I returned to Italy on Tuesday, after spending several wonderful days in France and Geneva, Switzerland with the Glass family! I had the most awesome time! I was amazed at the beauty of Switzerland and France – wow! The colors of the trees, the Alps, Lake Geneva … so breathtakingly beautiful! I took a ton of pictures of everything I saw … but unfortunately I don’t have them to share with you. My last night there, I accidentally deleted all my pictures. L All I have to say is, God knows exactly what tools we need to sanctify us. J I will try my best to make things interesting without pictures – maybe my thousand words can be worth a picture? J
First of all, here’s the Glass family – James (13, even though he’s gigantically tall!), Meg, and John. They have two other kids who are away at school – Kimberly is attending a missionary high school in Germany and John William is at Masters.
I arrived in Geneva, Switzerland around 5 in the afternoon on Thursday, after a 7 hour train ride. Meg Glass picked me up and we crossed the border into France and went to their home. They literally live like 7 minutes from the Swiss border, and their church and ministry are in Geneva.
It was so cool to see their home and ministry, after having a class with John at TMC entitled “Missionary Life and Experience,” when they were home on furlough last year. I’ve heard so much about their church and the work they’re doing! John is the chaplain for Geneva’s hockey team, and I got to go to a hockey game on Thursday night! That was so fun! For several years, I’ve actually wanted to go to a hockey game, so it was pretty cool to go to my first game in Geneva! Hockey is different here than in the States – they are not allowed to fight as much here. During the game, several pucks went out of the rink (I don’t know hockey terminology – is it called a rink? Because it’s not a field, is it?) and the Glass’ son, James, got me one! Here’s a picture of it (the logo got warn off from being played with):
On Friday, Meg took me to Calvin’s Cathedral and the Reformation Wall – so cool! Ok, so Calvin’s Cathedral was a Catholic Church. But then the people decided to do away with Catholicism and bring in Protestantism. So Switzerland is a “Protestant” country. When they kicked the Catholics out, this cathedral became a protestant church, and John Calvin became the pastor. There’s also a little chapel nearby in which John Calvin taught theology. There is a plaque in the cathedral commemorating the Protestants kicking the Catholics out. This plaque is in Latin and there is another plaque underneath it which is an explanation in French. The French one is not a translation of the Latin one though. The Latin one actually calls Catholics the anti-Christ! Guess you can understand why it’s not translated! It was amazing to see this and think of the history of our faith which took place there! The Reformation Wall is a huge wall on one end of a park, not too far from Calvin’s Cathedral. It gives a timeline of the events of the Reformation and shows how it spread throughout the world. I wish I could give better details, but I don’t remember it all. I took pictures, but I don’t have those to show you and help me remember things. J If you want to see pictures, check out this website for Calvin’s Cathedral: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/switzerland/geneva-cathedral.htm. For the Reformation Wall, check this out: http://www.sacred-destinations.com/switzerland/geneva-reformation-monument.htm. Also a highlight of this day: Starbucks!!!When I stepped off the train in Geneva, I saw a couple guys with clear cups and green straws and I thought to myself, “Self, could this really be? Could they really be drinking Starbucks?!” And sure enough … I asked the Glass’ if there was Starbucks here and they said there were 3! So I enjoyed a tall double mocha macchiato for about $6 (yes, you thought Starbucks was expensive in the States? Think again!). It was heavenly. J
Saturday we hung out at home and I helped John and James with yard work. It was pretty fun (and funny!). Sunday there was a Bible Study at the Glass’ home. They are in the process of starting a new church, which officially starts meeting next Sunday, so I missed it my one week. This Bible Study was awesome though! Everyone was so welcoming and kind. Lots of people spoke English, which was great. I was quite lost though in the French service. J I loved getting to meet these people and see the Glass’ church! So exciting! Afterward we had a potluck, which was a lot of fun.
On Monday, John dropped me off at the tram and I went into Geneva and toured around. I had a blast doing this! I walked around downtown Geneva and Lake Geneva. I enjoyed “shopping” – everything is very expensive so I didn’t buy much! I enjoyed one more Starbucks – a grande extra hot caramel macchiato – oh so good!
And then came Tuesday, time for me to return. I think I shared the main highlights of my trip. Oh, I forgot one. On the train to Geneva, I sat near a Brazilian man who spoke some English and I got to witness a little to him. He agreed to read whatever part of the Bible I recommended to him and asked for my e-mail address to e-mail me when he’d read it! Pray that he will read God’s Word and that the Lord would begin to work in his heart!
Here’s one final picture – it’s the view from the room I stayed in. So beautiful!