Hello, everyone! It is just so incredible to me to think that 10 days from now, I will be in an airplane on my way to Italy! God has been so good to me this past year, orchestrating everything perfectly and leading me to this place. I’m so blessed.
As I had you pray for last month, my visa came through and my funding is at 100%! [If anyone would still like to give, you are more than welcome. It’s always good to have a little extra in the account in case of emergency situations.] It was a crazy trip getting to this point, but I’ve seen the Lord working the whole way.
For example, it was not easy getting my visa. The first trip that I made with my mom to the Italian Consulate in Houston, they would not allow me to apply. The man refused to let me apply for the religious visa, saying that only ordained ministers, priest, or nuns could apply. I tried explaining how my other teammates had already been issued religious visas as missionaries from other Consulates and were currently in Italy. He was unmoving though, and I left in tears. We spent the next couple of days getting a letter from ReachGlobal put together explaining how my Commissioning Certificate is equivalent to an ordination and that, according to Italian law, that should be sufficient for a religious visa. When we went back to Houston, we still had to argue with the man at the Consulate [yes, the same employee] to get him to let me apply, but finally he said he would allow it even though he made it clear that did not think it would be approved. He still made us jump through several hoops that no one expected we would encounter, and I was becoming doubtful that I would receive my visa. However, a week later, I got the envelope back in the mail. It arrived so quickly that I was sure it had to have been declined, but when I opened it, there was my shiny new visa in my passport! I was squealing and jumping up and down. God provided faithfully, even as I doubted.
I know He will continue throughout this coming year to provide my every need and to give my opportunities to trust that He will. I know that it will be a time of stretching and growth, and it won’t be easy, but it will be so worth it. I’m excited and I’m ready.
PS – A big THANK YOU to all of my prayer warriors and supporters! Please continue to pray as I prepare to leave and prepare to serve. You are much appreciated!