Monthly Archives: November 2013

Richard Stearns’s newest book

November 18, 2013 | Janie


You may have heard that World Vision President Richard Stearns followed up The Hole in Our Gospel, with yet another equally powerful work, Unfinished: Believing is Only the Beginning. Perhaps you have already read it. Or maybe you have wondered if his second book could possibly hold a candle to the first and be worth reading. And so, like me, you have put off getting your hands on a copy and taking the time to delve into it.

Don’t delay any longer! When I finally got around to digesting this book, I found chapter after chapter to be incredibly moving. If you want to have your heart remain soft to what’s important in life, and you desire to keep the needs of a hurting world front and center, you will want to read this book.

Check out comments like these at

Unfinished might just challenge everything you thought you understood about your Christian faith…If every Christian read this book and took it seriously, the world would never be the same again.”
—Bill Hybels, senior pastor Willow Creek Community Church

“Just when I’ve gotten comfortable with my faith, here comes Rich Stearns, reminding me what matters and who God loves and why…Just when I dare think my work is done, Rich reminds me that we are just getting started.”
—Max Lucado, pastor and best-selling author

There is also a DVD-based study available for small groups.



Knitters Unite!

November 14, 2013 | Janie

Fight poverty with a ball of yarn!

Three caps for newborns knit for kids

I may lose a few men with this post, but if you like to create with yarn and needles, this entry is for you. For those who like to knit (or crochet), World Vision has a great opportunity called Knit for Kids. Be sure to check out this site because you will love it. Click on their video for added inspiration! Even if you don’t knit, but would like to learn how, move your mouse over the words “Get Involved,” and you will find super simple patterns for a baby cap and baby blanket that are easy enough for a beginning knitter. There’s also a new girl’s sweater pattern that even a-scared-to-knit-a-sweater gal like me might have to try someday.

One pattern I have tried, though, is the hat for a newborn. No circular needles required! The use of regular ol’ straight needles means that it’s not only easy to knit a cap with this pattern, but fastOnce your knitting is done, just take a a big needle and a piece of yarn and make a quick seam up the back. And there you have it! Something cute and practical to keep a newborn’s head nice and warm.

You can keep it simple and plain with just one color…

World Vision knit for kids plain cap

…try a two-tone variety…

World Vison knit for kids two tone hat

…or go all out with with a stripe or two!

Striped hat knit for kids

Children living in poverty need clothing. And they need to stay warm! Satisfy that urge to “make something” and know that your “something” just may count for quite a lot.



Next Trip, Champions & Upcoming Events

November 4, 2013 | Steve Fredlund

Muraho! (Hello)

Here’s a brief peek at what Our Response has planned for the months ahead. Be sure to keep reading to catch the details and mark your calendars.

  1. Application period for the fall 2014 trip is NOW open through end of November
  2. Go public with your support by becoming an Our Response Champion
  3. Come hear from the last trip team on November 14
  4. 4th Annual Celebration on January 26
  5. Special evening for child sponsors on February 22
  6. April is “Our Response to AIDS Month”
  7. Team World Vision just completed efforts to raise thousands for clean water

NEXT TRIP — We are tentatively planning on returning to Kivuruga in the fall of 2014, about a year from now! The application process has been moved up, so please take note if you are interested. The initial application is open through November 30, 2013, with selections made by the end of this year. If you would like an application or would like to discuss the trip, please contact Steve Fredlund at or 651.587.5435.

OUR RESPONSE CHAMPIONS — We are looking for individuals and organizations to “go public” by becoming official Our Response Champions. There is no financial commitment, just a commitment to intentionally support and encourage the efforts of Our Response. If interested, contact Steve Fredlund at or 651.587.5435. We are also looking for financial partners for 2014.

NOVEMBER 14 — Brad Wold and Steve Fredlund are hosting a discussion regarding the most recent trip to Rwanda, 6:30–8 p.m., at the Gathering Place, 145 2nd Avenue SE, Cambridge. This will be an interactive discussion with many pictures, videos, and artifacts to be shared. All are welcome!

JANUARY 26 —The 4th Our Response Annual Celebration will focus on “Celebrating the Story,” a wonderful event that will reflect on our first four years and look ahead to an exciting and impactful future. The Celebration will start at 6:30 pm, at the Performing Arts Center of the Cambridge-Isanti High School.

FEBRUARY 22 — We will host a special evening for current sponsors of children in Kivuruga, Rwanda. We want to thank our sponsors, as well as share details about the impact of sponsorship. We also want to highlight the experiences of those who have been to Rwanda and discuss other ideas. More details will follow, but mark the date.

APRIL — We are currently looking at claiming April as “Our Response to AIDS Month.” We plan to ask individuals and organizations to fully engage in raising awareness and funding for AIDS Caregiver Kits. We will assemble the kits in September and ship them to Kivuruga prior to our next trip.

TEAM WORLD VISION — This past weekend a team of runners partnered with Team World Vision to help bring clean water to the people of Rwanda. We are waiting for the totals to come in, but just want to say, “Thank you,” to the leadership: Calvin Friend, who led the Running to Respond efforts in East Central Minnesota, and Bill Ryan, who led the Leslie’s Wish effort at Allianz. Clean water is such a critical element to individual health, as well as the health of an entire community.

If you are not on the email list to receive updates, please send a note to Also feel free to reach out if you want to chat, become personally engaged, or get your organization involved. Thanks for all you are doing for the beautiful people of Kivuruga, and for injecting compassion throughout East Central Minnesota.

In gratitude,