One of the realities of living on a ministry center in a foreign country is that you say a lot of hellos and a lot of goodbyes. Iris Ministries has always had a heart to invite visitors to come and have their heart broken for the poor and our location in Zimpeto has several hundred visitors a year. So that's a lot of goodbyes if you spend any time with the visitors and make a connection.
But we also have "long-term" missionaries who come for a year or more. (I know that's not considered long-term in a lot of places!) They are the hardest to say goodbye to, people we have lived and worked with so closely in such an intense environment - we really become much of a family.
So farewells for our missionaries are especially poignant. We know that God is leading them on to something new but we will feel their loss keenly.
Liz and Betinho and their daughter, Lena-Joy (top, with Liz's parents, our Directors, Steve and Ros), Erin (middle) and Anna (below) have been such an important part of our team, as well as my friends, and they will be sorely missed!
I'm thankful to have known and worked along side of them and look forward to seeing what God unfolds for them in the future!