Announcing a New Season

Four years ago this month, when we finally said yes to God and started to proceed with moving to Ethiopia, we had no idea what God had in store.  Had He said, “You’re going to move in next door to the slum and open a day care that will grow to 110 kids in a year and a half”, well…I’m not totally sure we would have gotten on that plane.  When we step back and take a look, it truly is amazing to consider all that He has done and continues to do.  There have been so many times when challenges or obstacles were impeding the way forward, yet God moved as He carried the vision forward that He had in mind long before we ever came on the scene.  We have loved being part of all that God is doing in and through Embracing Hope Ethiopia these past few years.

We now believe that God is bringing a new season into the life of EHE and also for our family.  As we sit on the edge of it, there is much excitement and anticipation, as well as some butterflies in our stomachs.  As I’ve heard Gary Best (national director of the Canadian Vineyard) say hundreds of times – “This is the joy and the sheer terror of Kingdom living.”

This new season is going to involve me (Jerry) taking on a new role here in Ethiopia.  As of March 17th, I am becoming the Senior Pastor of the International Evangelical Church – Addis Ababa. (http://www.facebook.com/IECAddis).  This is  an amazing church with over 50 different nations represented every Sunday morning in worship together.

But, the larger questions is, “What will this mean for Embracing Hope Ethiopia?”

It does mean some change.  I will no longer be as involved in the day to day activities of EHE.  This actually is part of the dream that God put in our hearts when EHE was starting – that there would come a day when the day to day operations were in the hands of nationals.  Let me say – we have amazing nationals who run the day to day  (and have been for most of the past 2 years) and care for these families in unbelievable ways.  God has provided a wonderful team – and it is time for them to run with all of it.

Christy will continue to volunteer part time with EHE on the ground.  She will continue to assist in the training of staff and moms specifically in the areas of handicrafts, care giving and education.

I will continue to serve as the Executive Director of EHE on the US side.  In this role I will continue to be a bridge to the on the ground activities for donors, our board and sponsors.  I will also continue to raise awareness and be the communication point person for the organization.

Adam and Christie Derloshon are still anticipating arriving in Ethiopia within the next few months.  They continue to move forward in their support raising efforts.  We look forward to having them join the team and helping EHE to reach towards more of the vision that God has placed within us as an organization.

If you are a family sponsor or partner with us, things won’t change much.  You will continue to receive your family updates and we’ll keep you in the loop with news from around the day care.  You also are still welcome to send photos and letters for your family.  That connection and the communication around it will continue at the same frequency as before.

Please pray for our family and for EHE in the midst of this transition.  We see God’s fingerprints all over it and are excited about all that it means to have even more of EHE in the hands of our great team led by Alayu.  Praise God for all that He is doing.

Thank you for joining us in this journey,

Jerry Shannon

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