Sometimes we have things planned in our calendar for so long that we can’t cancel due to weather...
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Improving Security for OM

August 2019 Newsletter

Dear Friend,
Bouldering at Rydal Caves in the Lake District

Sometimes we have things planned in our calendar for so long that we can’t cancel due to weather. Or we’re expecting others to come with us, or we paid a deposit and don’t want to lose our money. One weekend in June, our family went to Grasmere in the Lake District to enjoy a picnic with other local homeschooling families who are inspired by the philosophy and work of Charlotte Mason, a Victorian educator who spent her life in the Lake District.

We also had a camping trip planned for that weekend.

Once the weekend arrived, the weather forecast showed rain all weekend. The other families, except one, changed their plans. I suppose you could say we have become English because our family decided to go for a walk anyway. It was wet at first, but as we went on, the rain cleared off. The afternoon was beautiful, and the children got to explore some beautiful caves before going to our campsite to set up camp before more rain came. We tried not to let the weather stop us from having a good time, and we stayed (mostly) dry. We made memories, and Asher and Eva Joy now ask when they’ll see their new friends again.

A lesson about our Solar System. Everyone gets involved!
Chrysti and the children went on a field trip to the Scottish National Gallery in Edinburgh

Our lives are busy. We're homeschooling, tending our allotment, and leading our team in Carlisle and the IT Infrastructure team. In July we hosted our annual 4th of July barbecue at our home, and we celebrated Ellis's 2nd birthday.

We discovered our family is getting promoted to another level of “busy” in the coming months as we anticipate the arrival of another baby in January. We’re blessed in the busyness, so long as we remember to take time for ourselves as individuals and as a family.

Happy 2nd Birthday, Ellis!

Leon's Leadership Roles

I have two leadership roles and am working to bring clarity in what we are attempting to achieve. I am excited to be co-leading our IT Infrastructure team.

Our stated purpose is to empower the OM missionaries to create vibrant communities of Jesus followers among the least reached by aiding collaboration and access to information. Our focus over the next 6 months is to improve security in our organisation. We have various initiatives to increase our security measures in OM, but the biggest one is to add multi-factor authentication (MFA) to our IT systems. MFA is something you know (password) and something you have (6-digit number texted to me.)

Why MFA you may ask? Is that type of security not in the realms of banks only? The answer is no. Our work among least reached peoples means we are targets for hacks by extremist groups and governments. OM has already implemented MFA to beef up our money transfer request process due to successful criminal attacks to transfer money. We are rolling it out to the rest of the organisation by the end of this year.

Watch to see our July in 1-second snippets
The clarity for our team has come about from a 3-day training session we had up in Glasgow. We worked with organisational health consultants that specialise in build healthy, high performing leadership teams. The Table Group (their founder Patrick Lencioni wrote the popular book 5 Dysfunctions of a Team) ran the training for a couple dozen Christian charities and gave us tools to be better as a team. Since returning home, I have tried to teach the concepts through a series of devotions to our Carlisle team.

As a family we discussed travelling to the US this year, but we felt that it would be too disruptive as a family so close to our visit 18 months ago. Instead we shall travel to the US next summer and Leon will make a 2 week visit to the US in September. He would love to share about our ministry and will be very focused on increasing our financial support to meet our increased financial expenses.

Prayer Points

  1. The MFA rollout has run into a technical roadblock. Pray for our team to have creativity and wisdom to know how to move forward so that we can increase security.
  2. Please pray for the pregnancy to go as smooth as possible. Chrysti's midwives and doctors are taking extra precautions due to our history of high-risk pregnancies. We see specialist doctors in Newcastle in September.
  3. More opportunities to share with our increasing social circle about our faith in Christ.
God Bless,
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