11 August, 2009

Why are you going to Manilla?

Earlier in the year I looked ahead to what our next few years would be like. Not one to enjoy housework in my spare time, I wondered what good use I could make of my time once all my children were at school.

 I'd been developing an interest in writing and have long had an interest in design. An article of mine was published in Japan Harvest earlier this year. Japan Harvest is a magazine published by the Japan Evangelical Missionary Association (JEMA). It is an organisation comprising of and serving the 2000 or so Evangelical missionaries serving in Japan. The magazine is written by and for those reaching Japanese for Christ. The editor of the magazine asked me last year if I'd be interested in being more involved in JEMA publications in the future.

So, as I thought about the future early this year, I contacted him and asked about how they could use my skills. We had an interesting and lengthy conversation! My easiest job interview ever. Exactly what I'll end up doing is not clear, but certainly something in the editorial line of things.

 Not long after that he told me of Magazine Training International and the training events they hold around the world. Particularly, of the editing and writing conferences they are holding in Manilla this September and October. The conferences are heavily subsidised and therefore affordable for Christian Magazines. The biggest costs are airfares. Our mission supervisors encouraged me to go, so it was sounding exciting.

 This is such a difficult story to tell succinctly! Are you following me? I put it all off, somewhat distracted by our moving (!!!) and last month, after a lot of thinking and praying I was on the verge of applying to go to the editing part of the conference (leaving my husband to look after our boys for two weeks was a bit too mean). At that point my biggest concern was travelling on my own. Contrary to most people's impression of missionaries, we aren't necessarily very familiar with world travel. Going to another country where I don't speak the language is not high on my "enjoyment" list. Perhaps living in a non-English speaking country has taken the excitement out of such adventures.

Anyway, I happened upon an Australian Christian magazine editor who was keen to go to the conference and because she lives in Brisbane was free to travel with me. So, after all that we booked our tickets (amidst significant internet frustrations) and are headed to Manilla on the 28th of September. Can you see how I find this a difficult question to answer on the fly? People ask me about why I'm going to Manilla and it is very hard to explain quickly. I'm planning to write something like this in our next prayer/newsletter and hopefully that will go a long way towards answering people's questions.


Hippomanic Jen said...

Glad to hear you get to go. What's hubby going to do with the kids while you're gone? he, he, he.

Barbara said...

That sounds exciting :) I hope it will be of some use to you!

Wendy said...

Well, he's hoping his mum will come down to stay! Besides that, I'm sure he'll manage. He's done it before. I married a great guy.

Tim and Susan said...

Sounds like a great opportunity. Great you found a traveling partner too.

Janet said...

I can't wait Wendy - we're going to have an awesome time together!!!