Sunday, November 11, 2012

Fall Break, Zagreb, SEW!

Morning sunrise reflecting on the buildings outside our apartment window.

Psalms 28:7 - The LORD is my strength and my shield; My heart trusts in Him, and I am helped; Therefore my heart exults, And with my song I shall thank Him.

Much has been happening since our last post, so I thought I would try to catch you up on the Wiisanens in Vienna.  October 26th was the first day of Fall Break for the school.  The kids were out that Friday through the following week.  It was a much needed break for all of us.  Our break began with Billy and Mitchell taking an unscheduled trip to Zagreb, Croatia.  On November 2nd our 90 day tourist visa were going to expire, we found out that Mitchell would not be getting his resident visa and was required to leave the country (actually the European Union) for 2 days in order to renew his tourist visa for another 90 days.  So what does this mean.  Well, the rest of the family got visas on Friday November 2nd, but Mitchell will not get his until he passes the German A1 language exam.  This requirement applies to anyone 14 or older, however because Billy and I have college degrees, we do not have to pass the exam right away.   We are working with the school to come up with a plan to help Mitchell accomplish this.  He is currently enrolled in German class at school, but it will not get him to the level he needs to be at fast enough.  This is a little unnerving for us and has been weighing on Mitchell also.  We continue to trust God and pray for wisdom and discernment for His plan in helping Mitchell meet the German language requirement.  Billy and Mitchell enjoyed their little vacation, but decided that the train was the preferred mode of transportation over the bus, especially when it started snowing on the bus ride home (they took the train to Zagreb).  Before this trip, we really did not even know where Zabreb was. :)

Zagreb, Croatia

Also during Fall Break, Billy and I attended several days of Professional Development for the school staff.  It was nice to have a break from the classroom and lesson planning and to receive valuable information to help us teach.  The main focus was Biblical Integration, how to integrate the Bible into our lesson plans.  In addition, we were given teaching techniques to help with English Language Learners (ELL students) and teaching to various learning styles.  It was a very productive couple of days with a fun Staff Talent Show for entertainment.  We are blessed to work with a great staff at ICSV!

We had our first snow during Fall Break!  It was beautiful!  Needless to say it didn't last long, but for Floridians it was very exciting!  Lydia and I also enjoyed a visit to the Technisches Museum Wien (Technology Museum on Vienna). We also experienced our first club hockey game. Our friends' daughter Emilie is playing!!

I also got to bake and try some new recipes over the break.  It's a challenge to find easy recipes and new thing to make that I can get all the ingredients for.  We had cookies, enchiladas, and white chicken chili! YUM!

Spiritual Emphasis Week (SEW) began at school following Fall Break.  During the week, the students had chapel daily.  They got to hear powerful testimonies from both staff and other students.  I was impressed by a student who shared that she was a former Hindu and now a Christian, but that the rest of her family members are not believers.  She became a Christian at ICSV!  The focus of the last chapel of the week was the gospel.  Please pray the hearts of the studenst would be open to the gospel and that the seeds of faith would be planted.  Also pray they would see Christ in us and the staff of ICSV and commit their lives to HIM.

Fall is beautiful here in Vienna.  The colors of the leaves are beautiful, but it is definitely getting colder.  This weekend we attended Mitchell's soccer tournament and it was very cold and windy. They got third place!

By 5:00pm it is very dark and cold.  It is a hard time to be here, especially for Floridians who are used to the warmth and sunshine.  We tend to miss home, family, and friends more these days!  But as Lydia reminded us on her Facebook today, we are not alone!!  Never!  We have Christ with us!  May He give us wisdom, strength, and energy.  May we be filled with His joy and shine His light to the dark world around us.

Thank you for your support and prayers!!  Please continue to pray for Mitchell's visa and language learning. Also for our witness to the student at ICSV and our community here in Vienna.  We love you all so very much!

Love and Blessings to you all,
Ada (aka "Miss" Clair)