Monday, October 22, 2007

Bit of an Update

Dear friends & family,

Well after having a few posts of mostly pictures it is time to fill you in a bit on life here in the Montifiore Manse.

As I write I am waving to my lovely wife as she waters the bushes in front of my window in todays last rays of the October Spring sunshine. The rose bushes are coming along. The lemon tree almost died due to a few late frosts, but with the quick work of my friend Pat Connors, some chicken poop, sea weed, and mulch, the lemon tree is making a recovery. Plus we now have a genuine vegie patch with carrots, tomatoes, sweet corn (yum!), potatoes, broccoli, and a couple different types of beans.

Our living room is almost complete. Some firends here have given us some beautiful and wonderfully comfortiable furniture. We recently picked up a couple lamps, coffee table, and end tables, all at very reasonable prices.

We have also been noticing that spiders have been attempting to invade the manse. Inside we have only found some little spiders and Daddy Long Legs, but in our garden shed I found a Red Back. A Red Back spider is very poisonopus and can even be deadly, but deaths are not common, and every hospital in Australia has antidotes to Red Back bites. No sightings of the large, and not aggressive or dangerous, Huntsmen Spider though.

Martha and I have been entertaining a bit of late as well. Hopefully we will be able to do more of it! We have had a few people over for meals, a cup of coffee, and some friends just drop by. It is a tremendous privledge and blessing to share our new home and all the marvelous things the Lord has given as we seek to get to know and serve the people here.

This past Sabbath's morning was an especially special and blessed time. We had 5 people become members of the church, Baptism, and the Lord's Supper. The message was from Mark 1:16-20 on the effectual calling of Christ, dropping our old lives, and following Him. The marvelous work of Christ in calling His people ran like a thread through the whole service.

Well I should continue on.

The Lord's blessings be upon you.

Love through Christ,

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Tasmanian Wedding Re-celebration Pics !

On September 8th both churches in the SPC (Launceston and Hobart) threw a wedding re-celebration party for Martha and me. The re-celebration was a kind of second wedding reception.

The reception was held in the Tasmanian midlands at the town of Ross. Ross is an old town that is home to the oldest convict bridge in Australia. The bridge has several portraits carved in its stone and the Ross museum claims one of the portraits is of "the Protestant Philosopher" John Calvin. Ross is also a bit of a touristy town with an old church, some preserved homes, and the former "Female Factory" or women's prison.

The re-celebration was held in the Ross town hall.

We had a truly blessed time of friendship and fellowship that truly made us feel at home and part of the family.

Here we are outside the town hall. It was a little chilly so I loaned Martha my suit coat.

Here we are outside an old church in Ross, which sadly, is really just a relic for tourists.

The inside of the church is beautiful and especially so with my bride in it!

From the church we entered the hall to a large reception of friends and church family. Then we sat down together and all watched a DVD recording of our wedding ceremony projected up on a screen in the town hall.

Pat Connors, an elder from the Launceston congregation, was the MC for the re-celebration. The Lord has given him a mind, personality, sense of humor, and amazingly good looks necessary for the task.

My counter part in Hobart Pastor Iain Smith gave a devotional message to us from the Word. He was only given about 3 minutes notice by the MC, in true Tasmanian fashion.

The Lorraine Ten Haaf, a friend and member of the Laqunceston congregation, read apoem for us she wrote for the special occasion.

There was plenty of wonderful tucker (Oz for food)

During the meal they projected all selection of wedding and reception pictures on the screen.

The wedding cake was a traditional Australian Fruit Cake. I had fun opting for an alternate way of cutting the cake.

But we settled on the traditional approach.

Cup of tea with cake

After cake it was present time. One of the many lovely gifts was a painting given to us by the whole Hobart congregation. The painting is of our home "the Montifiore Manse" and it was done by a well recognized artist, and member of the Hobart congregation, Mollie Tomlin.

There was a whole table full of gifts and cards.

As we were about to leave confetti was tossed.

We found our car had been decorated while we were opening gifts.

Pulling out and rattling as we go.

Notice the little dog chasing us. He followed us almost all the way out of Ross. He was amazingly cute.

The dog is still following.

And he is still following.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Some Long Awaited WEDDING PICTURES !!!!

Here are some pictures from our wedding. They roughly flow through the ceremony and end with a couple pictures from the reception. Lord willing, next week we'll be able to put up some pictures of the wedding re-celebration the SPC congregations had for us here in Tassie.

Rev. Ray Lanning, myself, and my groomsmen entered from a door on the far right (off picture). The groomsmen are (left to right & bottom to top) Randy Pederson, Bert Pohl, Todd Munson, and Aaron Rozeboom.

The bridesmaids entered after the grandparents and parents were seated. The first of the amazingly beautiful bridesmaids was Martha's older sister Joanna.

The second amazingly beautiful bridesmaid was Martha's younger sister Lydia.

The third amazingly beautiful bridesmaid was Martha's other younger sister Esther.

The last, but certainly not least, amazingly beautiful bridesmaid was Martha's youngest sister Elisabeth.

Martha's older brothers Daniel and Peter unroll the runner.

Martha's youngest brother Nathanael (otherwise known as "Buddy") and cousin Lanae were the ring bearer and flower girl.

The ring bearer and the flower girl walking down the isle.

My wonderful bride and her father preparing to walk down the aisle.

Presenting the bride.

Me gladly accepting the bride!

Listening with the audience as Rev. Lanning explains why we are here today and its significance.

Rev. Lanning bringing the Word of God.

Martha's father Rev. David Lipsy performing the ceremony.

Exchanging the rings

Our mothers lighting the candles that symbolize my and Martha's lives. My mother is on the right and Martha's mother is on the left.

Martha and I lighting the "unity candle" symbolizing the joining of our lives together.

Rev. Lipsy pronouncing the blessing

Lifting the veil

Our first kiss, literally

Walking back down the aisle as husband & wife !!

The Lipsy family with Martha and me

Martha and I with my mother, sister, and step-father. Sadly, my father could not get time off for the wedding, but he was in our thoughts and hearts.

The bridal party

Bride, bridesmaids, and flower girl

Groom, groomsmen, and ring bearer

Martha and I with her mom and dad (on the left) and my mom and step-dad (on the right)

Martha and I with Rev. and Mrs. Lanning (Ray & Linda)

Just cute !

Enjoying the reception

Cutting the cake