Emily RunyeonI had the privilege of going on an Arrows International mission trip to Costa Rica and Nicaragua this summer. Arrows International is an organization that takes a group of dancers to other countries to spread the gospel through dance! We trained for 10 days, learned 8 dances, and then flew to Costa Rica and Nicaragua to perform in schools, churches, markets, and even on a Nicaraguan TV station. We also taught numerous dance workshops to the community. I believe many lives were touched and changed (including my own!), and 63 students gave their lives to Christ! I highly recommend taking an Arrows International mission trip to any dancer out there! I can definitely view this trip as a pivotal point in my life!
This summer I was a bridesmaid in my best friend's wedding, and had lots of fun reconnecting with many friends from college at the wedding. Then I was off to the American Dance Festival for my 5th summer where I work as the Production Stage Manager of the Reynolds Theater at Duke University. Every summer at ADF is incredibly diverse, and this summer, in addition to working with many amazing companies from around the world and seeing the hand of God move in this secular arena, I also got to discover and invent many different ways to clean almost any substance off of Marley, including but not limited to: baby powder, colored hairspray, orange juice, squashed grapes and figs, paint, feathers, sequins, massive amounts of hot glue, fresh flowers, coffee, raw meat, blood, and of course sweat and tears. All for the love of dance. :)
Sarah YarbroughThis August I spent a week in Wisconsin at Christian Disciple Farm, a bible school day camp for children and young adults with special needs. The theme for the week was Everywhere Funfare/Carnival and my group was called the Amazing Animal Trainers. I was paired up with a buddy, an awesome ten year old who taught me a lot about friendship and playtime. We got to know each other throughout the week as we climbed the giant rock wall, tried our hand at arts and crafts, rocked out in the music garden, acted out bible stories, and ate lunch together. In the evening there were activities for the volunteers; hiking, kayaking, trap shooting, bible study, worship, and ice breaker activities. My time on the farm with my buddy and the other volunteers was an incredible, full, life-giving experience that I am still learning from and am grateful for.
Tiffany StricklandThis summer I was a pastoral intern at Deer Park United Methodist Church. If you had asked me last year if I wanted to go to seminary, I might of looked at you like you were crazy. Last year, I woke up one day and thought, "You should go to seminary!" Strange, I thought. That thought had never crossed my mind before so I prayed about what that mean't and eventually it led me to this internship. It gave me the full pastor experience from hospital visits, daily church management, leading Bible studies, to even preaching. Preaching was the part I was most nervous about but after I said my opening line, I didn't want it to end. I loved every minute of it.
I also got to go with my mom and aunt to the Mary Kay 50th Anniversary Seminar and you will never guess who I got to see performing there! No other than Ad Deum's Dani Stinger. She was amazing and you could tell she was having a blast. I finished out my summer break by visiting friends and family in Dallas, Georgia, and South Carolina. It was a wonderful summer break.
This summer I was able to travel to visit friends and family from my home in Florida and Georgia. I was also able assist at a few dance intensives and participate in a performance honoring our country called "We the People." However, my number one job this summer was being a supportive wife. My husband Bob graduated from University of Houston's Law School (magna cum laude!!!) in May and spent June and July studying for the bar exam. While I was teaching/rehearsing/dancing at our Ad Deum summer dance intensive Bob was spending three days taking the hardest test of his life. The next day he flew to Uganda to spend a week with International Justice Mission. Their goal was to organize and file in court rooms so that their projects may run more smoothly. After that we took a well needed vacation. We went a cruise to Isla Rotan, Belize, and Mexico which was incredible. We were able to relax and enjoy God's beautiful creation. It was a wonderful, restful time to have before I started my fourth season at Ad Deum and before he started his job as an attorney at Hogan Lovells. Praise be to God for all He has blessed us with this year.
Stay tuned to see who is dancer of the week next week!