Here's our regular Q Family News -- a quick rundown on us and our family. Our PICTURES are on our PHOTO site, where you can find Albums of family and ministry, and you don't even have to log in! Click here and Enjoy!-->

We're packing up for our move to Kyiv! It is so hard to say our goodbyes to our beloved friends in Odessa. Even though we know we'll come back to visit, it won't be the same.

Packing our things, and throwing away and giving things away, brings a new perspective. It's really happening! But we need prayer in order to find shippers and storage, since we hope to ship our stuff in just one week, but we'll only be moving to Kyiv in May!

Our son Matt and his wife Erin were able to get away for Spring Break during March, and spent that week with us in Odessa. It had been 6 years since they visited Ukraine! We had a party for them on their first day, inviting old friends and new. Music ranged from songs they had written and blues, to accordion tunes from old Russian movies. The rest of the time was spent wandering the streets, visiting old haunts to see what had changed, and enjoying the local cuisine together. Matt said he wanted to make it the Odessa Gastronomic Tour -- from home cooking to snacks to haute cuisine to "street food". The week was brief, but it was a blessed time, and we thank God for giving us joys like this along the way, including the joys of our beloved family.

The European Leaders Forum of MTW was held in L’viv this week in western Ukraine, with leaders coming to represent teams in Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Lithuania, Greece, England, etc., as well as teams in Ukraine: Odessa, Kherson, L'viv and Kyiv. Others flew into the new airport built for the European Soccer Finals in June, but for Clay & Darlene it meant two overnight train rides.

L'viv is a beautiful city, but on the only free day we had, it rained all day. It was a wonderful week, though, of fellowship with old friends and new, Bible studies, singing, intense prayer times, and much heart-wrenching sharing of personal needs and prayer. Our European Director Ken Matlack laid out three themes to characterize our work: to become a deeply spiritual community, a nurturing community, and a serving community. He presented the team of leaders that will be working with him.

We also discussed a book we had read together, covering modern currents in mission and in the world. It was a good stimulus for our conversation. Our L'viv team also presented their work, including a visit to their ministry center. Many prayers were answered this week, and we had much for which to thank God: the growth of the churches, the progress of the Gospel, and God's power in our personal lives and families -- as well as the beauty and cuisine of L'viv, the meeting-place of many eastern European cultures.

We look to God not only to provide the funds we all struggle to find for our ministry opportunities, but to provide vision, mercy, insight, humility, and all the gifts of the Spirit God has promised. Thanks to those who join us in prayer and partnership for the continent of Europe. May His light shine!

Many people have visited our site over the years, seeing the Matrushka doll banner of our family here on the "Quarternote". It occured to me that I've never posted the full picture! So, here it is below.

The idea for the picture was that we are all nested together in a family. The traditional Russian nesting dolls are a bit more matriarchal, with the mother figure often being the largest doll. The Russian name is "Matrushka" or "little mother" -- often with one mother doll after the next nested inside. (Actually, the name in Russian is pronounced Matryoshka, which we've Anglicized.)

In the family, each individual makes up the whole. Now that our family has moved on and we have an "empty nest", we certainly miss our kids, but they're creating their own families, and we're very happy for them. We're so thankful for PRAYER, which still keeps us connected! [...and Lex, if you read this, just remember that just because your doll is the smallest, that doesn't mean you are the least important!]


We’ve been traveling a good deal this summer. Darlene and Clay visited our works in Izmail and Belgorod-Dnestrovsky. On one bus, Clay’s pocket was picked in the push of the crowd, but we’re thankful we only lost $50 and a credit card, which is being replaced. Mind your wallets, folks!

Clay has been preaching a good bit this summer. Latest sermon: “The Resurrection of our Bodies” from 1 Corinthians 15:35-45. Although we talk a lot about the Resurrection of Jesus, we often neglect the doctrine of our own BODILY resurrection. What does it mean that we will have a PHYSICAL existence in the afterlife? For Paul, this was an important doctrine, and it should fill us with hope.

The visa situation in Ukraine is still very tenuous, and the laws are set to change again in September. Please pray that they will not make our work here impossible.

In the meantime, we’ve had to make short-term trips out of the country to renew our papers. The most recent was to Turkey during July. We were able to cross paths with the Apostle Paul on his First Missionary Journey, traveling to Antalya, the place he landed on the way to Antioch and Galatia. It is a beautiful area, set against the Taurus Mountains, and we even saw Cleopatra’s castle in Alanya. Sometimes, necessity isn’t all that bad!