MEET YOUR NEIGHBOR
In December of 2006 Merika Tuononen left Newbold College in England to volunteer for six months at an Adventist Language School in Bangkok, Thailand. Merika, a native of Finland, has been in Bangkok for more than eight months now, teaching English as a Second Language to young children. Merika enjoys teaching the children and feels God has given her a mission in Thailand. She says, “I desire the children to learn English, but besides that I would like them to learn what is right and what is wrong, who God is, and how His love has changed my life.”
Although she admits that living in a completely different culture has been an adjustment and that teaching is challenging, Merika says, “I’ve had the best time in my life. Even though I am a teacher here, I feel like I am the one who is learning the most.” If you would like to read stories about other Adventist volunteers around the world, or learn about how you can participate in the volunteer program, go to www.adventistvolunteers.org.
Many years ago my 2-year-old niece, Lori, spent the afternoon and night with us. This was Lori’s first time away from her mother for an entire night. She played happily with my children all afternoon.
Before putting the children to bed, I read their Sabbath school lesson to them. Then I asked each one to say the memory verse, which was, “I will arise and go to my father” (Luke 15:18). When Lori’s turn came, she said, “I will arise and go to my mother.” It was then that I knew she was lonely and missing her mother.
—Lois E. Davis, Deer Lodge, Tennessee, United States
“When we blend our lives with those in need, a tapestry is woven from threads beyond this world. A pattern rich and vibrant eclipses every possible combination that we alone possess.”
—Paul Opp, president, People of Peru Project, Iquitos, Peru