Two new missionaries from WMC
On August 3 two young women from the West Michigan Conference were commissioned as missionaries of the United Methodist Board of Global Ministries.
Darlene Logston is the daughter of pastors Russell and Jane Logston, who pastor Sodus Chapel Hill, Berrien Springs, Hinchman and Oronoko UMCs. Jane will enter service this fall as a US-2. US-2s serve for two years in a peace and justice ministry in the United States. Her assignment is to serve as the Garden Coordinator at the Primavera Foundation in Tucson, AZ. Darlene sees her US-2 experience as an opportunity to combine two things about which she is passionate: her faith and social justice. View her bio here.
Kelly Schaefer, a member of Kalamazoo Milwood UMC, will leave for Japan as a Mission Intern following her commissioning. She will work at the Asian Rural Institute, a training center for sustainable agriculture, servant leadership and community development. Kelly states that since childhood she has been deeply affected by the story of the disciples leaving behind their worldly possessions to follow Jesus. She says that mission work allows her to tangibly follow the inspiration she has gleaned from this story. Kelly's term of service in Japan is one and a half years after which she will complete her three year term in a similar ministry in the U.S. View her bio here.
Darlene and Kelly trained with 34 other young adults. Their commissioning took place during a celebration of 60 years of the US-2 and Mission Intern programs held in Arlington, VA, Aug. 2-5. The scriptural theme of this special reunion event is Living Stones for Transformation. Bishop Minerva Carcano was the speaker at the commissioning service. The class of 2012 represents nine countries and will be serving in 17 countries and ten annual conferences. Click here to view a video of the event held in Alexandria, VA..
One of their trainers is Thomas Kemper, who told the group that he does not believe he would be the general secretary of Global Ministries if he had not had the opportunity to serve as a young adult missionary. He said: "You need to be prepared for your life to be changed. I don't know what will happen to you. Be as open as possible to the new experiences that will happen to you. Let it influence and change you. It will bless you whatever you do after that."
Elizabeth Lee, executive of the Young Adults Mission Service Office, says, "The Living Stones conference will provide a sacramental occasion to celebrate and remember the impact the programs have had on participants, communities and the church; witness the commissioning of new young adult missionaries; highlight programmatic developments; and offer opportunities to support young adults in service and engage in mission.”
Darlene and Kelly are eligible for Advance Special support. Contributions for Darlene should be directed to Advance #3021516; Kelly Advance #3021506.