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March 2022: Home, Work, Ukraine, and a tribute to a lost student, Tia. March 13, 2022

Filed under: Family,Updates — GoWests! @ 10:32 pm

You can view this update as a video directly here. For a few more written details, keep reading below. Tia’s story and video link, and some family pics, are at the end. Love to all!

Jeremy and Molly

Hello friends!

Time for an update. It seems that if we don’t do these regularly, so much happens between communications that it becomes a challenge to describe life over here.  This is a bit longer than usual because I would like to cover some important updates. Read on for…

  • Family Update
  • Work update
  • Ukraine involvement
  • “In memory of Tia”.  Oct 2002 – Mar 2022

On the home front, Joel is a Senior (12th grade) and working on his final thesis project. He just turned 18 and is taller than me! He is a great young man, growing and maturing so well.  He keen sense of justice, concern for people, and a steady head are becoming obvious trademarks of his character.

Eden is loving 8th grade, and especially Volleyball, both for school and local club.  Now 14, and taller than mum, she is growing up so fast! She loves school, and frankly, is quite good at it.  She also has wonderful relationships with her teachers, which is not only pleasing, but quite fun.

Samuel just turned 20.  We can hardly believe it. He has just returned from his own DTS. He did his in Tijuana Mexico, with his outreach in Egypt and Jordan (as you most likely know). He loved it. He has grown in his love of people, the lost, and the marginalized. He is currently connecting with the YWAM campus here in Montana, as well as working at his own window cleaning business to make money for more studying later this year.   

March is already here, which means on the work side of things, last month we graduated our Fall DTS. While they were on outreach the Winter DTS started, and are now about leave for outreach themselves, sending teams to Columbia and Panama.  Then in April we are running our leadership school, DTS Equip.

Many have been asking if we (YW) are involved in Ukraine. The answer is yes. Ukraine is one of our campuses focus nations, sending teams there regularly and supporting various missionaries and locations across the country.

In February I made the call to withdraw one of our DTS outreach teams from there early, just before the hostilities started. I have been there a few times myself and have worked with many of the staff who serve there. They are good people. Committed, caring, and responsible. All the YW locations in Ukraine have been impacted intensely. Some are closed, while others have remained with their own staff as well as consolidating staff from other locations and serving the locals.

For security reasons I have removed a lot of information about this topic online. Apologies. Just know that our people are wonderful and working sooooo hard.

I would like to wrap up with a short testimony, and encouragement, in a very sad circumstance. This last week, one of our Fall DTS graduating students Tia Cordell (19), died at home.  She was a wonderful young lady, actively involved in her church youth and college group, passionately devoted to her own discipleship, the discipleship of others, and missions. Tia was about “5ft-nothing” tall, yet she was large of heart. To get to her DTS in Montana, this small lady drove 7 days across the country, by herself, sleeping in her truck, to join us last September. She went to Thailand on outreach, where she ministered to kids, women in prostitution, and local villages, and prayed with people to accept Christ. She was scared at times, but loved it, Tia also suffered from Cystic Fibrosis, was diabetic, and had issues with her liver and kidneys due to her history of treatment. But she never gave up or complained. She was selected to share for the Thailand team to the entire campus upon their return (you can see her brief 5-minute report via the link below).  She left here the day after and was doing ok, just a little run-down. By the time she returned home, she was very ill. She had picked up influenza and was fighting that with a bad liver and kidneys. Deteriorating quickly, she was moved to Johns Hopkins hospital to await both lung and liver transplants. She never recovered enough to undergo the surgeries. 

Tia’s death last Wednesday shocked all her team, classmates, friends, and staff.  In communicating with her parents, I was astounded at their grace and poise during this unbearable loss. But knowing their daughter, they knew that everything she was about was centered on knowing Jesus and making Him known, their desire is that through her life, and death, other young people will be so motivated that they would also consider the value of going when they can, and not waiting for a better time.

We never know when we may meet our Lord. My prayer and take away from this have simply been hoping that each day I spend my life on earth, would be a day well spent. She lived her life fully, with no regrets. 

Thank you following and partnering with us Together we are making a difference. Not only with us, but with the countless numbers of those we work with, like Tia.  We can’t do wat you do in your space, so do it well!  We do what others can’t do in our space, and so we try to do the same.  It’s a privilege working with you all and knowing so many are praying and joining with us.  Love and blessings,

Jeremy and Molly.

Samuel’s DTS graduation in TIjuana. He is in the dark bule shirt center left.
 

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! December 27, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 5:59 pm

Greetings from a very snowy (and cold) Montana! 
Merry Christmas and a very happy new year! Among all of the other emails, cards, letters and phone calls you must be receiving right now, please allow us to add ours.  We wish all of you – our friends, family and partners in life and ministry- a very happy and grateful Christmas. We are truly blessed, and it’s hard to celebrate Christmas without gratitude! How could we? We have so much to be thankful for, even amid hardships we may face.  Allow me to do a quick update and bring you up to speed on life with us.

The kids are beautiful, growing, and doing well.  Samuel is currently in the Middle East on his field assignment for his school.  From the Pacific Ocean to the Red Sea, he is doing so well, and very much at home traveling (very) cross-culturally. The work is tough there, but he also has a fresh appreciation for the freedom and joy Christianity brings to communities and cultures – something he is not experiencing where he is (no photos available of him at this time). Joel is in his senior year, still trying to decide what to do next. He has several college options, but I think his decision will emerge closer to May! Eden is an energetic 8th grader. Growing so well, and so much fun. Molly and I are really enjoying having a week or two off at the moment; well-needed, and very appreciated.  

On the work front, we have several teams out in the nations on their outreach assignments, from Eastern Europe to Asia they are spread out and doing well. in a week a new batch of DTS students arrive and begin their 5-month journey of discipleship growth, discovery, and missions.  We are never idle!  Recently I have been able to begin travelling again. Teaching in both DTS’s and leadership schools (Equips), it is nice to be able to see and teach in person. I have been to locations in Europe and the US, even having Molly with me for one of them (so much fun!). Add to this the growing online engagements that have not waned but grown over the last year. Two weeks ago, I was teaching classes in Amsterdam, Montana, and Cambodia; sometimes all in the same day! I love it.  This next season promises more of the same. 
Thank you for all of your Christmas love and joy this season. We look forward to seeing on the other side of 2021! 

With much love and gratitude, Jeremy, Molly, Sam, Joel and Eden. 

 

October 2021 – the written version October 23, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 7:05 pm

Hello again.

For those of you who don’t want to wathc a video, here is the gist of the recent video update, in text form! Blessings

JW

Hello dear friends 

Straight away allow me to apologize for the lapse of updates. As many of you can appreciate, the last 6 months have been crazy. However, we also celebrate this fact! That we have been able to run schools, programs, training, and outreaches consistently since September 2020, is a proud achievement. Our schools keep growing, as do our staff and volunteer numbers. 

I (Jeremy) have started traveling and teaching again, with three trips this Fall including one to Europe for a new leadership school run by a dear friend and prior staff, I am finding my schedule full. Molly is still doing her usual exemplary job, assisting the Directors of the Campus here, and being a rock-star mother.

The kids are doing so well, and keeping us busy also. Samuel finished a year of college, and is now in his DTS in Tijuana, Mexico. He is loving it and we can tell he is thriving. Joel is in his final year of high school, and a great guy who loves soccer, and a proud senior. Eden is blossoming at school, in volleyball, and with her many friends. She just turned 14 (we can hardly believe it, but couldn’t be more proud).  

Summer is over, and Fall is upon us. Here in Montana, we will feel the steady tightening grip of enter soon enough! We have attached a few pics below as a quick visual catch-up.

Thanks for following along with us, and doing this journey together! 

With love and gratitude for our many friendships, 

Jeremy and Molly.

(The video version of this post: https://youtu.be/HSthFY8QCrM)

 

Video hello! October 2021 October 18, 2021

Filed under: Family,Updates — GoWests! @ 10:20 pm

Hello there!

I am sorry this has taken so long to get out, but here is a short video blog and a few pics.

Thank you for following along with us and supporting our journey!

Gettin’ it done together!

Jeremy, Molly and Fam.

https://youtu.be/HSthFY8QCrM

 

A 2.5 min look at 2021, DTS Vision YWAM Montana April 4, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 3:17 pm

Hey everyone.

We produced this a few months back and it has been rotating on our website. I just saw it again and thought, “well, maybe some others might like a very quick look at how we see 2021?”. I oversee our Discipleship Team, which includes our entire DTS Department, the focus of this video.

Enjoy the next 2.5 minutes,

Jeremy

 

Hola from Mexico! Feb 2021 February 14, 2021

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 1:22 pm

Hello everyone!

Here is a video update from Tijuana Mexico, where we just closed out our recent Fall 2020 DTS. Some work news, a family update, and some sunshine (yay!).

A few photos at the bottom here also, but first, a really fun video from one of our 4 outreach teams, this one from Mazatlán, Mexico. Check it out:

 

Molly Just Had Shoulder Surgery September 13, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 11:50 pm

Update from the Westside, Sept 2020: Molly just had surgery! 

Hi there team.

My sincere apologies if this announcement and update catches most of you by surprise.  There was no plan to keep this a secret; events simply unfolded so quickly over the last week that we have been all caught a little off-guard.

For the last few months Molly has been receiving physical therapy for a shoulder injury that has been plaguing her for about a year now.  The short version is this: the PT wasn’t working, so they referred her to an orthopedic surgeon for an MRI.  They discovered that she had a torn cuff and labrum in her shoulder, and possible Biceps tendon damage.  In a consultation last Monday, they told her this, and the only long term solution was surgery (these injuries actually will not heal themselves).  She opted for a surgery opening within 5 days! That was last Friday. With just a little time to prepare and reorganize “life”, and the kids going back to school the same week, our lives went into focused-life-management mode!  This also meant our communication network got neglected behind. Again, sorry! 

The good news is that we have excellent medical care here, and the surgery seems to have gone well although a little more extensive than was first expected. They did the labrum and cuff repair, but needed to reattach her bicep tendon to her shoulder.

Since then, the only real hiccup was that we found ourselves back in the ER the same night. Molly was starting to have some trouble breathing (this is a potential symptom of post-surgery complications when they use a nerve block with general anesthesia). After a chest x-ray for a possible collapsed lung, and then a CAT scan to check for a blood clot, she was eventually released with the diagnosis of “diaphragmatic irritation” due to anesthesia.  While this is excellent news, it made for a very long day for Molly.

Back home and OK, you’ll be relieved to know that I myself was able to battle through it all and get to bed by 1am. 🙂

As I write this Sunday night, she finally seems to be getting some sleep. She had a hard night last night and day today, as she began to react poorly to her pain medication.  We think we are back on track now (we will see) and all I can pray for is a good night of sleep for Molly; her body needs it. While she is a real trooper, believe me, she needs her sleep.

Please pray for her. She is in pain, which is expected, but it just makes life very difficult, and not very do-able!  (Apparently this surgery is rated among the most painful of recoveries, and will take weeks-months).  

We have also been blessed to be receiving help from so many people without ever asking for a single thing. Friends and family are being so faithful.

On the family front, it seems the summer is slipping away and the Fall is bullying it’s way in.  The kids are back in school last week, and Samuel has started college locally.  We are moving forward with opening the campus for schools and programs in a week, which is exciting, but in these times especially make for a lot of work, and just a bit of “excitement”.

Thanks for working and walking alongside us, as always. 

Jeremy (with Molly, Sam, Joel, and Eden!)

Five [arthroscopic] holes for surgery
And the ever present Boomer, on duty, as usual
 

June 2020 Westside Update June 24, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 9:19 pm

Hello dear friends and family.

(FYI, some photos at the end…)

Time is flying by. It’s hard to believe that 5 months have passed since we started tracking the outbreak and the implication of Coronavirus in Asia for all of our YWAM schools, ministry travel for Spring and Summer.  Not only that, the kids went to online schooling, and Samuel graduated High School, and has since started college online!

Life in the Discipleship Department

Late January we were relocating teams around Asia and Europe, examining travel routes, and setting up protocols for teams returning to Montana. Early in February and March we were changing destinations for outgoing schools (multiple times) and ultimately, cancelling outreaches and upcoming schools. The Spring DTS had to be canceled, and our leadership school DTS Equip was also pushed to next year.  Late May we cancelled our Summer schools also.

While all that was happening, we have been expanding our regular campus routine into more local community outreaches, expanded online ministry, and more local training and development of staff. This has proven to be a special “hidden” blessing for us as a campus. With our regular routine of non-stop training, sending and receiving teams back, we would never be able to effectively shut down our campus to incoming students and focus purely on staff development and community outreach.  I (Jer) have been able to host different training seminars for our entire Discipleship department, as well as prepare for a large influx of new staff come July.  In all, we are expecting 18 new staff to arrive this Fall; an amazing and encouraging development for us.

In terms of travel and teaching, after two trips in January and February, we have been effectively grounded.  But, not idle.  I have been able to teach via Zoom to DTS leaders and staff all over the country simultaneously in single sessions, plus teaching staff groups in Spain, Cambodia, Netherlands, and even preaching in a church in another state.  We have been to an online wedding, and I am even performing one next month!  Fun times.

Family life

The kids did really well transitioning so abruptly to online learning. While the boys didn’t enjoy it as much, Eden was in heaven.  She loved it!  She loved going to school, but being able to set up her own school schedule, work place, and being able to hang out all day with mum and dad (we were also working from home).

Samuel’s high school graduation was a highlight for us, and for him.  Although so many seem to be struggling with the inability to graduate as usual, we were able to have an outside, distanced, graduation. While Sam really missed all of the social events leading up to it in his Senior year, he was quite happy to graduate with less fuss than normal 🙂

Since school’s end then kids have been working and socializing as much as able.  Summer is just getting into full swing over here.  Thanks for following along, staying in touch, and supporting us in all the ways all of our “team members” do.

Love and blessings on your family too!

Jeremy, Molly, Samuel, Joel and Eden.

 

News from the Westside, April 2020 March 30, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 2:53 pm

Hi Everyone!

Please find our video update via the link below.

A few minutes of personal and ministry update from our living room, as we “Shelter in Place” under our Governor’s order.  🙂

Hope this finds you well.  Want to Facetime or Skype? Just let us know.  We’re working from home now!

Jeremy and Molly

 

Cambodia 2019, Report January 15, 2020

Filed under: Uncategorized — GoWests! @ 5:35 pm

Dear friends,

We are finally sitting down to share about our family trip to Cambodia!  It was AMAZING. God fulfilled so much in each of us and used us to encourage and train the saints there.  It was so good to be back in Cambodia together as a family. How to explain it all without writing a novel?!

God so clearly went before us.  On our way there, we were boarding our final flight in Hong Kong and noticed a group of young people getting on with us….hmmm 🤔…turns out we knew one of the guys (a family friend from Australia) and he was on a DTS outreach team from Australia to Battambang! This outreach team was awesome and they welcomed our boys to join in ministry with them.  So Sam and Joel got to do work projects and ministry with them while we were there. Sam was particularly impacted and connected closely with a couple of the guys.

We went to a village slum near the railroad tracks and loved on some children, played games, gave baths, had snacks, sang songs and shared about Jesus.  It was heartbreaking yet wonderful.

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We did some manual labor projects at “Cafe Eden” which is a YWAM restaurant that trains up Cambodians in business, discipleship and leadership.

Relaxing after a very sweaty day

 

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Molly got to meet with many different gals (Cambodian and Foreign) who serve in leadership positions and encourage and pray with them – just love them really. This was a huge highlight.

 

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The boys were constantly down on the soccer field meeting Cambodians and playing with them. 

We got to help with and attend a wedding: one of our past DTS students, Izzy from WA state, marrying Socheat from Cambodia!

IMG_8885Eden spent time with some precious kiddos and loved every minute of it!

IMG_8801

We offered a training seminar for DTS leaders and staff from all around the country. Jeremy did the lions share, but I also taught a few afternoons. This was incredible. Jeremy spent a ton of time with various leaders offering his wisdom and encouragement.  These guys so appreciated it!

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We spent time with old friends and made new ones!

We hit the ground running….and fully engaged until it was time to say goodbye.  As we were leaving, taxiing on the runway, and the sun was setting, Eden said, “Mom, you know what makes Cambodia so special? It’s the people.”  I couldn’t agree more.

And we shed some tears as we took off. What a rich time it was. Rich in spirit – which is the kind of rich we seek to be.

Thank you for praying for us and supporting us!

❤

Jeremy and Molly

KIDS HIGHLIGHTS…AND I QUOTE!!

Sam’s Highlights

  • “Seeing how God has influenced people to invest in Cambodia – the faith and confidence they had to go and now it is such a huge ministry.”

  • “Enjoyed jumping in with DTS outreach team. The spirit in the team was so joyful and deep.”

Joel’s Highlights

  • “Being in another culture.”

  • “The food.. well, the rice”.  (Mom comment: I cannot believe he said food when I asked about highlights!! Joel was diagnosed with Celiac disease 2 years ago, and I prayed that he would see he could still travel into the 3rd world and be ok. God is so faithful!)

  • “Bunking with the Cambodian guys.” (Sam and Joel stayed in a room with Cambodian staff guys, while Eden, Jeremy and I stayed in a room in a different building)

  • “Seeing how happy people are with so little.”

Eden’s Highlights

  • “Meeting people and getting to know them.”

 

 
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