October 1, 2012 -- Travels West: Iowa, Nebraska, Pennsylvania

Last week was grand. The company was wonderful, the work was pleasant, the weather was beautiful - it would have been perfect if Ruth could have come with me.

First stop was Lincoln, Nebraska, to visit Steve and Jen Allen. They ramped up freshman outreach this year, but were a little disappointed in the results. Students are coming, but not huge numbers. We decided part of the problem was needing to do more careful follow-up. I got a chance to see Steve's Ministry Team meeting - a first. I was very impressed with his leaders! Pray for God to move freshmen to check out Nebraska RUF.

On to Iowa City to see Josh and Julie Vahle. Josh is amazing with students one to one. I also attended one of his Bible studies. During introductions one of the leading students announced that she was getting busy and this would be her last RUF meeting. As Josh searched for a reply, the rest of the students bust into laughter. They had spent the dinner hour planning pranks on Josh, and apparently there are a lot more to come! Pray for Josh and Julie.

I wanted to go home, but I also wanted to go to the Mid-Atlantic Fall Conference. As I was deciding, Rob Ilderton called to say that he was in the Philadelphia airport (where I had landed), and could I give him a ride to the conference? His flight to Harrisburg was delayed, and he was supposed to be the MC for the weekend. That made my decision for me.

If a Pennsylvania conference does not seem to fit in a report on travels west, you have never been to the Ligonier Conference Center. Somehow I got it into my head that it was four hours away, but it was more like five and a half. Rob and I were late, but we caught the last part of the Friday message. I was exhausted from flying and driving, so I went to bed.

It was great to see the ministers and interns, and many students from Penn State, Pitt, U. of Maryland, and Millersville U. I talked to two students who are very interested in our intern program. Jon Talley, campus minister at Washington and Lee, gave excellent messages. And Rob was hilarious as the MC. I left just before noon and got home at dinnertime.

This week I'm headed south. The oversight committee for RUF national meets on Tuesday, and the coordinators are meeting on Wednesday. On Thursday and Friday I'll drive to Jackson, Mississippi and back to evaluate a man as a possible RUF minister.
Northeast@ruf.org • 610-691-0988 • 631 Fourth Avenue, Bethlehem, PA 18018