THE MONTH OF MAY
We need 5 people to make a game…Whose on worship?... We could have another school…
We’re gathered in the classroom, information for this Saturday’s event flowing so rapidly it’s hard to digest and retain. As of tomorrow, there’s 2 months left. When we first arrived, Mr. Steve told us that this year would be like taking a drink out of a fire hydrant hose, that the current pressure is so strong, it lifts you right off the ground, and gives the sensation of drowning.
The good kind of sensation of drowning, obviously.
This is crazy. I’ve done treasure hunts before…But this has four or five times more people. We’ve got to get through all the logistics, but it’s going to be fun.
Momentum number five was themed “Why the Bible is relevant to us today”. Some 70 students showed up to search for QR codes hidden throughout Jeju city. Our next Momentum will feature a South African Braai.
The first big event of May was the release of the new WOLBI site – celebrated with sparkling ade, grapefruit flavor. Woohoo!
Classes have been under the leadership of Professors Rick Griffith, Dave Merkh, and Steve Nicholes. We’ve been studying Ecclesiastes, Proverbs, Revelation, Soteriology, and New Testament Survey.
Dave and wife Carol Sue Merkh flew from Brazil to teach the Family Life Conference and the book of Proverbs. Avid hikers, they enjoy planning a mountain climb for each major wedding anniversary. Naturally, volcanic Hallasan, the highest peak in South Korea, was right up their alley. The trip had perfect weather and took 7 hours, round trip. Mr. Merkh’s knees are requesting that this hike count for their next big anniversary hike. The two left with great impressions upon the student body and are continuously prayed for as they continue to travel and teach.
Bible Club celebrated its kick-off with a Samgyeopsal barbeque party. This ministry is in its first season as an optional commitment for WOLBI students. One Saturday per month, the teams travel out to a church or school and provide a 2-hour program of games, drama, a sermon, and praying and sharing time. Each time has gotten better, and so far it’s been a very encouraging and successful effort.
Spring time has brought all kinds of new critter babies: Foals in the horse field directly next to our campus and two puppies from Mr. Jack’s watch dog. Slightly older, meet our campus puppy Boktole (Bringer of Luck). Mr. Tim became his dad 3 months ago and he’s been growing so rapidly it’s almost like looking at a different dog each day. At least he’s stopped crying and shaking whenever dad is gone. If anyone’s missing a show, we know who to chase down.
SYME Prep School (As described in our previous blog post) gave prospective 2016-2017 students a sneak peak of authentic WOLBI life. They lived in dorms, participated in quiet time, experienced classes, and washed hundreds of dishes at a time right with us. A best memory was bonding through games down at Gwakchi beach, where they were supposed to dig up cans of soda out of the sand. Unfortunately, most of the bottles were hid a little too well. A couple weeks after, student Mike was down at the beach and dug up a still intact bottle. "Quite refreshing." If you’re down at Gwakchi anytime soon, dig around, would ya?
Our YES Church body came together for a get-to-know each other Olle hike. Korean-style hiking is noticeably different from the Westerner vision – our six miles together was not up a rugged trail, but along the coast through various village neighborhoods. We could spot the Haenyo divers, Jeju women usually from fifty years old and up, who dive for seafood without supplemental oxygen for two to three minutes at a time.
Later, two students and our cook, Sammie Sickel, had the privilege of having a night of fellowship and delectable Indian food at the lovely home of Nancy and King from our YES Church body. They are from India, and are currently working in research labs at Jeju National University. We look forward to more dinners and celebrating their second wedding anniversary next month. Congratulations, Nancy and King!
We bid a fond and thankfully temporary farewell to Jill and Mike Ivey, missionaries and long time friends of Steve and Rhonda Nicholes. This past year, they have served in overseeing WOLBI Jeju administration and Bakery. Their son, Mitch Ivey, remains with us as a student. We look forward to their return from the US, just in time for graduation in August.
Cook Sammie Sickel’s mother, Debbie Sickel, visited from New Jersey. She spent most of her week here in the kitchen making goodies for students and exploring the island with her daughter. The girls got to hear her testimony and were both touched and encouraged by her strength. There were many tears and hugs when it was time to say goodbye.
Our last big event for the month of May was Open Dorms: For the first time this year, girls got to visit boys dorms and vice vera. Each had games to play and lots of show and tell. Dorm 3 provided a "Dress up like us" Photoshoot for the men.
Some of the best moments of this month was those spent in the dorm praying with my roommates for each other’s future. We were face-down, knees to the ground, Korean style (Everyone prays out loud and at once), telling God about how much we wanted His will done in the lives of each student here.
We ask you to pray for us as well. Many ESL students are in a waiting process for their visa in order to attend school in WOL, NY next school year. School has been bustling with Theology essays and various tests and quizzes along with ministry prep, and now a New Testament Survey Essay proposal.
Pray for the upcoming Visa Break (June 3-13) as we disperse all over the world – to Hong Kong, Japan, Peru, and Kazakhstan.
Please also pray for Brad Quakenbush, a faithful and favorite professor. He is recovering from a surgery to remove cancerous tumors and is going through physical therapy. The news of his sudden down-turn in health has been hard on our school. If you’re reading this, Mr. Q, we miss you and we are thinking of you (And all your duck ties).
Kelsey Wallace finished her last day on staff at Word of Life, New York. She and several others will be joining staff next year, ushering in big changes to move forward with our school’s growth. Current student, Sra Lim, will be working with Kelsey Wallace in the Admission’s Department. Please pray for them as they prepare and fundraise to serve in Jeju.