Friends Afar, Soon to be Farther

The Hawkins family was transferred to the east coast this year.  The wrote to share that opportunities are taking them to Germany.  Reprinted with permission, here’s their update.

Hey Pastor Shawn,
It has been a crazy year here!  We have really enjoyed it here– all the DC attractions and being near family– but Northern Virginia just isn’t for us.  I think that Hawaii spoiled us.  The pace and stress level here is just not good.  Chip started looking around for other opportunities and Germany became the best option.   
We will be living in Stuttgart, and I think we have already found a house.  Ashley will finish her semester and then join us there.  She is thrilled!  All she wants to do is travel!  The boys are both really excited, too.  If they had not been, it would have been difficult to justify moving them again, but they have both been onboard from the beginning. 
Anyway, we are all really excited.  We sold our house in 12 hours for our asking price.  We close in a couple of weeks and have movers scheduled for September.  My head is spinning a bit, but we all agree that it seems meant to be. 
Germany is beautiful, and the people are so nice!  We were driving back from Heidelberg on our last Saturday there on back roads through all of these great villages.  In one, all the roads were MelanchthonStrasse, etc.  We turned a corner and drove right past Philip Melanchthon’s birthplace– there was a big statue of him out front.  Amazing!  Chip loved it, almost drove off the road!  
We are really looking forward to exploring all of the history there and going to church in the city.  I was in Stuttgart one day while Chip was at work and went into the Evangelische Kirche (Lutheran Church) in the center of town.  Beautiful architecture from the 11th century.  Southern Germany is a Lutheran stronghold so most all of the churches were protestant churches during the Reformation and are Evangelsiche/Lutheran now.  Anyway, the organist was playing this unbelievable pipe organ, and all of the songs were the hymns that we sing every Sunday.  I just LOVED it.  It is hard to explain how cool it was to feel completely at home in a country that I had never been to before and where I can’t speak the language (yet!).  
We do miss all of you guys in Hawaii. 
God bless you, Pastor!


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