very red. The burn lines were distinct leaving Hannah laying on the table and the bottle of aloe literally half empty.  By lunch time it felt 6000 degrees which led to both water coolers empty at the end of the day. Walls went up and paint was applied not only to those walls but to kids, dogs, plants, and us. Especially Savannah who came back with a couple coats.  We got all the walls up today and the trusses in place leaving only plywood and shingles to finish off our work. 

When we got back to the base we all took desperately needed showers and half of us jumped in the pool with the other half sleeping the pains away. We proved the theory that food is better when you're hungrier by eating multiple giant helpings of chicken and dumplings and only stopping to allow others to enjoy what little remained. Toward the end of the evening we did and encouraging exercise by going around the circle and encouraging each other. After laughter, tears, Chan professing her love for Pam, and references to our exploding cow conversations, we drew a picture.  

 

We ended the night with a group hug, aloe fights and later more hugs. We feel your prayers and wish you could all be here instead of being stuck in freezing cold Saskatchewan. 

Love your friendly neighborhood Spencer and Brennan

#RatherBeBlitz'n

Today we started off with fantastic 5:45am wake up call! It was great... This morning we experienced a real Jamaican breakfast, which only Spencer and Jeannie enjoyed. After that we hopped on the bus and headed on up to Leathe (the village) to begin build the house. As we built two of the walls, painted, and assembled the trusses, we enjoyed the company of each other and the people in the community while they willingly helped out with the projects. The sun was finally out today, which can be easily noticed by all of our red skin. With the fun painting the walls and each other, almost all of us obtained beautiful smiley face tan lines. we still have paint on our bodies as we speak, even after all of our awesome cold showers. tonight we are going to bed in new rooms (except for the guys), which the majority of our are going to have to adapt to.

Thank you so much Diane for all of your encouragement and support through your comments! And we would really appreciate and love if others would comment as well. Please pray for energy as we continue to build, for Jesus' love to flow out of us as we encounter the people of Jamaica, and also that there will be no hard feelings during our intense Dutch Blitz tournaments. #RatherBeBlitz'n

Love,

Hanna and Becca

Ps- Donna Andres, please inform the Thiessen household of this blog, because Tana is SOOOOO excited to hear their embarrassing comments!!  

 

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P is for PAM.

It was an early day for us.... a whopping 630 wake up (Not any different than any other day...). WHEW! We then all got in our fancy church clothes, and headed to Trumpet Call Ministries (The Meeting Place). This was a very interesting experience and we really got a taste of the different culture along with an earful of the screecher in the row behind us. "HALLELU^^^^^^JAH" "PREACH IT PASTOR!!!". It was an outstanding experience and amazing to see all the passion in those that attended the service. After 45 minutes of singing; their passion for Jesus was expressed in many ways, from yelling at the top of their lungs to kneeling and falling to the floor.  Lunch was good for most... although Tana and a select few did not enjoy the fatty Jerk Pork, while Brianna, alone, loved it. Then there came the market.. LET THE BARTERING BEGIN!!! From $30 to $29 (Millie's attempt) to, $56 to $12 (Cheyenne's handy work) we all ranged in our abilities. At the end of this thrilling expedition we all learned a few things 1. Stay as a group 2. Police officers like to be in your selfies 3. Greg has a sassy bone and 4. Sharing the love of Jesus is the best. At the end of the day it was back to the base with our new trinkets and skills, only to head to bed and wait for tomorrow to start building! Miss you all, goodnight <3

Love Brianna & Millie


No Shoes, No Shirt, NO PROBLEM (Sing to Kenny Chesney Song)

Just so everyone knows, we have always been wearing shirts. 

Hey Diane, thanks for stalking us and sorry its a little late! 

So starting off with sleeping in this morning till 6:45 which was majestic. Following was devos, and a fellow peer sharing his testimony, then we headed off in the bus for a two hour trip to Duns River. On the way there we stopped at Columbus Park where we met a man who was playing his guitar with a bird on the end, pretty right on! We also re-enacted the Titanic scene of Rose and Jack on the bow of the ship that was on the edge of the ocean at the park. Arrived in Duns River after a long drive of singing Hunter Hayes, as well as learning some Patwah worship songs from one of our YWAM hosts.  We got into our swim stuff and bought these ugly water shoes for climbing the waterfall. Our team went up the waterfall together for the first time, bonding through blood, sweat, tears, Cheyenne's stolen shoes, and team selfies in the water. After the first time going up we got to roam around the beach by the ocean or go up the falls again as we wanted. We got to hold this nasty smelling starfish and meet new some of the other climbers. We closed off Duns River with a visit to the markets just outside the falls. We then went for supper about thirty minutes from Montego Bay, at a place called Scotchie's for a Valentines Day supper. Then came back to the base and listened to amazing and inspiring testimonies and finished off the day with a Dutch Blitz tournament. (Which Chan and Tana won) Kasja did pretty mint too. All in all, great day. 

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Happy Valentines Day <3 

Tana and Kasja

"No Problem Country"

This morning lots of people were tired (not Jeannie), but excited to begin the day! Today began with Jamaica Relief Mission (JRM) which is about ten minutes from where we are staying. We continued on to Hopes Hospice, a place where the sick elderly stay. Lastly, we led a kids praise night on the base before supper. 

Once we got to JRM we observed the beautiful ocean view they had and how clean and organized it was inside and out. They only had four children there at the time, as the others were in school. The owner of the organization, Kevin and his kids also hung out with us and we got to know them as well. Soon we all got comfortable with the kids and after playing outside together we all went inside to teach each other fun action songs. It was a lot of fun interacting with each other and seeing the joy in the kids faces.

At Hopes Hospice, we spent time in different residents' rooms, visiting, sharing stories, singing songs, reading favorite Bible verses, and laughing and crying together.  We were each challenged to connect with one patient for at least 20 minutes, which many team members exceeded easily. Jeannie really enjoyed visiting most the time with one special lady named Novelette.  Her and many others impacted us through their faithfulness in hard times, and commitment to the Lord.

The Kid's Praise night was for children who live on the YWAM base or nearby.  We acted out the David and Goliath story, sang songs, preformed a skit, and got super sweaty dance-partying-it-up.

In the evening we were impacted by the testimonies that different team members shared in our meeting, and we look forward to getting to know one another better and all that God has in store for us!

We love you all and Happy Valentine's Day!!  

Jeannie and Cheyenne  

 

 

Day Two: What time is it?... SUMMER TIME!

Today we were able to go back to West Haven, as we drove there our team was filled with many mixed emotions some were excitement while others felt nervous for the day ahead. When we arrived we were able to join some residents in their school and see their excitement for learning. 

One thing that we learned these past few days was their love for singing, whether it was High School Musical or Jesus Loves Me you could always tell they were happy by the smile on their face. This afternoon we were able to see the joy they have for singing as we lead a few songs and helped them make a craft. They never failed to bring a smile to our faces. We also lead a skit for them which involved many close calls with people almost getting hit in the face, but this payed off from the sounds of the laughs that surrounded the area.  Its safe to say that we were all sad to say goodbye when the time came. 

Some highlights from today were Derek's contagious laugh throughout the day, random bursts of singing multiple High School Musical songs, and the simple joy in picking weeds with Kevin. 

Today we also celebrated Rebecca's birthday, this involved hearing the Jamaican way of singing Happy Birthday... which is a lot better than ours. Thank you for taking the time to pray for us and encourage us  through your comments, we would  really appreciate if you continued to pray for us throughout this journey. We could use prayers for energy and strength as we continue on. 

As we say here in Jamaica man, its a no problem country (Jamaican accent) From Jana and Kayci

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DAY ONE _ WEST HAVEN

Today we discovered that in some places in this world, the idea of our personal space/bubble is non-existent. The bubbles have burst. Often we talk about receiving a warm welcome and embrace, but today took things to a whole new level. We entered the gates of West Haven ( a home for people with mental and physical disabilities) a parade of people charging towards us, as soon as they arrived we received many hugs, kisses, and held many hands. We had apparently interrupted a race that was a training event for the coming Olympics and instead of stopping at the finish line they saw us and we became the prize! 

We had a short tour of the facilities, and then began our many encounters with a variety of characters and personalities. Our team then had the chance to spend time with, interact, and get to know the people living on the premises. We went for walks, sat at picnic tables and talked, sang songs, danced, played on the playground, and got tours of their bedrooms. The emotions were high from the beginning, they ranged from being overwhelmed,  terror, hearts breaking for the reality in front of us, and also excitement, joy and just having fun. 

A few Highlights of our day:   Waking up in Jamaica ( the view overlooking the bay and the sunrise was just incredible), Singing many Highschool Musical songs, awesome marker tattoos (not permanent), watching Christopher dance his heart out, watching Derek smile ALL day, the lunch time thief, and surviving the Jamaican roadways. 

Tomorrow we are heading back to West Haven for one more adventure, pray along with us that the love of God would be working in us and through us as we connect with the people there, that we can bring them joy and warm their hearts. Please also pray for peace in our hearts that our personal fears and nervousness that comes with this would be overcome by the power of the Holy Spirit. These will be memorable days, shaping who we are and growing us in our faith. God bless everyone back at home supporting us!  Enjoy the snow!

Pam, Greg, Joeline 

 

 

 

 

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We have arrived safety in Jamaica!! Thank you so much for your prayers!  We are all very tired and ready to get some rest.  Tune in tomorrow for some more stories about our time at West Haven.   

Joeline