Update from Spain: Day Eight

Today our team said our final goodbye to Ponferrada and started the first leg of our journey back to the states. It was sad to leave friends that we’ve come to love so dearly, but we leave with a lot of gratefulness in our hearts to have spent time with them (and with the hope that we’ll return again soon:)).

In reflecting about the week of ministry, our team shared how grateful we were to have so many wonderful experiences that help shape our view of missions, evangelism, legalism, and more. What a blessing it was to both learn from and aid Jon and his team!

On our way to our hotel near the airport today, we stopped at a charming little restaurant and had a classic Spanish delicacie, a Roasted Suckling Pig. It was quite an experience to have it divided in front of us via our own plates, and to pick through ear and hooves and ribs for our [oh my goodness, oh so tender] meat. Though it was only roasted with water and salt, it tasted INCREDIBLE!


After lunch, we stuck around the city of Segovia, and checked out the cathedral, castle, and the aqueducts built by the Romans! It was pretty neat to see. While sight seeing, we continued having interesting dialogue and building our friendships with each other.


After a few more hours in the van, and dinner in Madrid, we’re now settled into our hotels and ready for a good night’s rest. We’ll attend church tomorrow and check out Madrid more thoroughly, and then Monday we come home! Trips go by so quickly!

Thank you so much for your prayers. We still need prayers for our team’s well-being in spirit and in health. Also pray for Jon and Lorena! If you’d like to continue praying for them and getting updates about their lives in Spain-sign up here


Soli Deo Gloria

For the Team,


Update from Spain: Day Six

When we woke up this morning, we didn’t know if we would have any energy left. I know for me, when my alarm went off, I wanted to break my iPhone. Ha.

After a shorter breakfast time, we had our morning devotion and orientation. Jeremy started us off with a devotion from John 18. He touched on two points: Christ’ humanity and God’s forgiveness. Christ, the God-man, empathized with our humanity. Peter betrayed him, yet he pursued Peter and forgave him.


Next, we (and our new good friend Tere) went to the rehab center to spend the day with Jon’s friends there. In the morning, we were split up in small groups. Each group was assigned to one of the guys. Our goal was to serve them. We cleaned windows, floors, rooms, and flower beds. We also fed the animals. Well, that was just Nate. Lucky.

Around 2pm, we had lunch as one big group. This time, the guys put on a traditional Spanish cookout! The food was delicious. We sat around a table and had a great time of fun and relaxation. In fact, Kiersten and I harmonized to a Maroon 5 song. Fun fact: Spaniards play American popular music on their radio stations. We went on a 2-hour hike. It was hot and challenging, but it gave an opportunity to connect with the guys on a personal level.

Later on in the afternoon (because 7pm is still afternoon in Spain), we had back-to-back English hours with two different groups. First, we reunited with Rachel and her academy students near a local park. Instead of playing soccer, we played an information game. Topics such as stereotypes and embarrassing moments brought smiles to our faces. Second, we met up with Seth at a local bar to help some Spaniards practice speaking English. They did a wonderful job. It’s been great to continue developing and deepening our friendships with the Spaniards we’ve met!

We ate dinner at Seth & Crystal’s apartment and finished the day with a testimony, and our reflections on chapter 5 of the book we are reading together as a team. This was our longest day on the trip. Yet, we are already seeing the fruits of our labor. Jon and Lorena have been encouraged by our team. They even affirmed us by letting us know that we have done exactly was he was hoping for us to do. That is SUCH a blessing for us! Thank YOU for your support in making this happen, in aiding these missionaries in the work God has called them too.

Here are prayer requests from our team:

  • Physical and mental strength
    • Hydration (AQUA!)
  • Connect more with the teens/students
  • Lorena’s health and baby (Praise, she’s fine)
  • Jon, Lorena, Seth, and Crystal’s need for friends’ and supporters’ encouragement and care

For the Team,


Update from Spain: Day Five

This morning started early. Very early. Those of us crazy enough to wake, met up with 5 Spaniards for a 2 mile hike up a mountain. One of Jon’s main mantras is “relationships are best built over doing“-and that certainly was the case this morning! There were great conversations had the entire way. Some of the young people we hung out with last night, invited a new friend, and he was especially open and talkative to Jon-which was super fun :). It was a very steep hill, and my legs are feeling it, but it was a great way to start the day. We rewarded ourselves by stopping in town for a cup of coffee and some complimentary treats. A beautiful, exhausting, and delicious way to start the day.

We went with some of our new Spanish friends and toured the city’s castle turned museum, and then we went to market and practiced using our Spanish by buying ingredients for our upcoming meal. We had lunch at Jon and Lorena’s teammates’ home and enjoyed some fellowship and rest.

IMG_0600The The last part of the day was my FAVORITE part of the day. There is a spunky woman from London who moved to Spain about 10 years ago, who runs an English Academy in Ponferrada. She organized a time for a handful of her students to meet with our team to practice English. She decided on a conversation topic for us to have together. And guess what it was? Religion. A topic that we just so happen to be very passionate about :). It was a trying and insightful experience to try and explain our thoughts in Spanish, and very interesting to hear their thoughts in English. The atheist and agnostic 17/18 year olds did a great job of explaining what they believe about the universe, about science, about religion, and about the Bible. Both sides asked great questions and were mutually respectful. We LOVE these kind of conversations-seeds planted. We look forward to spending more time with these Spaniards and getting to know them more the next few days! We hope too, that Jon can continue getting to know them and both ask and answer hard questions.

Oh did I mention we all tried octopus today? Well, we did! The texture was kind of unpleasant, but the taste was not bad!


Oh-one more awesome thing! Remember how we had another leader of the trip, but because of unforeseen circumstances, he wasn’t able to come? Well, today he became a grandfather for the first time, and because he wasn’t on the trip-he was able to be with his family-which was a huge blessing. God works in mysterious ways 🙂

Please pray for each of our team members. Spiritually, emotionally, mentally, physically. There are various burdens and levels of tiredness within each of us, and to best continue loving people like Jesus loved them-prayer would be very helpful. I encourage you to send a prayer, a verse, or an encouraging message to the team member you are supporting to continue investing in them. I think they would really appreciate that!

Gracias! 🙂

For the Team,


Update from Spain: Day Four

Wow! I think today was one of my favorite days of the trips so far.  We were able to meet and interact with a lot of wonderful spaniards today, in a lot of different ways.

Jon is volunteering at an addictions rehab center, and we went first to hear about the establishment and the (amazing!) work that it is doing in the community with addicts of all kinds. Unfortunately, from our perspective, it is not the best it can be, because they don’t incorporate faith in Jesus at all into their teaching. Good thing God has given Jon an open door there!

After the low-down, we spent the afternoon hanging out with the people of the rehab center. We made and ate lunch, played futbal and frisbee, and took a walk/hike/run of about 4 kilometers.  Later that night we went out with 2 other Spanish adults, and 3 Spanish teenagers to different “bars” and ordered nonalcoholic drinks and were served [FREE] appetizers. This is a very common evening activity to do in Spain, and after doing it and having such a blast, we can see why. The appetizer things (tapas) served to us were all sorts of foods-some of which we’ve had before (calamari, bread, mussels) and others which we had never had (pig ears (see below), and a bunch that I don’t know what they were called :))


The conversations today, despite some language barriers, were highlights for sure! We’ve found that the Spaniards we have been able to talk to, are very open about their faith (or more correctly, about their unbelief) and are very willing to kindly listen about our passion-the God of the Bible.

I could type SO much more about today-but it’s late, and I am eager to sleep. Also, we are waking up very early tomorrow for a nice 3 hour hike up a mountain :). I am sorry if this is a bit disheveled; I blame the late hour!

Please continue to pray for good health, and encouragement to our team and to the missionaries we came here to support. Also pray for good conversations and relationships to grow for the Tempeltons and our team.

Update from Spain: Day 2

Update From España: Dia Dos

This morning, we enjoyed Sunday morning worship.

After breakfast, Jon drove us to Seth’s home, his co-leader, and we had church house-church style. First, Seth lead worship and Jon gave the sermon to their kids, similar to Sunday school. Then, they lead a discussion-based teaching on Luke 10 (Lucas 10) and ended with corporate worship in English and Spanish.


By the early afternoon, the team ate lunch. We shared laughs and witty remarks. Crystal, Seth’s wife, blessed us with a filling meal. After lunch, we had a sweet desert called Flan. The team put their hands behind their backs and ate this pastry with our mouths only. It was a sight to see. In fact, I will put a short video clip up on my next blog post, featuring Jeremy Mueller.

After hanging with Seth and Crystal, we drove to Molinaseca, a quaint, charming town. A local friend of Jon and Lorena, Tere, went along with us to practice her english. We walked around the area as a group. Jon shared historical facts and culture perks. The town looks like something you would see in a Disney movie. It has a modern, European look. Nate and I would fan-girl over the narrow streets and old-fashion buildings. We visited a few local shops and took some group photos.


In Molinaseca, we also visited two Catholic churches, a popular bridge, and a bed and breakfast called “Casa San Nicolas” (House of St. Nicholas). Jon explained that the Catholic church is starting to lose its touch even though it retains a lot of its influential political power. At one of the bridges, we learned about a unique tradition: the natives would block off the river and let it flood so that the kids could play in the water.

The bed and breakfast is the event that brought the most joy. We had coffee and cake with a lovely couple that are good friends with the Tempelton’s. Also, we met another guy, Josue, who was fluent in three languages: French, Spanish, and Portuguese. He told us a short story about the word “Obrigado.” In the 15th century, Portugal and Japan would trade together. When the Portuguese would end a deal or leave Japan, he or she would say it. It is similar to saying thank you, except it actually means “I owe you one” (or “I am obligated to serve you again”). The Japanese adopted the word as their own. It has the same spelling but it is said differently by both countries.

We are having a blast across the Atlantic. Continue to pray for the following:

  • Jetlag recovery (especially for Chris Crosdale :))
  • Lorena, Jon’s wife
  • Opportunities to building relationships with Spaniards
  • God’s strength and guidance




Chris from the Team