May 22, 2020. It was a day I've had marked on my calendar since the beginning of May 2019. Although it seems much more like Groundhog Day it is actually Memorial Day weekend. Our town normally has a pretty festive lineup. Thursday night many from Penn Hills go to the docks at the Gateway Clipper to gawk at Prom. It's a wondrous celebration of young ladies awkwardly stumbling in heels that are too high while trying to keep their formal dresses from falling down, and young men outdoing each other with dapperness. Then Friday is Kennywood Day, where many think gang activity is so rampant they stay home, leaving the park fairly empty for us. Then there's a big parade on Monday with firetrucks, bands, dance troupes and other floats.
However, last year, on Kennywood Day, we told the kids that it would be our last. You see, today was supposed to be my MDiv graduation ceremony. I skipped my undergrad one, because I really didn't do anything to deserve it, but I was really looking forward to this one. Not because I worked so hard over the last 4.5 years, but more because Carrie had.
Twice a year, I got to visit campus and hang with my classmates, while (most of) our wives stayed home with the kids. We knew we had it good. It was easy. Two weeks a year, where you only had to fend for yourself, and the biggest problem was, "where am I eating out for dinner?" We spoke of it the last time we were together. We were really looking forward to commencement, so our wives could be celebrated a little. They've sacrificed so much, that they deserve to get together to tell war stories. But it doesn't get to happen this year.
That being said, we are plowing ahead with our Great Abaco move. We are collecting boxes, and making plans for the summer. It looks like our month at MTI is still happening, and after that...who knows. We are planning for the kids and I to go to Washington State for a week to visit my brother and his family before MTI, but come the end of August, if travel restrictions are lifted, we could be off. Our support has reached 80% of our annual need. We have a great deal of momentum, but are still in need of that last 20%. If you know of anyone who is looking for a mission partner, we'd love to meet with them.