God's Connecting Points

By Archie Kittler Hanna, AB, Canada

1976 OMS/MFM Mission Convention at Sea voyagers
The MS Skyward with the 1976 OMS/MFM Mission Convention at Sea voyagers
This is a time-line story of God's connecting points! In the fall of 1975, three families from Hanna, Alberta, Canada, area decided to go on an OMS/MFM Mission Convention at Sea. In January 1976, we boarded the MS Seaward Ship in Miami, Florida, and headed to our first port-of-call which was Cap-Haitien, Haiti.

While in Cap-Haitien, and under the guidance of Harry Burr, we toured the OMS 4VEH mission compound. There, we were met by Canadians Les and Ruth Babcock, which has resulted in a life-long friendship.
Don Penneycad and Harry Burr with team on 1976 Caribbean cruise
Front left, Don Penneycad and Harry Burr with team are greeted at Saint Thomas stop on 1976 Caribbean cruise

After we left Cap-Haitien and while cruising along one evening, Harry Burr and Don Penneycad challenged us to organize the Hanna area Men for Missions Council. When we returned home we gathered more members and began raising funds for various mission projects.

Then in 1977, some of our council members decided to go to Ecuador on a work team. One of the members, Tom Edler, who was an eligible bachelor met Bev, an eligible missionary from Montana, who was serving in the OMS medical clinic. A year later Tom and Bev were married and settled on Tom's farm in Youngstown, Alberta, Canada.

In the subsequent years, they reared a family and forty years later, three of our original cruise members were back at Cap-Haitien on a work project. We had the pleasure of meeting Bill and Julie Edler. Bill is the son of Tom and Bev Edler, and Julie is from Northern Ireland. Bill teaches at the Emmaus Biblical Seminary and Julie is a physical therapist at the Bethesda Medical Clinic. Bill Edler, son of Tom and Bev, shows the eternal results of that OMS/MFM Mission Convention at Sea, now 40 years later.

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