More travels and more clarity about the next year
Hays Missions Update
Preparing to Provide Transformational Theological Education to Latin American Pastors and Theologians

United World Mission

Dear Friends and Family,

Last time I wrote you all I was still on the road in the US, presenting papers, visiting old friends, and continuing with fund-raising. The trip proved a wonderful experience, as our support team grew and we made new, strategic connections. I felt deeply ministered to by many old friends who encouraged and prayed for us. Each of them reminded me of how greatly God has enriched us in the many friends and mentors he had brought us over the years. This increases my delight and excitement about moving towards Latin America, ever-reinforcing our certainty of our calling.

I mentioned in my last email that I had applied for a couple of short term teaching contracts in the UK, since my current contract at Oxford ends in August 2013. I felt obliged to look into ways that we might be able to stay afloat financially if we are not ready to deploy by the time my current salary in Oxford ends. I did end up interviewing for these jobs, but (happily!) was not offered either of them. This actually comes as a real joy to us. The process of applying for the jobs was a hard one, since I would be sad to shorten my research fellowship here in Oxford, and since I was afraid that taking a teaching post would interfere with my ability to fund-raise. The ironic consequence of these unsuccessful applications is that I have a RENEWED sense of energy and confidence about fund-raising over the coming year; since God closed those doors, I feel undistracted by "contingency plans". I am excited to be able to continue full-steam ahead towards Latin America, without any further diversions (well, at least not at this point!).

Indeed, the month of July really will be "full-steam ahead", almost entirely dedicated to preparation for Latin America. I will be attending a once-a-decade conference of evangelical church leaders in Latin America (CLADE V) and then spending 10 days fund-raising in California. We'd be deeply grateful for your intercession (see below) in this coming month.

Before handing over to Michelle, I did want to say that one of my essays is available online here. I know that much of what I write is a bit technical and verbose, but this piece (entitled "Provision for the Poor and the Mission of the Church") is only seven pages long, and aims to be a bit more accessible, if any of you are interested in taking a gander at it!

Peace be with you all,

Christopher, Michelle, Judah and Asher Hays

From Michelle

I think the boys would agree hands down that the best part of June was going on a lovely holiday with Chris' parents last week. Judah and Asher both got to miss a week of school in order to have their grandparents spoil them and take us all to exciting places around the UK. We saw a beautiful castle on the sea in Wales and the boys loved climbing up the towers and exploring all of the passageways. In Dublin, we visited an interactive Viking museum and took a tour called the Viking Splash Tour (see hats above). Our tour guide instructed us on how we could raid the city of Dublin and use our Viking roars to disrupt passing 'Celts' (other tour buses and tourists). I'm sure you can easily imagine how much Judah and Asher loved the chance to wear these helmets, roar as loudly as they could and wave around wooden swords. For our last couple of days, we went to Edinburgh which is one of Chris' and my favorite cities in the UK. The boys saw the zoo and a science museum and Chris and I walked down to the neighborhood featured in Alexander McCall Smith's 44 Scotland Street series (fiction books I love that are set in Edinburgh). Chris and I got to have four nights in which his parents put our kids to bed and we went on walks together or got a coffee together. It was refreshing to be able to spend time together, especially since Chris was away some in June and will be gone a fair bit in July. My dad also happened to be passing through the London area on his way home from a business trip in Japan, so we also got to spend a day with him just after Chris' parents left. I feel very blessed to have had the chance to reconnect with some of our family and loved that the boys got to have so much grandparent love and attention showered on them.
Our other bit of news is that it looks like baby Hays is going to be a girl! I had my 20 week scan during the first week of June and the baby seems to be growing well and in good health. The boys are a bit disappointed because they were planning for a brother, but we are hoping that over the course of the next few months we can help the idea of having a sister to grow on them. Chris and I are thrilled at the idea of having some pink in the house:)   

Please Pray

  • For Christopher's time at CLADE V in Costa Rica. Please pray that the conference would teach Christopher a great deal about our future work in Latin America, and that God would create new relationships and networks to enhance our effectiveness there.
  • For God's leading and empowerment as Christopher preaches at a pair of Californian churches (once in English, once in Spanish).
  • For God to bring a new Californian church onto our missionary support team.
  • For successful fund-raising meetings in California. Specifically, we are having trouble scheduling our typical fund-raising desserts in central CA, so we'd be grateful if God would open doors and make connections there.
  • The boys and Michelle would love your prayers next month during the 17 days that Christopher will be in Costa Rica and California. Please pray for extra energy and patience for Michelle as she juggles the boys' activities and boundless energy on her own. 

Praise God

  • For a productive fund-raising trip in the Midwest.
  • For clear guidance regarding Christopher's job this coming year.
  • For the many people who ministered to Christopher during his time in America.

Contact Us

Phone: +44(1865)435 057
Skype: christopher.hays.oxford

Copyright © 2012 Christopher and Michelle Hays, United World Mission, All rights reserved.