September 23, 2019 by Joshua and Tamara Mathew Consolidation Process Six months ago we told you about the plan to merge 2 schools into one. MANY meetings and more conversations continue to bring staff and students closer to that reality. Our co-workers in Waukesha, WI have been working hard to make the necessary physical adjustments to the campus to make sure we’ll all fit, and the Consolidation Leadership Team has been “shuffling players around” to get us all on the field in the right positions. While the logistics of a merge like this are one level of crazy, trying to wrap our minds around how to move our family to a new ministry location has been the newest thing for us to trust God with. We are confident that this is all part of getting the gospel to people that have never heard. At this point, May 2020 will see the last class of students graduating from the Jackson campus. At times, it feels surreal to even type out those words. Philippines Trip Emma and I had a life altering trip. On many levels it was the ideal trip! Emma had never been out of the country and I was able to go with her and see her experience new and strange culture, and I got to go and see current (and former!) students doing and being the very things that we had been part of training them to do and be. We were able to spend multiple days in the middle of a remote-enough village surrounded by people whose language we did not know. We got to put many gallons of sweat equity into a small church outreach/ construction project and then see what missionaries went through to learn language and culture, in an immersive setting. WE SAW SO MUCH! There is not enough space in this update to include it all, but we’d love to come share firsthand, what God IS doing. The Kids… Smallest to tallest this time, okay? Jonah just turned 3! He decided that he’d potty train himself and we had it done in about 3 days. Almost the easiest one. He’s healthy and a big boy. Ezra is just a couple inches smaller than his “big brother” Isaac and doesn’t show signs of slowing down any time soon. That boy still seems to hate the idea of sleeping, but he manages just enough to stay mischievous! I am told he bears NO CHARACTER RESEMBLANCE to his father at this age (or any other!) Isaac is in 1st grade, reads like his father and has almost as many questions (about everything!) as his grandmother. Addie is back in to violin lessons at the Jackson Symphony Orchestra, thanks to community scholarships. She is also playing volleyball and made the middle school varsity team! 7th grade has been good for her, so far! Emma (though the oldest, is no longer the tallest!) is in her junior year at Western and HAS HER DRIVER’S LICENSE! What has happened to the years?! Aside from visiting the Philippines, and serving up at Barakel, her summer was pretty “slow.” She and Josie made the cast of the high school musical (Seussical The Musical, this fall) and have logged many hours already treating us to Dr. Seuss’ magical tunes. Josie is a freshman and doing well. She has already earned the nickname “J-Dawg,” much to her enjoyment. Semester Kick-off Last, but certainly not least! We are officially into our 4th week of the final fall class at Ethnos360 Bible Institute Jackson. It is a bittersweet and almost surreal feeling, as we make plans for “the last” things here. We started off with 33 single guys (about half of our usual) and so things are already quieter than we’re accustomed to. Our student leader crew is strong and a joy to work with. It seems that they feel the heaviness, as well, as we prepare to move over to Waukesha.