Connecting with people is at the heart of MWC Assemblies. Participating in local tourism and serving with local ministries provided another chance to connect.
“I get a lot of value and joy out of helping people,” says Daniel Beachy, who signed up for a service activity. “It was a lot of fun planting trees knowing that they will grow to feed future people that attend the seminary”
Others went to an orphanage where “Singing together with actions helped to bridge the language barrier,” says Gerald Neufeld. Participant Hakjoon Ko (“Joe Ko”) taught a Korean song with actions that urged children and volunteers to learn something new.
“I learned from young volunteers that whatever work is done, it has to be done happily. All of them were always smiling and discharging their responsibilities,” says Ranjana Nath.
Some tours encountered barriers in seeing the sites, but “We met new people from US and Canada and had a great feast together, sharing our views and culture,” says Arpan Nath of India.
Sharing Indonesian food in a little café with mothers and their children from India was “the best part of the trip” says Carla Rupp from the USA who was also attending with her son.
Felo Gracia from DR Congo crossed cultural barriers on the tours. “I was the only black person in the two trips, but I felt that I was among family,” he says.
“The tour helped me in bonding with new people,” says Subhashini Biswas. “It was really heart warming to feel the same devotion and blessings and love we have for each other even though we all belong to different culture and country. I was able to see the deep connection that people have with the Almighty even when the world in general is undergoing the hardships of war, pandemics and political turbulence.”
“The tastes of durian and selabi were totally new for me”, says Didier Bellefleur from France. “The tours helped me to better discover the culture, history and countryside of Indonesia.
“I take away a more observant and open mind to evaluate things, both in my national church and my local congregation,” says Clemens Rahn of Paraguay.