Friday, October 30, 2009

In Memory of Staci Cadarian

The sister of one of my best friends went home to be with the Lord this week.  My life was definitely enriched for having known Staci.  Please pray for the family as they adjust to life without her.

Here is the obituary from the paper: 

Staci Cadarian. Born November 26, 1972, went to be with the Lord, Monday, October 26, 2009. With many broken hearts left behind. Staci was a beautiful person despite her many handicaps and disabilities. She spent the first six months of her life in the hospital due to complications from Spinabifida and Hydra-cephalis. She would end up there many times in her life but it would not stop her from spreading joy even in the lives of the Hospital Staff. Our beautiful baby had a great love for everyone she knew, and never met a stranger.

She has left behind a family who is rejoicing that she is in the hands of God but aching at the loss of her amazing life. She is survived by her family. Her parents: John and Barbara Cadarian; a sister Tami McKendrick and her husband Dan and daughter Tori. Three brothers, Brian Cadarian, Mike Cadarian and Jeff Cadarian, his wife Julie and three children, Jordan, Justin and Janelle. She is also survived by a paternal grandmother Lil and many other aunts, uncles, cousins and special friends Faye and Clarence Riddle who will miss her dearly. She was preceded in death by a cousin, Darrell Gregory, a paternal grandfather, John Cadarian and a maternal grandmother, Essie Turnmire, who we are certain, met her at Heaven's Gate rejoicing with her and her new glorious body.

She was our baby, our buddy, our playmate, our toy and the love of our lives. She has left us all with a great sadness and emptiness in our hearts. After a life expectancy of three years we are grateful for the almost 37 we were able to spend with her. It proves that only God is in control. We are overjoyed at the peacefulness of her passing and seeing her again in Glory. We will miss her greatly until we all meet her again. Heaven will never welcome a sweeter Angel and we will always love her.

The pallbearers will be brothers, Jeff Cadarian, Mike Cadarian, Brian Cadarian and Dan McKendrick; and nephews, Jordan Cadarian and Justin Cadarian. Visitation Wednesday from 6-9 p.m. and Thursday from 1-9 p.m. at the Bagnasco & Calcaterra Funeral Home, 13650 E. Fifteen Mile Road (at Schoenherr), Sterling Heights. Funeral service Friday at 12 p.m. at funeral home. Interment, Christian Memorial Cultural Center, Rochester Hills, Mich. Share memories at www.bcfh

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Following in Grandpa's Footsteps

Although I never met him, I grew up hearing about my Grandpa Kelly!  My memories are of a man who was a Navy lifer who died from a massive stroke just day before his retirement.  I have copies of old pictures of my grandpa in his uniform with his family - my grandma, dad and aunt. 

My oldest nephew, Travis, is following in Grandpa's footsteps.  And we are so very, very proud of him!  This afternoon my sister said goodbye to her oldest son and sent him off to boot camp with nothing but the clothes on his back and his wallet.  Please be in prayer for Travis while he adjusts to his new life.  Pray for my sister, Brenda, as she adjusts to life without Travis. 

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


That's pretty much what our little van did yesterday.  Scott turned the van over only to hear a lot of metal cracking and clanking when we attempted to take the kids to an orthodontist appointment   Not good! 

Because the van is a diesel and Scott's not a diesel mechanic we had to have it hauled away yesterday afternoon.  But we just learned today of  rods that are bent and cracked, a blown head gasket blown and water in the oil.  Not good!

The mechanic thinks it will take about 3 weeks.  I hope he really means 3 weeks literal time and not, well, I'll just leave it at that.  Because as you can see by looking at that fancy little countdown timer above this post that cuts awfully close to our return home.  Not good!

So a quote I have just shared with friends today comes to front and center right now, "The difference between  stumbling blocks and stepping stones is the way one uses them."  I guess I'm going to have to lift my foot a litter higher over this block to make it a stone.  Good!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Run-Off Election Scheduled

Our first time to experience elections in Uruguay really wasn't too remarkable.  That's not to say that the time leading up to the elections was not alarming and eye opening.  With the exception that every of-age-Uruguayan must vote, election day in Uruguay passed much like it would in the States.

I'm still trying hard to understand the intricacies of the voting system here in Uruguay but I think I've got the gist.  Election is by popular vote.  Whichever candidate gets more than 50% + 1 of the vote, wins the election.  Simple in that respect.  If there is no one who gains the majority there will be a run off vote scheduled for a month later. 

That is the case this year.  And after seeing how close the vote was we are much relieved! 

It appeared that the Broad Front party, aka, communist party, would win the election.  In securing 47.49% of the vote they came very close.  The two conservative parties, whose vote combined totaled 45. 19%, will join their votes together to try to garner the majority, 50% + 1.  They have already announced which of their candidates will be on the next ballot. 

The Lord has offered us another month of prayer for the elections and we ask you to join us.  There are serious potential consequences to missions here in Uruguay if the Broad Front party were to win.  Their candidate is of the same mind and highly influenced by, H.C., the dictator in the northern country of South America.  I'm sure I don't need to elaborate further.

If you would like to read more about the elections I invite you to visit the Uruguayan newspaper  online at 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

¡¡¡CORRE!!! ¡¡¡CORRE!!!

Yesterday was a surprisingly hot day for October.  It was truly a welcome break from the cold, but with that kind of heat there is always a storm.  And last night was no exception.  We headed to last night's baby shower with clouds on the horizon and a hint of rain in the air.  By the time I headed out to take the ladies in the El General Barrio home the temperature had dropped significantly. 

With the wind blowing hard and lightning flashing in the sky I was wondering if I would get all the ladies home before the full brunt of the storm hit.  In the midst of my "day dreaming" I forgot about a burro (speed bump) and, well, lets just say I'm glad it wasn't one of the big ones.  It was sufficient though to give everyone on board a thrill ride. 

After "safely" dropping off the last lady I headed back to the church to get the rest of the ladies from the El Real Barrio.  By that point the heavens had let loose of all the water and I was having to drive home in conditions I really don't like - rain, speed bumps and an overloaded van. 

I don't normally drive so I never remember well where everyone lives, that said, I can confess the rest of the story.  I thought dropping off the first lady would be fairly simple.  Except we usually pick her up on a different road but because of the rain I was taking her to her house and she is hard of hearing.  When I got to the place I thought was hers one of the ladies asked her if this was where she needed to be dropped off.  Answering in the affirmative and exiting the van she began to run ahead of me, about a block, to her the pouring and pelting rain.  Talk about my bad! 

On the way to the next house the ladies in the van decided to sing Showers of Blessings.  Once all the ladies found their parts it was some of the most beautiful singing I've ever heard.  I think we need to form a van choral. :-)  We can drive around the neighborhoods singing to the Lord! 

The next lady was a near ditto of the last but I actually went where she told me to go.  However, she screamed as she got out of the van and then stood there.  So all the ladies were yelling at her over the storm to RUN!!!  Which she did.  The only problem...she ran off in a direction not anywhere near her house.  I have to admit it was one of the funniest things I've ever seen.  Based on the riotous laughter in the van, I think all the ladies would agree.

After that at each house we stopped at the rest of the ladies were telling the next to RUN HOME!!!  And at one corner I dropped off two ladies who both ran in opposite directions.  It just added to the hilarity of the night, even though they were running towards home.  I wonder if this will become a running joke for us!  HAHA.  

I really, really needed some genuine humor last night.  I've have so many trials in my life lately that have left me seeing clearly what little faith I have, which in turn, leaves me feeling hopeless and very discouraged.  The woman who has challenged the faltering faith in others with the question, "Who is your God?,"  is left shaking her head in dismay when she asks herself the very same question.

As I ponder some of the happenings of last night I realize a few things.
  1. How many times have I run off like the first lady, into the midst of the storm, by myself, because I didn't want to inconvenience others.  Or because I didn't want to upset, disappoint, or offend anyone by telling them I wasn't in the right place.  Or because I didn't trust the one who was offering to help me.   
  2. How many times have I placed myself in more danger because of my pride, or fear of rejection?  I am, after all, a missionary, a pastors wife.  Is there really an allowance for me to be a human being who hurts and struggles and bleeds red blood just like you?
  3. Have I tried to help God out by telling Him where I want to go instead of allowing Him to take me where I need to be and I'm left running off screaming into the storm?   With no protection and looking like a crazy woman, while others are wondering what in the world that was all about.
  4. How many times have I judged another going through a torment in their lives?  
  5. How many times have I been a cause of their torment and my refusal to see my responsibility (SIN) has caused them to question Who God is and ultimately led them to despair?
  6. Am I running to God in my storm...or away from Him thinking I can find help in my own power?

Now I wonder, have I said too much? 

What repercussions may this blog post have? 

Will this result in more hurt from gossiping tongues? 

Or will the results be positive? 

Will it help you all to pray better for me?   Oh, I surely hope so!!! 

No doubt many of you already know me well enough to know that I'm a horribly stubborn selfish imperfect perfectionist...if not, just ask my family!  Even so I'm a Christian woman who longs to have Christ glorified in and through me all the while knowing I'm falling very short of that mark.  And I can't seem to see the target through the pain and confusion.  I feel much like Paul, that would I do I do not.  (Romans 7:15-21) 

So now I end this VERY long post with a request that you would please pray that God would help me through my unbelief.  (Mark 9:24) That he would help me to quit running like a crazy woman through the storm and instead to take His hand and place myself beneath the protective shelter of His wings. 

"For thou hast been a shelter for me, and a strong tower from the enemy.  I will abide in thy tabernacle for ever: I will trust in the covert of thy wings."  Psalm 61:3,4

Welcome Zacarias

Last night we celebrated another new baby in the church...Zacarías Aarón Chauvie. 

Because we have so much going on in our lives right now with ministry responsibilities here, furlough preparations, home schooling, and life in general, I thought it a perfect opportunity to teach another woman how to do the work of the ministry.

Elida was gracious enough to take on the responsibility of organizing the shower.  And she did a fabulous job!!!  Using the checklist I provided to her she took care of everything.  My role was solely advisory.

Rebekah's mom, Celeste, brought us a devotional from Isaiah.  This was her second time to bring us a baby shower devotional as she was the special speaker for the baby shower shared among Rebekah, Elida and I almost 2 years ago.

 I failed to ask who made the cake, but isn't it adorable?!  Perfect for the Noah's Ark theme of the shower.

Isn't the background adorable (better seen in the other pics)?  If I understood correctly it was made by Zacarias' aunts.  I'm not sure who all had a part in making it but they sure did a great job!

This was a memory game and Alejandra and Leticia (the the left and right of Amparo) were the winners. 

The other game was reserved for the new mom.  After being blind-folded, to represent those wonderful middle of the night adventures, she was spun around then given a pacifier, bib and diaper to put on her "baby".  Not bad, huh?! 

Both Grandmothers were able to help open all the gifts for baby Zacarias.  This is the gift I gave to Rebekah and Gabriel.  Our Pastors wife in NC makes a hooded towel for all the babies.  And so I wanted to have something I could do like that.  So I make a frame-able scrapbook page of each of the babies.  Since his big brother Esteban has one too I swapped colors the colors and, obviously, the picture.

Maria Eugenia and Elida singing a special "Un Buen Hogar." (I think that's the title.)

Sunday, October 18, 2009

New Names Written Down

Yesterday was a beautiful day to have an evangelistic children's meeting. Sebastian had planned and prepared for the day and had asked for the teens to be the helpers. God brought 48 children to the park to play, sing and hear a devotional focused on the Cross.
Three children, including Nilsan (above in center), asked Christ to be their Savior! Another was our 6 year old daughter, Isabel! Kaitlin brought her to me and told me she had raised her hand in the invitation. I'm really so honored to have the blessing of leading people to the Lord. To have another of our children trust in Christ alone for salvation is thrilling beyond measure!
Today in Sunday School Isabel threw her hand up into the air when the general question was asked about who had been saved yesterday. And Nilsan also declared she was saved too. Praise the Lord for this first step for both.

Thank you for praying for our children, our family and our ministry here in Uruguay! God is answering your prayers! And ours!

During our missions conference in November we will have a youth evangelistic meeting...COLA WARS. Please be praying now for many young people to be there and for God to be at work in their hearts now, preparing them to be receptive to the Gospel.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

How NOT to Behave

Throughout our years as parents we have worked very hard to train our children to have table manners. Really there is nothing harder then to try and enjoy a meal out when you have unruly kids. Throughout our time in Bible college we were sure to take our kids out to eat in restaurants to familiarize them with the to speak. Since we had basically 3 years of meals out during deputation this training paid off.

Today we realized there is a need for a refresher course in table etiquette.

It all began with Simeon slurping and gulping his drink. At the same time Isabel nibbled off all the skin of her hot dog and proceeded to totally gross us out by the way she ate it.

Then Nehemiah decided to stick Palitos (little bread stick type "chips") against his nostrils and inhale so they looked like the bone that goes through the nose of natives. Which sent the little peeps into a frenzy of sticking palitos up their noses and in their ears.

Isabel was the first one to stick a palito in her nose and when we asked if she was going to eat it she said, "No!" and promptly stuck it in her mouth. She was laughing so hard at our disgust that she let out a gasious explosion. That got all of us roaring.

With our furlough coming up, I'll be making sure the kids use their table manners. Though I have this sinking feeling that I'll probably have nightmares about today's scene at lunch set in a Pastor's house or at a restaurant.

Brethren, pray for us!!! :-)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Futbol Uruguayo

A funny thing happens to missionaries the longer they live in their adopted countries, they begin to fall in love with all things, in our case, Uruguayan! Yes, that even includes soccer.

Uruguay will play Argentina in a very important game tonight. This is a historic game, after (yes, I am thinking positively) Uruguay beats Argentina and sends them home, Uruguay will advance to the World Cup finals and Argentina will be out entirely.

Uruguayans are so excited about this game that the stadium sold 25, 000 tickets in 4 hours. It is expected that the Estadio Centenario will be completely packed. With only 3,000 tickets being sold to Argentines there is no doubt Uruguay has the home field advantage.

We join Uruguayans in cheering........... VAMOS CELESTEEEEE!!!!!!!!!!

Oh, we heard that the US plays against Costa Rica today as well so not to be outdone we say GO USA!!!! VAMOS LOS ESTADOS!!!!

Thursday, October 08, 2009


The last Sunday morning of October is election day here in Uruguay. As election day approaches each party shows their presence in cities throughout the country through political rallies. It is not uncommon to see people walking with flags representing their preferred party. Party banners blanket yards, cover trees and stretch over city streets. Empty houses, or shops are rented and painted to be used for party headquarters. (NOTE: I do not endorse, nor represent, any party mentioned or pictured in this blog.)

Caravans are another very visual and vocal way of gathering support and gaining the vote. More than once we have seen cars, with vans and buses interspersed, in long lines on the side of the road the aforementioned flags hanging out the windows. One time I realized, almost too late, that I was going to get caught up in one of these caravans and was able to find a side street to turn off avoiding any association.

The location of the church here, on the main road of the El General barrio, lends itself to a lot of noise at times. It's not uncommon to hear horns honking during church services typically it is a celebration of the latest favored futbol team's win. Usually the caravan is fairly short and not too much of a disturbance to the services.

Last night was a different story all together.

Brandon and I both help in Kings Kids on Wednesday nights. We had just finished with game time outside and the kids were getting settled in for the lesson time when we heard a lot of honking. Curiosity got the best of me, and Brandon. Since the same thing had happened during youth meeting this past Saturday we decided to take a look and see what was being celebrated.
What our eyes met was shocking and alarming!

There before us, mere yards away, flying high from the back of a flat bed truck was a gigantic communist flag. Other flags representing Che Guevara, the Frente Amplio party, and their presidential candidate Jose Mujica; all were nearly as big as the communist flag which clearly took center stage. I have never before seen a communist flag in person.

Chills ran down my spine as I stood there in stunned silence. I fought back the tears as I realized that for most of the people packed into those caravan vehicles humanism had become their god. Having their physical needs met is more important than having their spiritual needs met. And while seeking Utopia on earth they forfeit an eternity of residing in Heaven with the Lord.

That 4.7 km long caravan was a visual representation of souls here in Colonia who likely are completely closed off to the Gospel. I was alarmed as I recalled the whispered words that if this candidate wins we may likely see the end of missions here in Uruguay. I wondered if the churches here are strong enough, independent enough, and indigenous enough to survive without the missionaries? And what of the persecution that could very possibly follow?

As the last vehicle in the caravan passed, complete with all the aforementioned flags, I couldn't help but to imagine this same scene playing out in front of our sending church...on the streets of America. I felt compelled to tell Brandon to burn an image of what he was seeing into his mind and remind him that his voice, our voice, is important!

Writing this blog and thinking back upon last night I am reminded by God that the Gospel makes a difference! Jesus Christ saves! And HE is the hope we share with Uruguayans! May we be diligent and faithful to share the Gospel today, for we may not have tomorrow. James 4:14.