I realized from some responses to my blog that many of my potential readership did not know that I am going to Viet Nam, or why, or what the MCC is! So maybe a bit more info is in order? I will keep it relatively brief, so as to not bore anyone, and include some links for the extra-enthusiastic researcher.
The MCC is the missions/outreach organization of the Mennonite Church (for my Dutch friends--it's like the Mennonite version of the CRWRC). In line with the Mennonite tradition, the MCC has a particularly strong focus on social justice and peacemaking. The SALT (Serving and Learning Together) program is a branch of the MCC designed specifically for younger people (18-27 years old). It works with MCC branches in various countries to place participants into 11-month service assignments, often partnering with non-MCC organizations.
According to the website,
The program seeks to further:
-International goodwill and understanding through experiencing life outside of one’s cultural, economic and social milieu
-International reconciliation and peace-building by encouraging participants to act as bridge-builders between their home and host communities
-Personal commitment to the world-wide church via participation and sharing in the life of Christian communities around the world
-Participants’ spiritual, personal and professional growth
During my time in Hanoi, I will be working full time as a manuscript editor at the Gioi, Viet Nam's foreign language publishing house. I will live with a Vietnamese host family. I will make my best attempt to learn Vietnamese. I will try new food (I hear they eat dog). I will (hopefully) perfect my badminton skills (apparently tennis and badminton are very popular there). I will learn about Vietnamese history from the Vietnamese perspective. I will form new relationships. I will learn new ways to love and be loved.
I think Gerard Manly Hopkins describes my mission better than I will ever be able to:
I say more: the just man justices;
Keeps grace: that keeps all his goings graces;
Acts in God's eye what in God's eye he is —
Christ. For Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men's faces.
links for more info: