|Old Governor's Mansion from the time that Germany controlled Qingdao|
|Another shipping port, not as big as Singapore's but almost|
|Laoshan is the part of the mountain range outside of Qingdao|
When we came to Singapore 4 years ago we knew that we would be returning to China at some point. Although, we weren’t sure of how or when, we knew that we couldn’t walk away from China that easily! We’ve been impressed recently by the story of the Exodus, when Moses told the fleeing slaves of Egypt to stand still, the Lord had other ideas. With an army at their back and a roaring river at their front He said, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on.” (In other words, “Stop wailing, I never said to stand still, start moving forward.”) And it seems we’ve had the same word spoken on our lives. Adopting Amelia and integrating her into our family and care for her medically has been a huge focus of these years, and we couldn’t have picked a better place. The medical support has been high quality and all English! Mike has loved teaching social studies and spending time with students from all over the world. Ashley was a guidance counselor for three years until Grey was born.
We’ve thoroughly enjoyed our time in Singapore; our children have been enriched in many ways through the teachers and staff at International Community School. It’s going to be hard to leave behind our friends, not to mention, the comforts of a beautiful and clean ‘city in a garden’. But God has opened a unique door to allow us to work with Leadership Development Institute Schools in China. Since 1986, LDi has been making a difference in the lives of expatriate students and their families through International Schools. So, we are now busily going through the paperwork to procure a visa for China before we leave Singapore and figuring out all the other details of an international move. We are also planning our time back in the States this summer.
Mike will teach high school Social Studies, at International School of Qingdao (ISQ), in Shandong Province. Ashley will stay at home with Grey and hopes to reconnect with some of the activities she was doing in China before, such as orphan advocacy and rehabilitation for the disabled. There are ongoing projects such as these in Qingdao. The older 4 children will attend the International School where Mike is teaching and we are praying for friends and families to build relationships with over the next few years as the kids enter high school and prepare for college and adult life.
We're excited for this opportunity to be used by God to have an impact not only on the lives of our students, but also on our Chinese neighbors and associates. If you would like to find out more information, please check out the LDi website at: http://www.ldieducation.org/ and contact us.
We covet your prayers as we make this big transition,
Mike & Ashley
Facebook: Michael Stern or Ashley Sell Stern