June Johnson, Ukraine
LeutzestraBe 57 73525
Several months ago, realizing that I could not create it on my own, I asked God to give me more love for Him. My desire was sincere, but I could have never guessed that He would answer as He did. God turned the tables and chose to show me how much He loves me.
Adopted –Waltraud (wife), Heinrich (husband) were the ‘bridge’ people for our group at Shonblick
and helped tremendously. During those first 4 months that were especially difficult, they came by
nearly daily with smiles, hugs, ready to help and answer questions. After living at the conference
center for a year, the group left Shonblick last March and we moved into town. Now a year and a
half later, despite the drive they continue to visit often…. still smiling and still ready to help.
For me the Kaufmann family came out of thin air. A year and a half ago, in my mess & stress,
they found me. Last year – from March to March, they and their daughter, Katharina, looked for
ways to help me (as taxi, translation, filling in documents, advice, visiting me in the hospital,
inviting me over for meals etc.). I felt like I had nothing to offer them, so the relationship felt
one-sided, and these type of ‘friendships’ often end in a short time. But because of their loving
hearts and my thirsty one, ours got stronger.
The gift of their friendship, for me is extra special because they have chosen to include me in their
lives. In the past 6 months, we’ve been able to spend more time together as they sincerely want to
bless, create rest, space and fun for me. Thanks to these 3, my life has a lot more balance and
laughter. I treasure the joy and friendship they have brought into my life. It was not earned or
deserved; in His grace God chose to give it and I am deeply grateful.
Grace refers to God’s character trait or disposition or inclination to treat people better than we deserve…. John Piper
Banana splits - A month ago, I sent out the following text message to the group.
I invite each of you to join us for banana splits tomorrow at lunch. Why? Our group really has
much to celebrate!
Andriy and Sveta have returned from the hospital. (Rehab hospital for those with spinal injuries)
Yulia and Galina have returned from the hospital. (The same rehab hospital for those with spinal
Mykola P. has returned from the hospital. (After having plastic surgery to close his pressure
Arina and Katya have returned from the hospital. (After treating Arina for pneumonia.)
Sergi celebrates the news of being cancer free! (After surgery & 6 months of chemotherapy.)
Saturday is Roman's birthday; and this month I celebrate 25 years of serving as a missionary.
An ice cream party was my way of trying to point out to the group that we had so much to be
thankful for. We didn’t earn it or deserve it – each gift was purely God’s goodness towards us.
Then 35 bowls of ice cream later, God pulled one on me; when the group gathered around me
to congratulate for my 25-year mark and thank me for being with them. God is kind and He
chose to give another sweet gift to my heart, and I am deeply grateful.
The word grace also refers to the help of God which produces real practical outcomes in
A visit – This morning my immediate supervisor (Larry) and his supervisor (David) left for their
next visit. It spoke volumes to me that they would choose to include me in their travel schedule
in Germany, giving me a whole day of their time. It’s one thing to communicate by email,
but it's a whole different level to see, taste, smell, hear and touch for yourself. The organization
that I work through – Christian Missionary Fellowship (CMF Int.) – does a lot of things well.
The guys set aside the chance to rest in order to hear the stories of several families in the group.
Later, I got to show and share the Shonblick conference center with them and then we returned
for more 1:1 visits and dinner. Then they used the group evening devotional time to share their
story and encourage the group. As our time was wrapping up, Sergi & Natasha Bolchuk,
founders of the AGAPE Rehab center in Lutsk surprised us.
The Bolchuk’s formally presented to David the ‘to One God’ Honor & Glory White Cross to
CMF Int., and, as their missionary, to me. This award is given on behalf of the Ukrainian
government to non-Ukrainians to recognize those who have played a significant role in aiding
the country during the current war. It was humbling because we hardly did it alone.
All the glory goes to God’s grace!
“…And I don't have a context For that kind of love
I don't understand I can't comprehend….”
I want to understand His love so I can make it fit into a box, stay neatly on a shelf, tucked into a definition, or set within the margins. But God’s immeasurable is oblivious of my restrictions.
With my prayer, it was as if I had approached Him with a teaspoon of my love and in return, a waterfall of His love cascaded over me. A brain blowing volume…never ending…gloriously messy…uncontrollably spraying everywhere; His powerful overwhelming love thoroughly soaking my heart.
Waltraud, Katharina and Heinrich Kaufmann - my adopted German family
In October I was honored to receive the 2023 Bud and Dorothy Page Lebanon High School Alumni Hall of Fame for Class of 1984. My mother, Marilynn Johnson, accepted the award on my behalf. As I could not attend, I sent this 11 min. video as my acceptance speech and I thought perhaps you would like to watch it.
*After you click on the link, click on "Go to link: https://www.....
CMF INTERNATIONAL is a global mission team at work in 26 countries creating dynamic, Christ-centered communities.
Hand in Hand Farm
Hand In Hand Farm has been partnering with Christ Community for almost ten years now.
We appreciate the mission support, but the greater blessing has been that of having a safe church to bring vulnerable families to so that they can experience the love and support of a church family while they learn about God and Jesus. Christ Community has been that church family.
When you look out over the sanctuary during the service, one sees a lot of grey hair. The uninformed would think that this is a church on the way out, elders without another generation to succeed them. What they don’t see are all of the grandparents here, ready to nurture the future generations that are brought through these doors.
Most of you have heard about Hand In Hand Farm through our presentations. If you want to find out more about what we do, it’s easy to Google us and find our website and Facebook page. However, it’s more important to us that you know about YOUR role in what comes AFTER Hand In Hand Farm, the church family that’s needed to provide support for families for the rest of their lives.
Hand In Hand Farm 35105 Ede Road, Lebanon, OR 97355 541-451-1243 Visit our website: www.handinhandfarm.org Share and like our page on Facebook!: www.facebook.com/handinhandfarm/ Sign up for our email mailing list!
Lutheran World Relief
Rub-A-Dub-Dub, Fill Up The Tub!
It’s time again to fill up our tub with items for the Personal Care Kits, Baby Kits and School Kits for Lutheran World Relief.
You can help just by picking up a few extra items when you are out shopping.
Every extra bar of soap, box of crayons or pair of baby socks contributes to our efforts.
Place your donated items in the galvanized tub located in The Gathering Place (Fellowship area).
Thank you for your ongoing help with this Mission project!
All items listed are the only items LWR will accept in their kits. We appreciate your donations of these specific items.
Personal Care Kit
Adult size toothbrushes in original packaging
Metal nail clippers
Bath-size towels and hand towels in dark colors
Baby Care Kit
Light weight cotton T-shirts (no onesies)
Long or short sleeved gowns or sleepers (without feet). Sizes up to 18 months
Jackets, sweaters or sweatshirts with hood or include baby cap
Pairs of socks
Hand towels (dark colors)
70-sheet notebooks wide or college rule
Rulers (30 centimeters on one side)
#2 pencils with erasers
Black or blue pens (no gel ink)
2.5 inch erasers
Box of 16 or 24 crayons
Affirming God’s love for all people, we work with Lutherans and partners around the world to end poverty, injustice and human suffering.
Operation Christmas Child
The Amazing Journey of a Shoebox Gift Begins with You and Results in Evangelism, Discipleship, and Multiplication.
Operation Christmas Child “Shoeboxes”
A reminder — we have a collection box in the church’s Gathering Place for any items donated for our packing party. The shoeboxes are available for you to pick up and fill. Suggested items for each age level are listed by the boxes.