Life was FULL ON at the University of the Nations / YWAM Kona. While it took time to adjust to this many people and ahem… noise, it was really rad to be surrounded by so many amazing people & experience doing life together! We had heard about YWAM Kona for so many years and we couldn’t believe we’d actually be living there for a season.
What’s life there like? It’s hot and sunny everyday. And every building is open-air style. On base, you’re living outside most of the day. It’s hard not to be happy, with all that vitamin D. There is always someone to talk to or someone to pray for you. It’s common to see people praying together at any point in the day, at any random place around campus. Meals are in a huge group. Corporate worship gatherings happen on average 3 times a week as a base. There is a prayer room you can pop into at any time. You’re surrounded by amazing people with vision and heart. From new students from around the world, to the seasoned pioneers who helped start the base. To inspiring lecturers and well-known names. All over base are new moms, seasoned moms. There are kids everywhere, attending the base schools or kids-based DTS’s while their parents are staffing or students themselves. Sparrow made to many new little friends! It’s really like living in a thriving, busy village. Here are snapshots from our time on base!
The wider Tribe community here at Kona has put on several fundraisers while we were here. Read more about them in the captions.
The Tribe & Restorers DTS worked together to raise money for a missionary’s furlough. Rocky and Nimmy are based in India. Rocky is featured in the documentary, Blood Brother, & after many years of emotional and draining work working with HIV and AIDS children, the Tribe wanted to pay to give them a break. Fundraising was a success & his family spent one month here surrounded by all the positive goodness that can be found on base & in Hawaii.
Fundraising for the Tribe’s Ohana Fun Day we threw at the next door neighborhood.
Ohana Fun Day. The Tribe team’s aim was to spread aloha, help people meet their neighbors, and show others that you can do random acts of kindness for their neighbors.
Free mini manicure at the Ohana Fun Day
Students serving the locals a meal at Ohana Fun Day
ROCKY & NIMMY of DOCUMENTARY, BLOOD BROTHER, VISIT
Rocky & Nimmy Bratt joined the Tribe family for a few weeks to take a break from their missionary work in India. Rocky met Nimmy when he volunteered at an AIDS/HIV orphanage near her town. He was featured in the documentary, Blood Brother. Here he is sharing with some of the Tribe staff.
Rocky Bratt (left) signing his photo books to raise funds for their work! (Documentary: Blood Brother) Link to trailer.
Helping Nimmy sell their photo books of their work in India!
Rocky sharing at an open night about his and Nimmy’s work in India.
OTHER TRIBE INVOLVEMENTS
We joined a panel of married couples to share about relationships with the Restorer’s DTS on campus.
Tribe staff hangouts!
Noah facilitated Europe Night, where our Norwegian neighbors shared about all the amazing work they are doing in Norway and around Europe in the area of politics, media and business.
Matt & Noah sharing with Tribe staff about the new Tribe website & how it will connect & equip lifestyle missionaries around the globe. Good work Noah!!
LIFE AROUND THE BASE & KONA
Sparrow and I have had a lot of time together to explore the base and Hawaiian flora and fauna.
Amy and I really connected during her month stay on base. She and I know each other from New Zealand, at our YWAM Oxford base. I was so thankful to have an instant friend when I arrived who was available to hang out at any point, because she wasn’t tied to any school or responsibility. She is helping lead an Oxford DTS and was on furlough, recovering from some health issues. It was a great time of mutually encouraging one another.
Co-founder of YWAM, Darlene Cunningham, shared with the whole base about being free to be yourself in ministry and embracing your own gifts, not longing for the gifts of others.
It was an honour to listen to Darlene Cunningham share at the mom’s group! Photo by Tasha Hakeem
Kate’s been helping with Sparrow’s preschool & has enjoyed getting to know the moms and kids! Six nationalities represented (and a few kids missing from this photos.)
Meals were held here at the new cafeteria, lanai style! Gorgeous!
Monday & Friday nights were ministry nights. Loved the worship & prayer time!
Sparrow made so many amazing little missionary friends!
Listening to Dean Sherman’s lecture.
Selfie with Todd White. To save him time doing selfies with 100s of students… Everyone get up and take a pic!
Todd White was on base for a week sharing his heart with the students.
Without a car, we were reliant on the kindness of others and reliant on our own two feet! We often walked the 2 mile round trip into town and enjoyed the sights and sounds of local food, markets and cafes.
A Thursday night base-wide gathering. On a base of 1,000 or so people (students, staff, visitors, speakers, mission builders, etc.), there are huge gatherings for worship, guest speakers and meals.
So many people crossed our paths in three months, including this amazing Norwegian family. The girls got along so well!
Our former MCX student headed to Kona for a short season while he waited to renew his New Zealand visa. He is working as a mission builder here before he returns to Christchurch to work with us! He lived with us for many months and housesat for us. He’s become one of Sparrow’s many uncles!
Borrowed a car to catch the sunset! Yes, did I mention we were carless?
Supporting the Fiji Outreach Team
Initial Tribe meeting to help organize a Fiji relief team for the Winston Typhoon.
Helping the Fiji outreach team sell baked goods to raise money!
Goodbyes are hard!
My friend Haley is heading up this awesome team & taking her four boys with her! Homeschool!
Sending them out!
Goodbye Fiji Team!
Kate’s highlight: Experiencing the “heavenly” culture & atmosphere of the base. She also enjoyed the season of growing in God and receiving personal breakthrough.
Noah’s highlight: Being productive and working in team. Spending quality time with Tribe friends & partners from around the globe. Being in the thick of where Tribe core is and feeling we’re a part of a bigger team.
Sparrow’s Highlight: Living next door to a new Norwegian friend (a darling little girl). They didn’t speak the same language but were so adorable to watch play together. Sparrow also gained confidence with swimming during this trip.
Noah continues to work with the Tribe from afar and will return to the base in September for the next Bonfire gathering. As mentioned in the Mail Chimp update, he is helping run a Tribe Leadership Camp in August in Norway. In the meantime, Kate has been editing a Tribe Lifestyle Missionary Devotional that will be available later this year.
Thanks for catching up on our time with The Tribe!