We departed Southern California last Sunday morning to begin our trek to Chattanooga for candidate school at BIMI Headquarters. After a long day of flights and driving, we arrived late Sunday evening and got settled for meetings that were to start early Monday morning.
Everything got started promptly on Monday morning at 7:30. There were twenty-four candidates at school this winter, eleven couples and two singles. After a devotion from our candidate director we took a doctrines test. We both passed it and then went into sessions covering how to handle deputation. After lunch we began the interview process. We met with the European field director, two other field directors, and a local pastor. We gave our salvation testimonies, our call to the field, and answered questions they had regarding our ministry, family habits, and plans for the field. This first committee approved us to go before the board of directors in the evening. After dinner the board meeting began and we were called before the board to again give our testimonies and answer questions about our field. We were approved by the vote of the board and Dr. James Ray challenged us all to be faithful and steadfast in our calling. What a relief and joy it was to be approved and know we are now officially on our way to the field.
On Tuesday we had more classes regarding deputation, putting together presentations, and handling our finances. Wednesday morning we got up and began our travels home.
We had a great time at candidate school. We met some new friends, got to know the people who work at BIMI, met some veteran missionaries, and were approved by the board to go forth to our field. It is a blessing to know that we have people in our home church, our families, and at the mission board who have a desire to help us succeed and beseech God on our behalf. As we look forward to the change in our ministry that is quickly approaching, we do it both with some apprehension, but also with the resolve that this is what God has called us and prepared us to do. We look forward to following God's will and being obedient to Him. We appreciate your continued prayers.
We are a family on our way to the mission field of the United Kingdom. Ryan, Elisabeth, Samuel, and James
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