Calvary in Ghana

Most of us go after The Good Life through wealth, position or power – but none of that leads to the life God truly wants for us. Join us this Lent in paying forward The Good Life for students in rural Ghana, where education is the primary means to escape extreme poverty. Just $80 supports a full year. Together, let's make a difference in the lives of 40 students in 40 days!

God is doing great things through our partners at GlobeServe Ministries West Africa. Your financial gifts will help provide scholarships to students in rural Ghana. 



In June of 2023, a group of Calvary travelers visited several sites in Ghana. Check below for updates about the trip! Thank you for your ongoing support and prayers. 

JUNE 18, 2023 

Sent from the team on Sunday night, MN time:

Hello! After a long day of traveling we made it to Ghana! For the 6 coming from Minneapolis, it was a smooth trip with a 3 hour layover in Amsterdam. We enjoyed our conversation and time together. Papa Jim and Emily met up in New York and took a direct flight.  

As we landed in Ghana, customs was easy and all of our bags arrived. We were greeted by Pearl, Judith and Judith's beautiful 4 month old daughter named Evenunye meaning "the Lord has favored." Many children also have an English name, hers is Audrey. As it was late we headed to our hotel where we are tucked in for the night. 

Tomorrow we fly to Tamale and on to Yendi. You'll see we will get more and more remote. To reach people not yet reached sometimes you have to go far. It will be a fun day getting to know Ghana and our Ghanaian partners. 

Thanks for your support and prayers. All is well here!

Please pray for the doors for us to share medical information and the gospel will be opened. For a good night sleep to overcome any jetlag so we are ready to go tomorrow. 

JUNE 19, 2023 

Hello Prayer Partners,

We've had an adventure of a day! There was a mixup with our airline tickets from Accra to Tamale so Janelle and Sawyer went early with our mission partners Judith and Pearl. So, they left by 7 to the airport to fly with Tamale. Angie went with them to ensure they all boarded ok. When they got to Tamale they headed to Pastor Sam and Jonhild's house to wait for the rest of the team. The other six of us and Jonhild left at 10 to do the same trip. 
When we all arrived in Tamale we headed to Sam and Jonhild's home here in the North. Olivia made us a large lunch of Jollof Rice, Spaghetti, Grilled Chicken, Mango, Bananas, and Fried Plantains. It was delicious. After lunch we traveled to Yendi, a rather remote area of Ghana we will be in for the next few days. We stopped to get some Fan Ice, a kind of ice cream, to purchase some fabric from a vendor to have dresses made from our friends at the Vocational school, and some sweet bread that tastes like animal crackers. We took in the sites and remarked at the culture.
After we arrived at our Yendi hotel, we checked in and spent some time together as a team in devotions and reflecting on our day. Papa Jim shared a devotion based on Philippians 4. Reminding us that God has got us in this whole adventure. We remarked on how fun it is to get to know our Ghanaian partners and prepared to visit our first village tomorrow. We are excited to see what God is doing.
Prayer request include: our village visit tomorrow, that our hearts are open and the village is receptive to our arrival. 
Thanks for your prayers, they are sustaining. 
Kindly, Sawyer, Annika, Jim, Julie, Janelle, Liz, Emily, and Angie

JUNE 20, 2023 

Hello Prayer Partners!
The power in our hotel is intermittent as well as the internet so we are working to get these emails out in a timely manner. We apologize for delays. 
We started this morning early with a delicious breakfast then headed into the van to drive to the village. Emily started us off with a devotion from Mark 14 where a woman anoints Jesus with a jar of expensive oil. She talked about how this woman was in Awe of who Jesus was and this anointing was in response to that. Emily encouraged us to look for the Awe in today..... Awe came. 
The ride to the Baniyili village was about an hour. It rained this morning so there were a lot of puddles and washout. We enjoyed the sites along the way and played a word game amongst ourselves. One where you say a word and then someone has to come up with a song that has that word. When we arrived at the village we were invited to the chief's palace. It's a very formal procedure to have an audience with the chief. We entered and were welcomed. We did introductions and explained to the chief what we intended to do. He prayed with is and we headed out to the community. It's rare to be invited into a chief's palace and we were honored. 
Julie and Angie worked with the adults today and Jim, Janelle, Annika, Sawyer, Liz, and Emily went to work with the kids. With the adults, Angie preached a message of love and how we are more the same than different and the Julie taught about the dangers of Malaria and how to prevent it in their community. We invited some volunteers to help us with a skit. We laughed and connected. Following that we gave the adults dewormer and distributed mosquito nets. 
On the kids side, Papa Jim coordinated off an area to distribute dewormer. Emily and Pearl gave out dewormer,  Sawyer and Liz marked each kids hand with a sharpie cross to indicate they had received it, Annika gave each kid a sucker to wash it down, and Janelle kept kids occupied with coloring sheets following. When all the 270 kids got their dewormer we brought out soccer balls, bubbles, and Frisbees to play and enjoy them. So many smiles, it was so much joy! We sang Jesus loves me and the Hokey Pokey with them. It was amazing.
At the end of our time with them the village leaders gave us 2 Guinea Fowl as a token of gratitude. We waved joyous goodbyes and were in Awe of our day.
We came back to Yendi and it was Market day! So we took in all the sites and smells of a day in the market. Market day is every 5 days and in the market you can get everything you need from shoes, to soap, to a chicken, or underwear. It was fun to see how it all worked. We came back to the hotel where Olivia made us a wonderful dinner of chicken,  beans, rice, friend plantains. Sawyer bought a mango in the market so Olivia taught him how to cut it. Pastor Sam, the founder of GlobeServe, joined us tonight and gave us a presentation on the mission God has called GlobeServe to do. We are honored to be part of that vision. 
Thank you for your sustaining prayers. We are so grateful. Tomorrow we will do similar work in another village. 
Prayer request: fornus to continue to be in Awe of God's work everywhere. For hearts to be ready for the village visit tomorrow. For good rest tonight (and maybe the power (for the AC) to stay on). 
It's all an adventure!
Janelle, Liz, Julie, Emily, Annika, Sawyer, Jim, and Angie

JUNE 21, 2023 

Hello Prayer Partners! What an amazing day! Liz started with devotions all about God's timing. How everything happens within a season quoting Ecclesiastes 3:1 and Micah 7:7. It was a prophetic message for what was to come. As we entered the Joji village we, again, were invited into the chief's palace. This chief was a humble man and spoke softly. We remarked on his kind nature and welcoming spirit. He welcomed us and told us of this villages need for water in their village. 
When it was time to meet with the community we split again into 2 groups. This time Angie and Liz met with the adults and the other 6 headed out with the kids. All went beautifully, as we gave out dewormer to the kids, miraculously we only had 3 left over. (If you received these emails last year... after deworming we had only 3 left then too). Janelle and Emily colored with the kids, Sawyer and Annika gave out little wooden cars and candy, Jim and Julie distributed dewormer.  Afterwards on the adults side they thanked us for coming and for the mosquito nets and one woman stood up to address us. She said that where they are they felt forgotten. That no one cared and they were abandoned from the world. But then we came, and they knew God remembered them. It was humbling. After all was given out Sawyer, Annika, and Emily played soccer with about 100 kids. A huge day in the village. 
There are a few reasons we do this work, and that GlobeServe invites us to join them in the work. 

1. The gift is given with no expectation on the community. We do this because in Matthew 25 Jesus says when you do this to the least, the lost, the last, and the lowest, you do this to me. We are honored for the opportunity and our friends here are healthier because of it.

2. It opens doors of friendship for the missionaries who serve in these communities. These are local people who GlobeServe have trained and sent into the mission field in areas near the communities they live. Essentially,  neighboring these folks, giving them the chance to hear the gospel as their neighbors.  Showing them love through actions and words when the opportunity provides.

3. It brings further legitimacy to the missionaries work. They aren't just neighbors but also fully trained and commissioned. It's a powerful strategy we first see in the book of Acts. :) 
After we left the village we headed back to Yendi but we found out that a Calvary well was being drilled just outside Yendi in Bakpaba. So we went! It was awesome to watch the process. There were maybe 80-100 kids there so we made friends by bringing out another two soccer balls. Sawyer, Annika, and Emily played another round. The rest of us held hands and played with the smaller kids. Time seemed to slip away as we watched and celebrated the well being drilled, holding kids, and watching soccer. The timelessness that Liz talked about made itself apparent tonight. Before we knew it four hours went by, the well drillers hit water and it sprayed high in the sky and we watched as kids, who will benefit from this well, who will be healthier from this well. It was humbling to know from funds raised at Calvary in March, to water erupting today to watch God on the move. 
Later... whatever time it was... we went back to the hotel for a delicious peanut soup with rice made by Olivia.  We had game night together after that and laughed at the incredible day. 
Tomorrow we head to a graduation ceremony at the Vocational School. We are so excited.  
Please pray for: the beautiful Joji community that they will receive a well also. (All 9 of Calvary's wells are already committed to communities in this area). The 19 graduates of the Vocational school, and GlobeServe's mission.
All are so good here and we are humbled, timeless, and grateful!
Liz, Emily, Annika, Papa Jim, Julie, Janelle, and Angie

JUNE 22, 2023 

Hello all! Another amazing day! We started with devotions from Janelle reminding us to surrender to God's will on our lives, knowing that when we fear God has us. We hit rain as we headed for the village of Bonbung and we worried that it would effect our day. As we arrived into the village the rain stopped and we were grateful.  We started by visiting the chief's palace. Chief Uborr Dawini has been a friend of ours and a friend of GlobeServe for many years. He is a very forward thinking progressive chief whose vision for his village of 8000+ is all about education. We went in to visit him and we were welcomed into the village. After a conversation we went to the Carrie Mueller Vocational School. This school is named after Angie and Emily's grandma. 
Today was graduation day! 19 girls completed their education and their families and so many from the community were there to celebrate. There were volunteers to set up tents to keep people out of the sun, they were delayed because of the rain. So we took this as a chance to tour the school. The graduates had tables in two classroom displaying their work portfolios. Examples of different sewing and clothes making patterns covering each table along with a portfolio booklet. We had the chance to purchase some of their projects so we did! After that we went and toured the brand new Calvary dormitory! Its is 5 rooms, equipped with electricity and soon fans, a bathroom facility and all. This hostel will house nearly 100 girls as soon as it's outfitted with bunk beds, coming soon! It's a beautiful facility and the girls can't wait to live there. 
Now it was time for the graduation to start! We had introductions, speeches, and a prayer, everything you would expect but add DANCING! Liz and Annika jumped in on the fun. After that we were invited to present the diplomas as well as gifts of donated sewing machines (many from Calvary) to all the graduates.  It was a humble honor. After all of that Chief Dawini gave a speech. In his speech he said something that stuck with us... he said, "When you educate a man, you educate an individual.  But when you educate a woman, you educate a community. That's what we're doing here." It was powerful, many of us were moved to tears. 
After graduation concluded they had a dance right there. We stayed and danced for a while, Emily, Sawyer, Annika, and Janelle jumped in. Angie, Julie, and Jim watched. And Liz held babies. :) it was so much fun we didn't want to leave. We were gifted a goat (a huge gift) and some yams collected from the fathers of the graduates as a thank you. (Tears again). We named the goat Thursday. He got tied up to the top of the bus and we headed to our hotel, Tonight in Tamale. 
We headed to the art market, got a few souvenirs then to dinner and the hotel. We are tucked in for another day of adventure tomorrow. As we reflected with highs and lows at dinner there were many highs and only little lows. It was an awesome day. 
Tomorrow we will head to Mole National Park for a Safari on Saturday. We are looking forward to seeing some elephants. 
Will send you a note when we do. 
Thanks for your sustaining prayers. We can feel them. The emotion here is High as we witness God's love in palpable action. So much more to come!
Please pray: for the 19 graduates, for their teachers Nicholas, Emma, Seri, and Agnes, for the dorm to bless even more girls!
Kindly, Emily, Liz, Annika, Julie, Janelle, Jim, Sawyer, and Angie 

JUNE 23, 2023 

Hello all! We left the Zosimli hotel this morning to head to Mole National Park, Ghana's wildlife preserve. On the way here Annika led us in devotions reminding us about God in the adventure. About how God doesn't invite us into a safe life but one that is full of following God wherever life may take us. She reminded us that everyday "this is the day the Lord has made and we get to rejoice and be glad in it." 
Today was a day full of rejoicing and some downtime after (and before) some big days. As we drove to Mole we stopped by the oldest Mosque south of the Saharan desert. As we toured the mosque we learned of its founding and it has a fascinating history. Just Google "Ghana oldest mosque" and you can read all about it too. :) next we made it to the park. Papa Jim, Julie and Annika went swimming. Liz and Janelle read a book. Angie, Sawyer,  and Emily went for a run/walk. The whole time we all played with Princess, Pastor Sam's niece.  She's turning 7 on Monday and has a beautiful, funny spirit. She started off very shy and now she is the opposite,  wanting to be the center of attention. 
This evening we got to see some warthog in a field and a whole group of Babboons playing on a jeep. We watched the beautiful African sunset and enjoyed dinner together.  After dinner we played games and laughed and laughed and laughed. When we did Highs and lows, there was gratitude for the slower day and the time to recharge and see what God made. There were no lows. 
Tomorrow morning bright and early we are going for a Safari. There aren't any giraffes or rhinos here. There are lions but they are so far into the park we will never see them. Our Safari will likely include antelope, birds, warthog, baboons, and elephants.  We are excited.  
Thanks for all the prayers :)
Pray for: good weather tomorrow, those preparing the Saboba district convention on Sunday. 
In gratitude, 
Emily, Liz, Annika, Janelle, Jim, Julie, Sawyer, and Angie 

JUNE 24, 2023 

Hello Prayer Partners! What a fun day! We woke up really early and headed off on a safari. We traveled on top of jeeps that had benches welded to the roofs. We split into two jeeps because of the number of people we had. And off we went through the forest to see what animals we could see! On the way we saw Kob, a kind of antelope, baboons, warthogs, and birds. All of a sudden our jeeps slowed down and we pulled up to two bull elephants! We were able to climb down and observe them from under 25 feet. These beautiful gentle animals walk with a quiet you wouldn't imagine and demand respect with just their size. We were mesmerized.  After a while we took pictures, Liz took one that will for sure win her a ribbon at the fair. We climbed back on the jeeps and went further into the park. Before you knew it we were in a valley and we came upon another group of 8 elephants. We loved it. It was so cool to see. 
We headed up the valley back to the hotel and our second jeep ended up with hydraulic problems in a river/rocky area. It meant the jeep wouldn't go any further. As our guide called another jeep we began walking up the road. After about 20 minutes we were picked up by another jeep. When we got back to the ranger station our team was waiting for us. 
Next we had breakfast and Julie led us in a devotion based on Micah 6:8. In thinking about doing justice, loving kindness, and walking humbly. Today fit all of those things. We are humbled by the world that God created with the imagination for us to enjoy and take awe in it.  We enjoyed our breakfast and reflected on the animals we got to see. 
It came time for us to head back to Tamale. We made it back to the hotel and visited with our Ghanaian partners, Sam, Jonhild, Pearl, Princess, Judith, Audrey, and Olivia. We had dinner and made our plans for the district worship convention tomorrow. We are so excited to worship tomorrow morning and be with and encourage the community. At dinner we shared tears about how much joy we have experienced in the past week. We're overwhelmed by God's goodness.
Please pray: for Pastor Angie preaching tomorrow in Saboba, for us to have an impact to encourage the community, for continued joy.
We come to you tonight with intensely, humble, grateful hearts. We are rested and ready to serve tomorrow. 
Praying for you tomorrow too:
Emily, Janelle, Julie, Jim, Annika, Sawyer, Liz, and Angie

JUNE 25, 2023 

Hello Prayer Partners!
Hope your Sundays are incredible! Ours was!! Last night we received our hand made clothing from Emma, a teacher at the Vocational school. We wore our amazing, perfect outfits to church today. We left our hotel early this morning and headed to Saboba. Saboba is an area near the country of Togo. In fact, we drove through Togo, for about 5 minutes. (Does that count as another country?). Eight years ago as GlobeServe was expanding its mission, a missionary named Edward expanded the good news of Jesus in this area of the country and the Word took root. The church grew like wildfire and many churches were planted. Now these churches are well established church communities each with their own team of robust leaders. Today was their district convention. They gather seasonally from villages around the area to worship together. 
When we arrived there was already singing, dancing, and drums. It was spectacular.  First, the women danced together in a couple of lines that went in a circle. All with a symbiotic movement where they continued as one. To watch them sing and move together was awesome. Next, we heard a noise from behind where we were sitting and a group of men came in with branches and instruments in their hands and around their ankles noise makers. Some of them made with cans that had other metal rings attached to them. As the men gathered in the center circle they danced (barefoot) this impressive warrior dance. They shook their feet so fast the metal clanged together making an incredible rhythm. They danced together then took turns showing off their skills. We remarked at their movement and the fact that they were on this rocky ground with barefeet.  
Following the dancing was a time of song full dedication. A woman worship leader gathered in the middle of this 1000+ crowd and led them in a song that kind of sounded like a lament. Women and men bowed, kneeled on the ground, or held their arms to the sky with closed eyes and fervent prayer. You could feel the Holy Spirit palpable on your skin. Pastor Sam was called up to introduce Pastor Angie as the preacher. Angie talked about how we are not the light but we get to reflect the light and love of Jesus Christ and how everyone has a purpose in that. To shine the light and love of Jesus to all they meet. Preaching is a challenge because of needing to be interpreted into the local language every few words. The interpreter Joseph did an incredible job keeping up with Angie. Following, Sam reiterated Angie's points and brought the message home. Where are you reflecting the light and love of Jesus in your life?
An offering was collected and we can learn a lot about the way they do it. They place a bucket in the middle of the community and everyone (whether they give or not) brings a fist forward and puts it in the bucket as an offering. If you have money, you release it from your fist. If you have nothing to offer but yourself, you do the same. 
Next a group of student evangelists presented a request to the leaders of the church. These 10 leaders requested Bibles for their own study and to lead the other students in their high school to tell them about Jesus. Seriously, it was humbling to hear their commitment and their hearts. We promised to get them Bibles but it did make us think about how to get them more widely distributed in areas like this,  where it's not available.  Then we found out that there was a whole church community who had crossed a big river to get to church today. We applauded their commitment and honestly, had no idea how they were able to do that. This community does not yet have a church structure they still meet in homes or under trees and they would like help in building a church. 
After worship was over, we took some photos and said our gratitude and goodbyes to our new friends. Emily shared some crosses from Jerusalem with the 10 students of the evangelism team. Liz held baby Audrey. Janelle, Julie, and Annika had people remarking on their dresses. Papa Jim and Sawyer shook hands with village leaders. They gifted us with a goat (we named Sunday) and 2 guinea fowls as well as a huge pile of kasava (a kind of yam). We tied Sunday to the roof of the van and made our way down the road. 
We visited the GlobeServe center for International missions in Tamale before coming back to the hotel to have dinner with Sam, Jonhild,  Pearl, Judi, Olivia, Princess, and Audrey. We laughed and cried again.  It was an incredible day. Who knew 4.5 hours in church would feel so short. ;)
Tomorrow we will head south to Accra and then Adidome. Can't wait to tell you of our adventures.  
Prayers for: the evangelism team, Pastor Johnson who leads the Saboba district,  the new churches being planted that they are strengthened, and Pastor Johnsons wife whose father died this morning. 
With great gratitude, 
Emily, Sawyer, Annika, Julie, Liz, Janelle, Jim, and Angie

JUNE 26, 2023 

Hello all! Tonight we write from the city of Ho, Ghana. We started early this morning in Tamale. We woke up to an incredible thunderstorm which is so good for the farmers we met yesterday. We grabbed breakfast and headed to the airport.
We flew from Tamale to Accra. This flight is only about 45 minutes but if we were to drive it the trip would take nearly 24 hours because the roads are not good. In the rainy season (May-Nov) they are often washed out and have huge potholes. So we opted to fly.
In Accra we met Kwame our driver and we began our trip to Ho. It was a long bumpy road. In fact, Angie's smart watch logged over 7000 steps just from being in the bus. On the way we stopped at the GlobeServe farm. This farm includes acres of palm trees, oranges, mango, and corn. The products from this farm including the fruit and pressed Palm oil are sold at local markets and the proceeds help with the funding of GlobeServe ministries. The ministry is growing faster than its income can keep up so this supplements that. It's a beautiful farm with mature trees. It's fun to be there.
Following the farm we went to a Kinte Cloth factory. This is an ancient art of weaving that is still done in a traditional way using both your hands and feet.
We made the rest of our way to Hope Village. Hope Village was built with the same purpose as the Farm. To build income to support the ministry. It's a hotel built on a beautiful hill. It's one that any of you can stay at if you're ever in Ghana!
Janelle, Liz, and Annika took a ride this evening on a Yellow Yellow sometimes called a Tro Tro in other countries. It's a three wheeled vehicle used for transport. We went for dinner at Sky Plus a hotel at the top of the mountain near us and enjoyed the view and conversation among us and our GlobeServe partners. Sawyer led us in a devotion based on Acts 13. He talked about how sometimes God calls us when we are comfortable to move into the uncomfortable. Opposite what we might think, but this is when we grow.
We had dinner and talked together and asked more questions of our GlobeServe partners. We are so thankful for their spirit and their joy. We've learned so much from them and laughed a lot. There were tears shed at dinner thankful for our time together in joy and intentional community. It's so good to be the body of Christ.
We are grateful for your sustaining prayers.
Today please pray for: our visit to the preparatory school tomorrow, our flights home tomorrow night, Princess on her 7th birthday today.
In mutual ministry,
Liz, Emily, Janelle, Annika, Sawyer, Julie, Jim, and Angie

JUNE 27, 2023 

Hi Prayer Partners! We had a wonderful final day in Ghana. It started with yoga led by Emily in the gazebo at Hope Village. Then we had a great breakfast made by Mabel, Princess' mom. After that we packed up and said goodbye and headed to the GlobeServe Preparatory school.
As we drove up to the school dozens of school kids ran up to our van and greeted us with smiles and a couple hugs. We met the principal Jane and the associate principal Margaret and the accountant Ernest. After chatting with them for a bit we split up into groups of two and went into each classroom to teach the students how to make a cross necklace. We enjoyed our time there. The school has students from preschool to JHS 3, which is the equivalent to 9th grade. Some students board there on the 3rd floor. There are over 330 students enrolled in the school and it's been in existence for over 20 years. After our craft time we passed out dumdums and played games. It was so fun! The time to say goodbye came too early. We waved goodbye and headed down the road. 
But not that far... after about an hour the bus we were in overheated and quit working. We were stuck on the side of the road in a remote area. We sat there for a while and worried about making our plane.  We weren't sure what was going to happen when all of a sudden our GlobeServe team was able to locate a replacement bus. On the windshield of the new bus it had the words "Thank You Jesus"  which is exactly what we felt!
We unloaded all our luggage and piled it all into the Thank you Jesus bus. We loaded up in close quarters and headed through the traffic into Accra. We stopped at a shop to get some souvenirs and at another place to get dinner. We shared our favorite parts of the trip and what was so interesting was how everyone connected with something different. We all agree that it's been an amazing team and an incredible trip. We are grateful for the ways we saw God at work and each connected with something different. We will take back with us lots of memories, photos, and stories. We will take new friends and so much joy.  We are so thankful and humbled by this experience. 
We are at the airport now. Jim and Emily fly through JFK in New York and the other six of us fly through Amsterdam. We hugged our goodbyes and see you laters.  
Please pray for our travels home and for our friends at GlobeServe.  Will email when we have arrived.  
Thank you Jesus,
Liz, Annika, Janelle, Julie, Sawyer,  Jim, Emily, and Angie

JUNE 28, 2023 

Hi Sustaining Prayer Partners,
Well, here we are... all home at the end of an incredible missions trip. All travel was easy and without incident. 
We have a lot to process over the next few days/weeks. Watching God's movement in Ghana was humbling and inspires us to see and be part of that same movement at home. Everything from graduations that empower women,  to life-saving wells, to school kids looking for better. Thank you for being part of this team and praying for us. Please ask us lots of questions when you see us. We'd love the opportunity to talk about it. 
Going forward,  please continue to pray for GlobeServe ministries, for Pastor Sam, Jonhild, Pearl, Judi, and all there. If you have interest in one of the projects we talked about (wells, schools, churches, malaria prevention) or if you might be interested in serving in Ghana please reach out to Angie at  .  
We keep thinking of when Jesus said: "So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets." Thanks for being this for us. 
Pray that we get a chance to rest and recoup and then joyously join God in God's work. 
Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts!
Your partners in ministry, 
Julie, Liz, Emily,  Jim, Janelle, Sawyer,  Annika, and Angie