Saturday, October 30, 2010

Hello Scotland!

Hey folks! I'm just sitting in a sports Bar...drinking chocolate milk of course ;)
We're all watching a game of football, and by that I mean soccer. It's a pretty chill evening. Scotland is absolutely wonderful! I've found my family name everywhere around here, so that's pretty exciting. On Friday we shopped and explored and walked everywhere, and boy did my feet hurt! The wind is absolutely crazy up here- I honestly thought I might fall over! Haha. Today we toured the Edinburgh castle and the view was absolutely incredible! Such a cool place. So now some of the girls and I are going to go to a Starbucks and just hang out for the night. So that's just a little update. Can't wait to show you pictures!! Love y'all! :)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Edinburgh!

Well folks! Friday morning we're heading to Edinburgh, Scotland for travel weekend! We're about to spend 4 days in the beautifully antique city where it's freezing cold, they have castles, they wear kilts, and play the bagpipes. I cannot wait! What I'm really excited about is experiencing it for my Grandpa though. I know you never made it out here Papa but I'm so excited to experience it for you! :)
We're going to tour the castle, go on a ghost-walk, sit in the Elephant Room (where J.K. Rowling wrote the Harry Potter books), go window shopping, sleep in a room of 18 people, go on a 3 hour tour..(a 3 hour tourrrrrrr!) and wherever else our feet lead us. I can't wait.
Keep us in our prayers! Especially that we'll stay safe and that Jesus's light would shine brightly through us while we leave Capernwray.
I'll update you later!
Cheerio!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

One month.

“Only one person can live the Christian life: Jesus Christ, in the end, it will not matter how many things you did for God, how many people you converted, or how many good deeds you did in his name, but how much you allowed Him to live in you and work through you.”

Our speaker in church said this today and consequently, it’s exactly what I needed for the last part of my essay. PERFECT! This really struck me though, besides the fact that it was perfect for my paper, because I feel like since I’ve been here at Capernwray, I’ve been putting up this “perfect little Christian’ fa├žade. When I realized that I truly cannot live the Christian life without Christ truly living in me and working through me, everything I do is useless. Only when I live my life through Christ and through him alone can I ever accomplish the work he has set out for me. What a great thing to learn. I am always learning. These next 6 months are totally going to rock my world.

Whoops. 5 months. 1 month ago I said good-bye to my mommy and daddy, standing in the parking lot crying my eyes out as they prayed for me. One month ago I had my bag go thorugh security 4 times because they kept seeing something sharp, which turned out to by my Crayons for my Princess Coloring book. One month ago I sat in the middle between 2 old ladies who didn’t like to talk, while trying not to cry because I already missed my mama and daddy. One month ago I left everything I ever knew behind for a grand new adventure that I couldn’t wait to start.
It’s incredible how much one month can do to your life.

I have learned so many things. I have learned how to live with 3 other people. I have learned how to get up just at the right time before breakfast. I have learned to never drink the instant coffee, and that Sheep are not cute animals. They’re stupid, wandering things who poop EVERYWHERE. I’ve learned that it’s not ideal to fall asleep during lectures when you’re in the 2nd row. I’ve learned that walking the Loop is not only beautiful, but great exercise. I’ve learned that green rolling hills in pictures are nothing compared to seeing the real things. I’ve learned that my life must be completely and overwhelmingly surrendered and filled by the most High God who is the same yesterday, today and forever. I’ve learned that God is enough. Plain and simple.

It’s crazy how much I’ve learned just in these few weeks. 30 days living surrounded by the presence of God can really change your life if you only let him. 30 days can test you, try you, break you, strengthen you, move you, change you. I can’t wait for the next 5 months.
 

Thursday, October 21, 2010

London-Paris, Paris-Milan, Milan-Venice, Venice-Rome, Rome-London

There are my travel plans for Christmas. It’s okay to be a bit jealous. There’s a travel agent who works for Lancaster College who’s helping us plan everything and get the cheapest deals for all of it. It’s going to be fantastic! I can’t wait to go travel around with my friends Corinne and Nicole, (my roomies that don’t live in my room, they live next to me.) We’re going to have some awesome adventures and I can’t wait to go traipsing throughout Europe.
Life has been pretty normal around here. Our first big paper is due on Tuesday….and I still haven’t started. I guess my procrastinating didn’t get left at High School like I hoped :P Anways, Friday and Sunday are being completely filled with writing and getting that paper done. Saturday my friends and I are taking the train to Lancaster, to get some Starbucks and FAST internet to look up stuff for Christmas break. It’ll be nice. REAL ESPRESSO! Gasp. My heart is melting with anticipation of drinking all that Carmel Brule goodness.
Tonight is our 2nd outreach, and we decided (as in my team) that we were going to plan the whole thing. So, tonight, we are playing lots of games to get all their energy out, then we’re going to sing some songs (Wagon Train songs of course, I’m excited to bring “I Like Bananas” to the UK) and then talk about Jonah, with hand-motions of course. It’s such a different dynamic working with 9-11 year olds compared to Jr. Highers. I still like jr. highers better, but these guys are pretty cool too, as long as they don’t play the “Running-Around-Screaming” game they played last week ;)
Tomorrow night we’re having “Social Night” where we go and do different things with different staff. I am staying here and watching Prince of Egypt while pigging out on popcorn and cookies for instance. It’s going to be great, especially since we’ve been reading through the Old Testament, we’ll see it in cartoon-form. Haha.
So that’s about it for now. It’s getting chillier and chillier and I have to keep reminding myself, “It’s not even winter yet Katie.” Oh no. I’m going to freeze.

And oh! I would LOVE for people to send me “snail mail.” It’s so much more exciting to get it than just boring old emails. So if you’re bored one day and have nothing to do, send me a letter! You may just get one back from me if you do ;)
Katelyn MacDonald
Capernwray Hall Bible School
Carnforth, Lancashire
LA6 1AG England

Monday, October 18, 2010

Well let's see here....

Hey friends!
It's been awhile since I've written, so here's the deal on what's been going on inside the life of Katie MacDonald.
Well, Friday was a pretty chill day. I mostly spent it going on walks and hanging out with my roomies. It also involved lots of pictures which in turn involved lots of jumping...and heel clicking....yeah.
Next we headed to The Capernwray Story, where we learned how Capernwray came to be and why it was built. Did you know the entire Manor was built for the Marton family, all 8 of them. They decided they needed a bigger house...ummmyeah. :) After listening to Mrs. Thomas, wife of Major Ian Thomas who started the whole thing, speak about how Capernwray was purchased and so on, we watched a hilarious video made in the 60s. At first it was just a silent film, until a rather hilarious gentlemen decided to commentary the whole thing. That just made it even better.
Saturday started off with waking up at the un-beautiful hour of...8:30, (hey- when it's your only day off to sleep in, 8:30 is early ok?), to do some ZUMBA! Aerobic dance class basically. I sure had no idea what I was doing but it sure was fun! After that we had brunch, and then comes the most exciting part of my day off.....homework! Well ok, it wasn't actually due until 2 weeks from then but I decided to get a head start. Wow- I'm learning more already :P One lady who came to tell us how to do all our assignments told us to reward ourselves with things when we get stuff done....and that didn't include chocolate (boo) so I rewarded myself with a nice long nap. It was glorious. After that me and my friends walked around the loop. We then watched the epic Dodgeball Tournament...it was fantastic. Some of these kids are intense! And my roomie- Pam? She's an ABSOLUTE BEAST! Haha. She's fantastic.
Sunday wasn't really too exciting either, except for the part where Corinne and I ate so much bread at tea time that, even though we had walked the loop twice already, we walked around again! Gotta get rid of all those carbs somehow. :P My favorite part of Sunday however, was when we had mandatory quiet time to reflect on the last couple weeks and hang out with Jesus. It was totally something I needed and was absolutely glorious.
Well, that's basically it. We have a new guest lecturer from Scotland named John Allan and he's teaching us on the book of Ecclesiastes and Living in a Non-Christian world. He talks fast though, so there's no way I can fall asleep without missing something ;)
Miss you all!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Africa?

Today we had a meeting about the 10 day outreach in Kenya, Africa in February. I didn't actually go to the meeting because I figured there's no way I would be able to go, no way I could pay for it. But as I was sitting there reading my bible, God just spoke to me and told me, "Of course YOU can't do it, but do you trust me that I can?" And that rocked me. So I walked upstairs, stood outside the door, and it finished right as I got there. I asked one of the students how much it would be. He said 1,000-1,300 pounds. That's about 1,600 american dollars. Once again I just said, "there's no way in heck that I can do that!" And once again, God asked me if I trusted that he can and that he knows what he's doing.
I'm still praying about it. I have no idea how I would get the funds by fundraising while I'm here. They said you can ask your church about it but my church really isn't that big. I know there's nothing that God can't do but sometimes when you can't see an obvious path it's hard to start walking down it. But God told me to walk, so walk I do.
I'd like to ask for prayer for this as these next few months of planning this comes. I don't know when an opportunity like this will ever come up again, and to be logistical, 1600 dollars to go to Africa for 10 days is kind of an amazing deal. To get to work in villages with kids, teach them songs, play with them, build houses, whatever it is that we would do would be such an incredible opportunity, especially since I've already had the opportunity to come here to England.
So that's it. Keep me in your prayers, especially that I would stop doubting the power that God has in my life. He CAN do this. He CAN provide. He CAN sustain. The question is, am I willing to let him?

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Nothin' too exciting

If there's anything worth saying, it's that I can't believe it's already Wedneday. Seriously, it's going SO fast! I swear it was only Sunday.....anyways. We've just been having letures and such. Our guest lecturer this week is Robert Amess, an old preacher man who's voice I can only compare to Ken Graves,....but way, way cooler, if that's even possible. Every time during lectures I just wish he would take us to the Lounge, build a fire, give us hot chocolate, and then read us The Chronicles of Narnia. It's that epic. Haha. Anyways, he is teaching us on the book of Hebrews. So it's a little crazy, just because Hebrews is such a difficult book to understand for most Christians I think, but we're workin' through and I'm enjoying it.

 I start my outreach on Thursday. Me and 3 others are going to a church to hang out with 10-14 year olds to hang out, play games, and get to know them. What's funny is the 3 others in my group don't really like jr-high age kids at all. Haha! It's going to be an adventure. Thank goodness God made my heart loving to all those awkward insecure little kiddos. :P

Other than all that, not too much has been going on. Yesterday was incredibly beautiful, there was sunshine and it was warm! Absolutely wonderful weather to read your bible outside in the sunshine while listening to Michael Buble I believe ;) Today, is the total opposite. Clouds and freezing cold weather that makes me and my roommates flock around the space heater.

Right now I'm hanging out in my neighbors room, because my roomies are gone to Carnforth, and we're just listening to music, finishing out assignments, and enjoying being warm. We keep saying we're going on a LOOONGGG walk to work off those chocolate filled crosissants we had this morning...but I don't think that's actually going to happen. Haha.

Well, sorry it's nothing exciting. I'll update you when I've got more exciting news to post.
And no, I have not met any "Henry James"........yet ;)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

A Capernwray version of Kajabe-Can-Can, animal calls, newspapers, music, noodles, laughter, fun

Last night was game night. And boy was it intense. Put 140 or so 18-24 year olds in a room and give them some competition and you gotta fun night on your hands. First we played the Capernwray version of Kajabe. Everyone held hands, (we're talking about 70 kids) and stood around 2 blankets around the floor. As you can guess, the point is to get everyone to touch the blanket without you touching it yourself. Sounds easy? Hah. With nothing to grip but two other people's sweaty hands and big giant boys running as fast as they can towards you to make you fall? It's very intense, and not as easy. Of course, growing up at Hume knowing how the game is won, I stayed in a long time, however, I never touched the blanket, but sweaty hands and being pulled two different directions ended that game for me.

Next we played a game called "Animal Family." Everyone gets a piece of paper, and on that paper it will either say: Father, Mother, Master, Miss, and Baby (animal name). Basically, the music plays, and you walk around switching papers between people. When the music stops, you have to read the paper, find out what your animal is, and then, during the mass confusion, find the rest of your animal family by hang motions, noise-making, or whatever it takes to find everyone else. Once everyone is found, you then have to sit in a chair, going in order from Father to Baby. And oh- did I mention you all sit on the same chair? Yes. Mother sits on Father's lap. Master sits on Mother's lap, Miss sits on Master's lap, and Baby sit's on Miss's lap. Awkward? Nah. :P

The next game was by far my favorite. The RA's placed pieces of newspaper on the ground. The music would play and when it stopped, you had to be on a piece of newspaper. Easy right? Sure- until 7 other people want to be on that same newspaper. Everytime I was standing there, desperatly clinging to whoever was next to me, I told them, "Now this is how friend's are made!" The smell of bad breath, sweat, and energy makes the game all that much more fun. However, having an elbow pressed into your collarbone for a long time is not. I still have a bruise. But it was worth it.

There were more games that were played but there weren't as exciting as those. It was a really fun night and made me really get to know more of my Cape family. After this, my roomies and neighbors were really hungry. After unsucessfully calling to try and order Pizza or Chinese Food, we gave up and made Cup-o-Noodles, hot-chocolate, and gathered around a laptop and watched Aladdin. All in all, it was quite a fantastic way to spend a Saturday in England.

Now it's Sunday and after a great church service about how God uses even our stupid mistakes to further his glory, for example, David and Bathsheba, even in their sin, God gave them Solomon, through him came the family line of Jesus. It's still incredible to me that even though we make mistakes, God can use them and turn them into incredible things if we just accept his complete forgiveness and allow him to work.
Now i'm writing my 500 word essay on our bible discussion and reading the book that's supposed to be finished by next week, and then figuring out all this hostel for Edinburgh stuff. Pretty lazy day. Maybe a nice day for a nap too eh? :P

Friday, October 8, 2010

Star-Tripping, Coffee-Drinking, Bathroom-Cleaning, Thrift-store Shopping, Bible-Reading, Life-Loving

This sums up the majority of what I've been up to these last few days. Playing the epic game called "Star Tipping" where you look up at the night sky, pick the brightest star, spin around as fast as you can looking up at it, and then trying to stay standing when a bright flashlight hits your face. It's hilarious.
Today we had work day, which is where instead of paying people to come clean the building, the students clean it. We get put on teams and then set off to clean from 9-12:30. I cleaned with a girl named Raquel, who's from Barcelona. That's Bar-tha-lona, for all those of you who don't know how real Spain- spanish is spoken. :) We cleaned the staff guys dorms and bathrooms.....da da daaaaa. It wasn't too bad, in fact, we even found a radio to listen to music while we cleaned so it was pretty great. Next week we get to have another lecture and then the week after that we'll clean again. It's not too bad, after all, my dad did teach me how to clean a toilet reeeeaaaallllly good. ;)
Later today I went into Carnforth, to get money out of the ATM...let me tell you, it was realll weird to see the machine spit out pounds and not dollars. But I must say that the Queen's face is much lovelier than our dead Presidents. :P
We hung out, went thrift store shopping, and then went to the cutest little cafe called Cafe Eldeweiss...or however you spell it. I had a yummy espresso coffee and a scone. It was delicious!
Tonight we are having a bonfire and then we're going to watch Hook on the big screen in the Conference Hall where we have our lectures. It'll be nice to relax for a bit. Saturday though will be spent frantically searching for a youth hostel to stay in during our travel weekend trip to Edinburgh, Scotland. There's no way I'm payin' 90 pounds for a B&B! Besides, it's an adventure, staying in a room of up to 36 strangers! Haha, don't worry, I'm not going it alone ;)
Love you and miss you all!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

England may love them, but I am not a fan of currant-flavored cough drops...

Hello there!
Oh goodness. Yesterday my roommate Pam and I had a total of 4 naps throughout the day, and my whole room went to bed by 10. 10! That's insane. Especially because lights out isn't until 11:30. My throat is getting sore and my head is really hurting so that's no fun. It took all that I was just to say awake during lectures this morning. We continued to Walk Thru The Bible, which is very interesting how we learn all the things and remember them, but when you're head is pounding, it's not that great. After that we had a bible discussion asking the questions: 1.How was the bible written? and how was it written?, Why do you believe this?, and, How should the Bible be read and applied in your life?

It was really interesting to hear others opinions and be able to talk and discuss with others what you thought and what you believed. I really enjoyed it.
After a lunch of sweet and sour pork and cos cos, I headed back to my room to start working on my 500 word essay on our discussion. And that's about as far as I got. :P
Tomorrow we have a test on "Intro to the Bible," however, it was kind of hard to understand what our lecturer really wanted us to do, but I for sure know that I must know all the book of the N.T in order, which I do, thanks to falling asleep to the girls next door singing the song at the top of their lungs, and know some of the chronological events of the O.T.

Hopefully it'll go well. After I work some more on my reading I'm going to take another nap, hopefully to rest my immune system a bit and so I'll be refreshed for another 2 hours of lectures tonight.
:)

Sunday, October 3, 2010

COLORING!

Sorry it's been a couple days since I last posted. Let's catch up on what's been going on.
So, after my walk on Friday, we had dinner and then family group. It was fantastic! They took us to their house, fed us Pizza and Chips...(French Fries for you un-british people), and then "Apple Crumble and Ice Cream." It was SO. GOOD. We played games, got to know each other a bit more, was reminded that Sue Gilmore prayed individually over each person to figure out what family group that we were put in, so I'm excited to really get to know my family. After family group, we hung out for awhile and then, after singing a bunch of Disney songs with my roomies, went to sleep. And then...gasp! Sleep in day! It was FANTASTIC! I slept in until 9:30...it was absolutely wonderful!
After enjoying not having to be anywhere for awhile, we headed to brunch where we had real breakfast food! Eggs! Bacon! Croissants! Beans....yes, beans. It was fantastic...I ate a lot. After breakfast me and my roomie Rachel and her friend Amanda began the journey to Carnforth...all 5 miles of it. After about a little more than an hour of walking, Graih, one of the workers, drove by and picked us up. It was brillant! I absolutely LOVE Carnforth! I didn't get to experience as much of it and explore as much of it as I liked too since the people I was with didn't really want to..but I still have 6 months to do that :) I bought a cute little jacket for 3 pounds at the Thrift Store, and some much needed Shampoo and Conditioner. We started to walk back...but I won't tell you how we got picked up in a car....except that in England, holding out your thumb is quite normal and happens all the time....don't freak out!
After coming back from a long tiring walk, we went to dinner and had donuts! Donuts and Lasagna and freaking amazing garlic bread! It was splendid. After that we had free time and then we all watched UP on the big screen in the Conference Hall. It was a blast. I really do love that movie. Lots of the European students hadn't seen it yet, so it was fun to watch them watch it.
Today it was raining, and we had church in the morning, and then lunch, and then....da da da daaaa...roommate and neighbor Cinderella watching- Princess Coloring Book- coloring afternoon! It was soo much fun!
Now I think it's time for a Sunday afternoon nap and then tea...as they call "dinner" here.
Cheerio Loves!

Friday, October 1, 2010

"Worship is all that we are, responding to all that HE is."

Well, it's raining again. So much for that glorious sunshine. I think I may even be getting just slightly claustrophobic being surrounded by all these gray clouds. haha.
This morning, after going to get my clothes from the dryer, found out that they were indeed, still wet. And not having 20 pence to pay for another 10 minutes, had to leave with them damp. They are now hanging as close to the space heater as possible. What a life.
This morning is either Work or Seminar morning. I am on team B so I got to go to the seminar. It's basically 4 hours of listening to a speaker. It was good, but ohhhhh man was I getting fidgity...let me out of here! Carolyn the outreach director spoke on Worship and planning services. It was really interesting and I learned a lot about what "worship" is and how it's done differently and what it really means to come back to "the heart" of worship.

Now I'm just sitting in my room listening to music, reading the 6 chapters of bible that needs to be read today while listening to Hillsong United. Did I mention we were reading through the entire new testament? Or that we are also reading through the entire new testament? Or that we have to memorize the books of the bible in order? And also 20 verses from all over the bible? Yeah...I didn't think I did.

Regular "school" starts on Monday...I'm excited to see what we'll do but not looking foward to all the assignments. Oh geez, welcome to college level work Katie. :)

This weekend some friends and I are going to walk into Carnforth and hang out, window shop (since we're poor international students), and then go eat delicious Chinese food at one of the restaurants there. Hopefully I'll be able to get internet I will post some pics.

Miss you! Be good and make good choices today!