We have definitely had a warm welcome back to our home in Mexico. Some of our lovely friends had made posters and left us a big bowl of fruit to greet us on our arrival!
We left the UK to come back 2 weeks ago, but it already feels like we've been back for ages. We had such an amazing time catching up with family and friends in the UK, so as always it was really hard to leave. We managed to see most people but, as inevitably happens, we didn't manage to catch up with everyone - we're really sorry to those that we didn't manage to catch up with )-:
God provided for us so amazingly whilst we were back - right from a house to use as our base in Torquay (thank you soooo much Brian and Ros), to a renowned surgeon with expertise in the area of lipomas (we found out that Steve had an intramuscular lipoma - benign tumour - on his chest).
Thank you for your continued prayers for Steve's recovery. It was a pretty hectic time packing up to leave and then recovering from the flight and jet lag took it's toll on all of us. So Steve has made slower progress than we had hoped. This is partly due to the fact that there were several pressing situations that he had to deal with on his return, and to the fact that Charlie has beaten him up a couple of times!!
The flight went really smoothly - Charlie chatted up the air hostess and got extra treats as a result, the girls made friends with some Mexican students who were practicing their English, and we even got given a cream tea on the plane (which we naughtily smuggled back to Mexico and which today we have enjoyed with some fresh scones!)
The kids have actually coped really well with adjusting back to life in Mexico, and although they took a week to get over the jet-lag and Nisha went down with a tummy bug, both Anya and Nisha have now had a few days at school and have really enjoyed being back. They took the photo book that Nanna and Pappa made for them in to school to show their classes some of the things they did in England, and they shared some Jelly Babies with their friends and teachers too. It was really nice to see how excited both their friends and teachers were to see them back, it reassured us that for the moment they are in the right place for them. We are currently organising a meeting with the partners of the school however to ask them some hard questions about their management of the school, so depending on how they respond, we may need to evaluate where the girls go to school next year.
They were really really excited to see Susie and Matthew as well (the Forsythe children who are also missionaries here) as they have especially missed them. Please pray for the whole Forsythe family at the moment as they have had a really tough few weeks. About a week before we were due to return to Mexico, Gemma was rushed in to hospital to have emergency surgery after they discovered she had an ectopic pregnancy that had ruptured her fallopian tube. She had a litre and a half of blood in her stomach area and the situation was life-threatening. We are so thankful to God that Jonny and close friends acted so fast and got her to the nearby hospital, and we praise God that she is now well on the way to recovery. This has had a huge emotional impact on them all as well, and we ask for your prayers for them as they slowly get back to 'normal' day to day life.
The other thing that was really exciting for Anya was that the carrots she had planted had grown whilst she'd been away!
It was also really lovely to get back and to see Mim. She is an intern from Wales who will be staying with us until the middle of July. She got here before us in the end because of our delay in coming back. so she had already made herself at home, and we immediately felt like she was part of the family! The kids warmed to her straight away (in fact Anya followed her around like a puppy!) and Steve and I already knew her from the times she had come on teams to Mexico, so we are so blessed to have her here again.
Mim is helping out at MEFI during the time she is here and practicing her Spanish at the same time. She has been an enormous blessing to the team and to the street young people, and we're praying that this won't be the last time she's here in Mexico.
Please pray for the various teams that are coming to visit over the next couple of months. We have 5 teams and 5 interns coming, the majority will be working with MEFI. One of the interns - Olivia - is 16 and will be staying with us for a month after the team whom she is arriving with depart. Please pray for her as she has been on a team before and has a massive heart for Mexico and the street young people. She and her parents are quite nervous as this is the first time she has been anywhere on her own.
Please pray for Steve as he takes back the responsibility of running the field. There are a lot of challenging situations that he is dealing with at the moment, but at the same time the ministry here is entering a new chapter where we are hoping to network with a lot more churches and see God's work through OMS expand in to other parts of Mexico.