As we prepare for Papua New Guinea this year, we would like to introduce you to some of the work we will be doing in the future. In less than a year we will find ourselves learning a new culture and language. Have you ever thought of how much our language is influenced by our culture? Even in North America, the region we live in determines the meaning of words. A “camp” in northern Vermont is a “cottage” elsewhere. A “night crawler” in Vermont is a “dew worm” in Ontario. What about idioms and sarcasm? Our language is not 100% understood just by learning English from a book. The job of learning a new culture and language will require a lot of time and dedication. It will also require humility… we will be laughed at a lot:)
Ellen and Noah had the opportunity recently to visit friends that are learning language and culture just south of Bogota, Colombia for a week. They went to encourage their friends, but ended up learning a lot about our next phase of training by observing their friends in this process. When we land in Papua New Guinea, we will spend the next several months “getting out there” and learning about the culture, spending many hours a week with a native speaking language helper as well as studying on our own. The faster we learn the language and culture… the faster we can form relationships and feel like we are “at home” and settled. It will be easy to want to “hide” or do things that are North American, but we need to dive into the culture. Ellen and Noah were thankful to see their friends doing just that in Colombia… trying new foods that they have adopted as new favorites, meeting and visiting with new friends in the market (even when their language wasn’t perfect) and many other things. Our family will be doing this in Papua New Guinea with the national language BEFORE moving to a village and learning that language as well. With God’s help, we can do this!
Come with us to WAYUMI in October! Click for details.
Thank you for praying for us! Our year of support raising is going so well. Praise the Lord, our support is at 48% and we now have 31 people signed up as prayer partners. If you’d like to be one of our prayer partners and receive a list to pray for every other month, e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org Also, if you would like to be one of our financial partners you can e-mail us or visit https://swensontribe.wordpress.com/give/. We’d love to have you on the team!
Praise and Prayer:
- Praise the Lord for His faithfulness as He raises our support and has allowed the family to have a great transition back to Vermont!
- Pray for our future village… for hearts hungry for God’s truth.
- Pray for us as we travel throughout the comes months. See where we’ll be: Swenson family schedule.
What Have We Been Up To?
After an invitation from a friend and a great deal on plane tickets (and the USD/CAD exchange rate), Ellen and Noah joined two friends from New Tribes Mission of Canada to go visit friends in Colombia who are currently learning culture and language. They thought the trip would be an encouragement trip, but they felt like they learned so much as well. Seeing the realities of the every day difficulties of understanding people while learning their language is tough and requires a daily dependence on the Lord! Their trip was in March and then in early April we moved back to Vermont. We have been very busy homeschooling and telling folks about our ministry. Currently, the kids are with the grandparents and we are at a missionary medical class in North Carolina after stopping to see our friends at the Grace Brethren Church in Telford, TN. We praise God for sustaining us on this roller coaster of a year! He is so faithful!
We’ve created a new page with information from our kids. It will be a place where they will be able to share their perspective on our journey. See their top 10 list of things they are looking forward to in PNG!