Welcome to India

This blog is intended to make a country that most Westerners find to be otherworldly not so much so. We enjoy sharing our experiences, noting our observations, highlighting our impressions and otherwise recounting our adventures in India while helping our blogwatchers to be vicariously closer to this grand country. Welcome to India.

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Next Season of Life in India

Our beloved Thai friends in Bangkok.

With our friend James in Bangkok.

Jaya in a stroller but out of a car seat!

The banner that will be used for an upcoming Hula Hoop camp for 50 of our kids!

Jaya is held gingerly by our staff coordinator, Chinna.

Diamond is the matriarch of our entire organization.  

Towards the end of 2013 we were often asked, after all we had been through with Jaya and being home for the year, whether we had any doubts about returning to India as planned in January. 

On the contrary, January could not get here soon enough. That feeling of a job left undone was just too much to bear.  And in April, when we thought perhaps we might never leave the state again, much less the country or hemisphere, we were so disappointed.  

Then it all turned around for Jaya.

Originally, this was said to be a “1-2 year” commitment.

After two years and the job only half-done, it was three more years.

Then we found out we were pregnant and we inserted one year at home.

That adds up to six years of our life committed to India, five of which are on the ground.  Three years to go.

Starting now.

We left the U.S. on January 9th, one day after Paige turned 36.  Five days in Thailand and a few more days getting settled into a new apartment in the bigger city of Hyderabad, we are now able to start moving forward with our plans and vision for Covenant Children’s Homes 2014:

Solidifying sponsors for ALL 69 of our 5 – 10 children homes (545 children total).

  • Empowering and equipping our indigenous staff and pastors to successfully run this program without us (2013 showed we’re making progress, but not there yet).
  • Building our partner and advocate base – this undertaking must be a worldwide effort.
  • Preparing for a further expansion of children’s homes once these current homes are sponsored.
  • Develop the homes in this region of the state, western as opposed to eastern where Ongole is located.
  • Continue redeeming childhood for one Indian abandoned or orphaned child at a time.

We will be home in the States later this year to fulfill that which can only be done at home – the face-to-face that partnerships need and deserve.

But until then, we feel privileged and grateful to be here implementing a model of orphan care that will make such an impact for generations. 

Thanks for your help and support on every level!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Five Fun Facts from Sean & Paige to Start 2014

December 31st!  Growing up!

Jaya's parents can't find anything more joyful than Jaya's giggles.

A big girl on a big plane.

Everyone loves this picture for some reason.

CCH had another wonderful Christmas celebration this year.

We always have the children themselves participate heavily in the celebrations we have.

Just a few of the many gifts received by 545 children this year with CCH!

1.  Blown Away:  We had a public goal of raising $15,000 for our Christmas gifts for the children and a private goal of raising another $19,000 to cover unsponsored homes’ school fees for the rest of this academic year.  Both were vastly exceeded by the overwhelming generosity and encouragement of so many.  We are humbled.

2.  Miraculous Return:  We return to India on January 15th.  This is something we weren’t sure we would ever say again during April and only hoped for during May.  We are grateful.

3.  Financial Predicament:  With so much focus on our India children to finish the year, our own return to Hyderabad has almost caught us by surprise.  If you have intended to give to our personal support or have ever considered or expressed interest in partnering with us, now would be a wonderful time to take that next step. 100% goes to us - no administrative overhead!  We are appreciative.

Here is a good link to get you started: 

(Just mark "GN missionary/staff" and include "Sean and Paige" somewhere in the memo area.)

4.  Sean’s Mom, Dianne, will be joining us to India for the first couple weeks this time around.  A grand trip across the world for her, and a big help for Jaya, too!  We are thrilled.

5.  Big Move to Hyderabad for us, from small underdeveloped town to big metropolitan city.  It is just the right time for this, personally and professionally, and we are very excited for the next season of our work in India, and all that is to come in the future.  We are full of anticipation.

Thank you, partners, for your support in every way this past year in the States and for being alongside our unique journey in India, with Jaya, and with us. 

Happy New Year!