Saturday morning I attended an event where a missionary family spoke face to face with a group of supporters from their living room in Vienna. Jeffrey and Lisa Schra are coming to the end of their first year of service at the International Christian School of Vienna. They and their two sons will not be returning to the US this summer, but they wanted to give a face to face report to their home church and some key individual supporters. They invited me as a CRWM representative. Sherman Street CRC organized some refreshments and some musical selections from Central Europe.
Jeffrey and Lisa had prepared a video showing a day in their lives. The highlight was being face to face with them. The screen that is normally used for projecting worship songs was filled with the Schra family. Mary Buteyn, a member of the church, had been able to visit the Schras in Vienna, which added a touch of realism to the encounter. The 30 or so participants came away from the event with their connection to the Schras strengthened and with a deper understanding of the work their are doing as an extension of the church here.
Has your church used Skype to connect with missionaries at a distance? This event happened on a Saturday. What would you think of having a moment for missions by Skype as part of the regular worship service?
The school which the Schras serve began as a place to educate missionary kids. However, it quickly broadened its mission to include educating other children including Austrians and a variety of expats living in Vienna. This includes a number of non-Christian families who send their children to this distinctively Christian school. You can read more about the school here.