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McClung News Journal
School's Out Again
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School's Out Again
Sept. '03
Sept. Part 2
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Leaving Suriname
FUN PAGE

Date: Mon, 16 Jun 2003

Hello!
                                    
                                    Well, this is our last email update for the 2002-2003 school year.  It 
                                    is amazing to me that this school year has already ended.  We are sad 
                                    to see it end so soon.  We've said a lot of 'Good byes' to many people 
                                    this past week, who sadly, are moving away from Suriname for good.
                                    
                                    Patricia and I were just discussing how we couldn't wait to board the 
                                    plane to fly back to the states last summer, but this year, we aren't in 
                                    a hurry to leave.  We really love it here:  the people, the school, the 
                                    scenery, but not so much the rain.  We are ready for drier weather, hot 
                                    water, and fast food.   We are excited to see family and friends and 
                                    share about our experiences of this past year.
                                    
                                    God has a lot in store for us in Suriname this coming fall.  We are 
                                    very anxious to see how God is going to move among our students during the 
                                    2003-2004 school year, so we look eagerly to our return.
                                    
                                    To update you since my last email (the Trinidad update), things have 
                                    really moved along swiftly here.  I spent a week of torment finishing up 
                                    our school yearbook.  I don't think I ever want to oversee the 
                                    production of a yearbook again.  I think I got a glimpse of what Hell is like.  
                                    Just kidding.  But the yearbook team and I, got the thing finished and 
                                    into the hands of all the eager students.  Everyone seemed happy with 
                                    the end result.
                                    
                                    Dr. Martens and his wife, Ruth, are now happily retired and are 
                                    traveling somewhere in Hong Kong.
                                    
                                    We now have 5 dogs keeping us busy.  We took on 2 additional dogs from 
                                    a missionary family that has sadly departed.  I will miss Jake and 
                                    Janie, probably as much as they will miss their dogs.
                                    
                                    I did the final chapel service of this school year.  God laid on my 
                                    heart to really challenge the students.  About 14 of them are leaving us 
                                    for good.  I shared with them my personal observations of 'Things I Have 
                                    Learned' in the past 17 years since graduating high school.  Some 
                                    observations were humorous, some were serious; but the main point of what I 
                                    have learned, is that God keeps His promises.  Every single last one of 
                                    them.  You probably can not open to a page in the New Testament and not 
                                    see a promise from God.
                                    I shared several promises that God has made that I have been able to 
                                    witness in my own life.  I gave them time to reflect on their own lives, 
                                    after laying out the plan of salvation for them.  I ask them to ponder 
                                    on what lay ahead for their future and how much of that is God 
                                    included?  I offered an invitation and we had one rededication. 
                                    
                                    I also gave my last sermon at our church about 2 weeks ago.  The church 
                                    has asked me to continue upon our return.  I feel blessed to be used in 
                                    this capacity.
                                    
                                    As far as security issues, we could not afford the security firm's 
                                    price, so we did not get an alarm system.  However, God seems to have 
                                    handled things for us.  The people on street where we live have hired 3 
                                    armed guards.  They patrol our street every night.  But the real kicker is, 
                                    the gang that has been doing all the robbing and terrorizing is no 
                                    longer in operation.  2 are dead (shot), 1 is paralyzed (shot), 2 are in 
                                    prison (surrendered), and one is running for his life.  Isn't it written 
                                    "you reap what you sow"?   So, Suriname is now the safest it's been for 
                                    the entire school year.
                                    
                                    Well, Doby knows that we are packing up.  He is excited.  He can't wait 
                                    to see his "Nana".  Just pray over our travel issues for us.  The 
                                    airline told us today that Doby was a pound overweight, but I trust God will 
                                    get us on that flight that leaves in just 10 hours from right now.  
                                    Most of you will probably read this Tuesday morning, hopefully while we 
                                    are in flight.  We are expected to land in Miami around 1 PM, then we are 
                                    renting a car and heading down to Key West.  After a few nights there, 
                                    we will be driving up to NC rather than flying.  Pray for safety and 
                                    that I remember to drive on the right side of the road.  We drive on the 
                                    left side down here.
                                    
                                    Look forward to seeing everyone in just a matter of days/weeks.  Drop 
                                    me an email, so we can arrange a time to visit you.
                                    
                                    In Christ's Name,
                                    
                                    John and Patricia
                                    

Sept. O3