Category Archives: NYC

What a Fall Season We have Had!

What a Fall season we have had!

It has been a crazy Fall season with schools starting classes and meeting new students and campus outreaches happening across the Capital Region of New York.  There is so much to thank God for!  This email update features both the stories of Steve and Rich who are two guys we have ministered to both in New York City and here in the Capital Region, respectively.  You can download our newsletter by clicking on the image below.

September 2010 Newsletter August 2010 Newsletter

Please Pray for Ellen’s talk at the Health Conference at the College of St. Rose

We hope you will pray for Ellen’s talk she will be sharing with St. Rose students on Wednesday (11/3) morning (as mentioned in the prayer requests in the September letter, see link above).

A Fixer upper… a personal update…

God has blessed us with a house with personality! We knew what we were getting into, thank the Lord, (since we rented out the downstairs apartment in our house first before buying) and yet the learning process for painting, scraping, and installing doors and windows to replace drafty ones (while tax credits can still be obtained) is a journey full of surprises, sweat, and hard work.  We want to thank so many people who have been able to help us work on it and all that but also thank the many more people who prayed for us while we went through the first stage of changes in our home.  God loves us through people like you!

Ellen looking through new door we installed

God Speed,



How do we get to Heaven? “By doing the best [you] can to lead a good life”????

How do we get to Heaven? “By doing the best [you] can to lead a good life”????

Not quite. As you will read this month in our New York City Summer Project Newsletter’s page 2 highlighting our Campus Track, our friend Max didn’t quite understand God’s grace for us.  Max thought he simply had to do his best to earn a place in Heaven.  The truth is that Jesus has already earned it all by going to the Cross for Max.

We’re Back Home in Albany!

Our summer has been quite an adventure.  We were leading 21 students in the Campus Track out of 60 or so total on the entire project for the 5 weeks that they were in NYC.  We teamed up with the other segments of our project including the Arts Track, Bridges Track (International Student ministry), Epic Track (Ministry to Asian-Americans), and Inner City Track (ministry to homeless and children in NYC).  Of course this diversity of ministry is to be expected in a city so diversely populated!  The truth is that there are so many more areas of ministry in the city that I wouldn’t have time to mention them all here if I tried.  Please enjoy our project’s newsletter attached.  Our Campus Track is featured on page 2.  Ellen and I are hiding behind the word “Campus” at the top of the page!

Page 2 of NYC Summer Project 2010 Newsletter

Our Continuing Adventure: Home Ownership and Fall Semester Planning!

It's Good to be home in the Neighborhood!

Our adventure picked back up again only 2 days after we returned from our 6 weeks in New York City when we bought a 2-family home in Albany!  We have been working on it quite a bit and reconnecting with supporters and planning for the fall outreaches coming up ever since!  We have enjoyed the Albany weather since coming home. It was much hotter in New York City!  We will update you on some more personal stories from our work in the city with our next newsletter coming soon!

With the help of many friends and family, we have finished both phase 1 and 2, as we call them, of patching up cracked walls and moving out the kitchen cabinets and repainting all the walls and cabinet doors!  Phase 2 has been sanding and refinishing the floors.  We will be moving in within a couple days (though the work in the kitchen and bathroom is not complete yet).  Attached are some pictures of our new place (where we rented the downstairs apartment for 1 year until last month, ironically)

Our New Home

Ellen and a Friend painting

John Scraping old floor up in Kitchen after cabinets removed

A Big Thank YOU!

You may remember our prayer request in our last online post from July 1:

“You may have read about our project in NYC this summer and meant to pray or meant to give but haven’t taken the opportunity.  You can partner with us today by praying and giving financially.  We are trusting God to bring in the remaining 30% (or $1500) in the next couple weeks that we need to serve to our fullest in New York City.”

Well GOD PROVIDED! Only a couple days short of 2 weeks after our last post, a generous donor filled the gap we had between where we stood and the need we had in NYC.  We are so grateful and thankful to have people and churches like you who pray and people and churches like you who give to make sure that the work continues in this ministry.  We know first hand how so many people heard the good news and others began their walk with Jesus for the first time because of what you did so far away.  We are honored to be partnered with people like you.

Fall Outreaches require God’s people to (Please) PRAY

Please pray as we plan out the details of these critical Fall outreaches and launches on the campuses of the greater Capital Region.  Specifically, all the major schools in the area start on 8/30 except for Siena and a couple others.  We will start most outreach events within the first few days of classes.  One early Freshmen outreach is already planned on 8/27 and our Kickoff gathering event for our upperclass Real Life students is the same day and 8/28 as well.  Our first large group event called City Wide is on 9/2.  Please pray that God works in our student leaders to come to the kickoff event in force and to galvanize around the cause of Christ in reaching the lost, especially focusing on Freshmen, who are very very open to the possibility of connecting with Real Life students and with God (last year 50% of UAlbany students and 40% of RPI students surveyed indicated they were open to talking with other students about how their life purpose and knowing God go together).

God Speed,
John and Ellen

1st FULL day in NYC

So.. we made it! Today was definitely a full day! We did a staff orientation and then broke up into groups and did some get familiar to the city stuff. The only sad part was that John and I split up into different groups, but we each made some new friends! You may remember that I’m a statistic person.. I thought I’d share some with you. First you should know We’re living in Manhattan at Herold Square, which is literally next door from the Gap and across the street from Macy’s and down the road from the Empire State building! Lots of things happening. To prove this, you may appreciate that I had to sleep with earplugs last night to actually get to sleep! It’s been an adjustment, but one we’re excited about. We have a few more days before the students arrive… which is nice; maybe by then I’ll figure out more of the city.. maybe not!? I did however right away find a Trader Joes- 2 stops on the metro! It’s the little things that make me SO happy!

Here are some statistics you may like:

Over 6.5 million people commute into Manhattan each work day, of which 4.9 million ride the Metro!
If 6.5 million people held hands end to end (without stretching out much!) it would take them all the way from Alaska to the southern tip of Florida!!

There are 468 subway stations and 31,180 turnstiles!

The BUSIEST subway station annually is Timesquare and there are 10 different train lines coming into this station alone! (part of my orientation included figuring out how to get there from Grand Central Station.. this was actually not hard!:-)

I hope to keep you as updated as I can! Please pray that we get a handle on the Subway here.. at times it’s a little overwhelming for me! WOW would you pray for our group of about 120 students and staff to make an impact on these people daily?

We appreciate all of you and are grateful to know there are people praying for us as we step out in faith to live in NYC this summer on project here. Hopefully I’ll upload some pictures of our apartment.. believe it or not.. I think the room is actually bigger than ours at home! (for those that have seen our apartment you know our room is only about 11×11! so it’s not saying too much!) 🙂

OH- and if you watch the Today Show.. look out for me! I may just get up at 5AM to go with some crazy staff women! Not sure how I can make it through a long day after that.. but I suppose that’s why there is starbucks on every corner right?!

Where can you combine great walking shoes, crowded and diversely populated streets, and spiritual conversations?

… CITY, that is.

Ellen and I will be leaving in two weeks for our summer assignment in New York City, where our Summer Mission Project will take place.  Thirty or more students will join us from Campus Crusade student movements all over the country to minister to college students and people who live in New York City.  We are excited to work and live in the city for 6 weeks, teaming up with people and churches who love the Lord Jesus and coming along side the spiritually lost and hurting.  Attached is a 2-PAGE description of our Summer Mission Project and we know you will be excited about it as well.  If you’d like to help us by praying that would be awesome. If you’d like to help us by supporting us to go financially, that would be awesome too!  You can do so by going to

God Speed,

New York City Summer Project 2010

November 2009: Crossing Cultures in New York City!

Dear Friends,

November was a really “crazy” busy month! We seemed to be somewhere different every weekend, or at least part of each weekend! With so much happening on campuses in our area in addition to our Fall Northeast Regional Staff Conference, The “Cross ’09” event, and Thanksgiving weekend out of town visiting family and friends in New Hampshire, it made for an eventful month, to say the least!  We are blessed and privileged to partner with you to see ministry happen to people in so many ways.  This month’s update focuses on the Cross ’09 event where we received training and experienced a little more of what it means to cross into another culture that is quite different from our own.  We ministered to students on two city campuses.  We found out at our regional Staff Conference that we will be headed back to NYC for this summer for our summer project assignment! We are excited about that and all that God will be doing there.  We hope you are enjoying this Christmas season leading up to the celebration of our Savior’s birth and God’s incarnation on Earth. We are so grateful he came to live among us!!  We hope you enjoy this month’s newsletter!

Merry Christmas to All!

John and Ellen

November 2009

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