Why am I traveling in Europe for 2 months?
My Europe Voyage is a spiritual pilgrimage of following the Spirit as I listen to the stories of the people of the lands I cross. From March 23 to May 22 I’ll journey through much of Western Europe to discover my ethnic heritage. I long to understand the spiritual richness and beautiful characteristics of the peoples I come from and to hold them as treasures. As I learn about my people’s convoluted history, I will sit, ponder, celebrate and lament.
How did this come about?
One day in winter of 2015, crossing the western US at 40,000 feet, I told God I wanted to travel to Europe. I heard Him say, “What is in your heart?” and I started dreaming with him. Since my brief stop in England 10 years ago, which was abruptly cut short due to depression, I’ve longed to go back and really experience Europe: see cousins and friends, visit ancient and sacred sites, learn about my people. But all of this was a fantasy until my director heard my idea and told me I should do it. Over the next several months I continued to pray and seek the Lord. I heard Him say, “Pray & Go” and then watched as every door opened before me. Read the full story.
How do I have time to do this?
InterVarsity staff have the blessed opportunity of applying for Sabbatical every 7 years. I have just completed my 7 years and have been granted a 6 month break from normal campus ministry duties to rest and explore a personal learning project. I count this a special privilege not granted by most employers. In keeping with God’s instruction for the Jewish people (his model nation) to rest from the work of planting for an entire year every 7 years, our organization sees the value for rest and refreshment for the longevity and well-being of staff. We believe that in taking Sabbatical we will do our jobs better, coming back with greater depth of understanding, clarity of vision, and refined skills for our ongoing work with students. I’m so grateful my director encourages her staff to take Sabbatical!
How do I have money to do this?
Thanks to my regular InterVarsity donors* also seeing the value in this season, I get to take a paid Sabbatical. I continue to receive my regular paycheck. Granted, traveling in Europe will cost more than my normal expenses in Honolulu, Hawai’i. I have been able to save through subleasing my room, earning credit card points, and doing a little extra work on the side. What I have should get me from place to place as I enjoy the hospitality of family and friends in cities across Europe.
I still imagine my budget will be pretty tight and may limit me from certain opportunities (e.g. I’d love to get a train pass which runs around $500 so I can see the landscape rather than flying over it). If you are inspired by the vision of my journey and would find joy in helping to sponsor my trip, you can send a gift to my paypal. Please feel no obligation! Only give if you’re itching to be a part of my voyage in this way. (If you do contributed & would like to receive a postcard from one of my stops in Europe, email me your address!)
*InterVarsity staff support the ministry work on campus buy personally fundraising with individuals and churches who believe in the mission—my donors are a wonderful part of my team!
How can you journey with me?
I’m glad you asked! (Well, actually, I asked for you.)
READ: I realize not everyone has the chance to jump on a plane and join me for a leg of the trip (but if you do, let me know!). For those staying home, I invite you to follow my voyage through my regular blog posts. Subscribe to get them emailed to you! (click the blue button on the top of the right column)
WATCH: I also intend (but don’t hold me to this!) to post short video updates which you can keep up on by subscribing to my YouTube channel.
COMMUNICATE: While I’ll be traveling alone and wrestling with a lot of new discoveries and big questions, I’d love to have a community dialoguing with me through blog comments or personal emails. It would mean so much to hear your point of view! While I will not be able to respond to every