Visit to Pittsburgh and Ambridge

We just got back from a 9-day deputation and discernment trip. I’ve blogged about the the first third of the trip already (“Unplanned Canadian Vacation”).

Our next stop was Pittsburgh, where we took the kids to the Carnegie Science Center. There they enjoyed various hands-on demos and displays, including the obligatory liquid nitrogen demonstration. Naomi impressed the crowd with a little of her Mars Hill Academy science memory, reciting the temperature at which water freezes in Celsius and Fahrenheit. Hosanna got picked to participate in one of the demonstrations:

Hosanna is on the right of three children waiting to receive a very, very cold marshmallow that has just been dipped in liquid nitrogen, so that she can blow smoke out of her mouth. Ezekiel and Isaiah can be seen in the audience, on the left side of the picture.

After the demo, we spent some time admiring the incredible miniature railroad and village, which is over 80 feet long and 30 feet wide and full of replicas of real Pennsylvania buildings.

There was a robot exhibit, where Hosanna met R2D2:

Ezekiel competed with another robot that was programmed to shoot basketballs:

Hosanna enjoyed the gigantic version of Milton Bradley’s “Operation” game in a display about the human body. Here she is wearing about 4 stethoscopes.


Both Isaiah and Hosanna would have been happy to spend hours at the water table.

Near the end of the visit, Ezekiel and I went down onto the USS Requin, a sonar picket submarine from WW II. The overall impression was that it is cramped and uncomfortable aboard a sub.

Naomi almost managed to escape from being captured on camera, because she dashed so quickly from one exhibit to another.

After visiting the science center, we spent three days at the Society of Anglican Missionaries and Senders headquarters in Ambridge. We learned a lot in the various workshops, and SAMS staff gave us some friendly interviews about our background, theology, and family life. It was a fruitful and productive time with some remarkable people who are dedicated to furthering the success of Anglican missions. We look forward to working with them.

I didn’t take very many photos in Ambridge. One thing that did catch my eye was this unintentionally humorous sign:


No, it doesn’t mean a cheap graveyard. The town of Economy was a 19th century settlement by the the Rapp family’s Harmony Society. It was disrupted when one Bernhard Müller led a third of the denizens away. Apparently, they were mostly young men and women who were at odds with the society’s commitment to celibacy!

As a result of our time in Ambridge, we are now official candidates with SAMS-USA, and we have updated our support page to let you know how to direct donations through SAMS.


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