Thursday, April 12, 2012

Some work in Sweden

I spent my Easter holiday in Sweden. I took the two hour train ride over to Arrie (a very small country village outside of Malmo) and stayed with the American family living there. They have a large home, cafe, gallery, and barn on the property. Their goal is to start a coffee shop ministry and plant a church. However, the only buildings complete are the home, 2 galleries, and 1 room seating area for the cafe. Their is no bar or kitchen, all of that has to be built. During Easter time Malmo host a huge art round. Different artist rented the galleries on the property during this time. So, they decided to have a small trial cafe during this time. I went over to help. We served drip coffee, tea, hot chocolate, juice, and various cakes. We kept our prices low and took plenty of time to visit with those who came in. It was a pretty successful 4 days. Many people from Malmo were excited to here the plans of a future country cafe and we received a lot of encouragement. However, this time also opened eyes to how much work needs to be done. Not, just with the fact there is no kitchen, no bar, and no water source to the cafe area (although getting those things done is a massive job in itself), but they were hit with the realization of the time commitment it takes to just run a cafe day to day. You are not working only when the doors are open. You are prepping and cleaning as well. It was and eye opening weekend. We were left thinking, we have an amazing opportunity here, but it is going to take A LOT of work to get the building to operational. And after that, they really need some missionaries to help support them in working and doing ministry. But, dreams are big and we got to pray with one girl and have lots of conversations with others. All the hard work will pay off!
on the steps of the cafe

the view out of the window

our simple set up

the cafe side of the property

running on the beach in Malmo

castle in Malmo

castle ruins near Arrie
All work and no play makes Katie grumpy...... so we had our good times too. Even though I have traveled to this area a few times (even the week before with my visitor) I had never been able to see any of the sites around. And since I am slightly stir crazy (especially when I don't have my running time) I got to take some good running trips. I ran around the small farm roads of Arrie. But, I was also taken to Malmo and ran down the coast towards the bridge from Danmark to Sweden. It was a gorgeous view to see Kobenhavn in the back ground. Then we drove around the city and I got to see a few of the landmarks of Malmo. It was nice to see some more of the country. Overall it was a good, but tiring trip.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Visitor From Home

When I was contacted that a future missionary was interested in coming to visit me I wasn't sure what that meant. But, I am always excited to have visitors and to share with others who are interested in missionary work, so I said "yeah come on over." I got to spend about 10 days showing her what it was like to be a volunteer missionary in Northern Europe. It was very different from the places she had been before. I really enjoyed the time. It was like a gift from home for me. To have someone around that understood where I was coming from and someone to take places. It was fun to play tourist in the midst of all of the work. And yes we did get some work done in Sweden and in Greve. :)  We went over the the Sweden shop and painted and prepped the cafe room. We also got a chance to wander around Malmo and explore the down town area. It was a great break and joy for me to have someone from home. Sometimes we need that reminder and encouragement to keep going. And this visit was that for me!