Greetings from Taiwan! June 2020

The Lord is my strength and my shield; in Him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to Him. Psalm 28:7 (ESV)



Anti Homework Pressure

We have enough pressure!! No more!!


Campus Clean Up




The Student School Grind 
(a.k.a. – We Have Enough Pressure!)

A former colleague once compared a school year to an expectant mother. She described the joy, the possibilities – even the delusions of grandeur a mother-to-be can feel. A new school year parallels this excitement. Teachers and students daydream about the year to come with hopeful expectations. By mid-year, the newness wears off. At the ¾ mark, daily tasks become a grind. By the end of a pregnancy or school year, everyone is exhausted and looking forward to the arrival of something new. My students in Taiwan reach the exhausted state rather quickly. In truth, they have very little time away from school or academic activities. 

An average school day can be remarkably long. Beginning at 7:15 am, students complete a morning homeroom period and eight standard 50 minute class periods. They also share daily campus clean-up responsibilities which include:  sweeping walk ways and drive ways, cleaning bathrooms, removing trash and recycling from the classrooms, sweeping and mopping floors, cleaning chalkboards, and washing windows and desks. Over 2000 students maintain the majority of the school campus. At 5 pm dismissal, many students also attend supplemental cram schools to improve or strengthen English, math, science, music, art, or sports. Some students will attend two of these schools after a regular school day, arriving home at 9 or 10 pm to complete several hours of homework. The culture at large heavily endorses the Confucian principle of education. Effort and persistence are considered more valuable than ability; therefore, every student is expected to be an overachiever.
What does this mean for school-aged learners? They’re exhausted and stressed in ways adults find difficult to manage. As a result, students are speaking up quietly, yet profoundly. This fall, a class fashioned t-shirts with the following message:  “Anti Homework Pressure.” Recently, I found this statement inside a classroom desk:  “We have enough pressure!! No more!!” Students don’t feel they are good enough; they will never meet all of the expectations. Thankfully, I have a comforting message to share. We are not good enough on our own, but thanks be to God! We are made new and perfect because of Jesus. He has taken away all of the sin and shortcomings that weigh us down and gives us new life in Him. This message is all the more important for the students at Concordia Middle School, one that I’m blessed to share.




Independence Day
(a.k.a. – The Last Day of School)

Students and teachers celebrate two independence days each year, the official national holiday and the last day of school. For American teachers, the last day of school normally arrives first. That’s not the case for the foreign teachers at CMS this year. In topsy-turvy 2020, things are a little unusual. 

Taiwan’s Ministry of Education advised adding three weeks to the Chinese New Year break in February. This was done as a nation-wide effort to curb the spread of the COVID-19 virus. It was a sound and effective decision; however, two of these three weeks must be completed at the end of the regular school year. The 2019-20 school year will conclude on July 14, a date that truly feels bizarre.
We’re making the final push to the end of the school year. As students and teachers are feeling worn out, I’m reminded of the following:  “The Lord is my strength and my shield; in Him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to Him.” Psalm 28:7 (ESV) The make-up weeks allow American teachers at CMS more time with to build relationships and share the Gospel with students and Taiwanese colleagues – and we give thanks in these extraordinary times!



Earlier this year, my bilingual students created videos to send to pen pals
in the United States. This 2 minute video shares some information about CMS.
Click the link below to take a look!  




Home Service
(a.k.a. – Staying Connected)

Home service is vital for missionaries to stay connected to their support system. Most workers in the mission field return home every other year. Working as a missionary and teacher at a school, I follow the school schedule. The school’s summer break allows my home service to occur more often. Normally, I’m able to return to the United States each year to reconnect with supporters, family, and friends. Due to the global pandemic, I’m not able to join you this summer.


While I am sad to miss time with my brothers and sisters in Christ, I will be reaching out to congregations and individuals more often this summer to share updates about the mission work at Concordia Middle School. Check your inbox for videos and highlights from me and other teachers at CMS. Thank you for your partnership and support as we take the Good News of Jesus to our school community and Chiayi!  



Please Pray For:

  • Students preparing for the last testing session of the school year – that they may be strengthen and reassured
  • Myself and other missionaries delaying home service, that we find meaningful connections from afar 

Give Thanks For: 

  • God’s protection as our school remains open during the global pandemic
  • Congregations around the world who are able to reopen, worshiping together again



Financial Partnership

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Donate by Phone
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Donate by Mail
Make checks payable to: 
PO Box 66861 
St. Louis, MO 63166-6861
Mission Central 
40718 Highway E 16
Mapleton, IA 51034
On the memo line, include:  Thews/Taiwan 





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Witness Mercy Life Together


Missionary · 5135 Coventry Ct · Davenport, IA 52807-3858 · USA

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