If there is such a thing as a British soul then I’m pretty sure I have one. If I didn’t know better I’d say that I grew up there and my parents just tricked me into thinking it was Wisconsin. I always thought they must have gone to great lengths to get all the snow shipped in and the cold to stay. I could really have done without the harsh winters, Mom.
While we were on family vacation in Arizona we stopped to see the Old London Bridge. Um, yeah, now I want to see the new one…in London!
Just before leaving for vacation, I had applied for a six month Discipleship Training Course (DTS) at Youth with a Mission in England but had sent in my application just two months before the school would start. I knew it was a stretch on time and didn’t know what to expect in reply and anxiously awaited an email that would let me know my fate. Will I be accepted? Or not?
So, when we got home from vacation and got an email saying I was accepted into a school in England I was ecstatic! Yay! I’m going to the school! I started filling out all the forms that the school gave me and then when I got to the next section it dawned on me… I didn’t even have a passport yet. As a matter of fact I didn’t have anything that I needed to be able to travel.
I hastily called and made an appointment for a passport application and got the passport within two weeks. Hey Ma! I’m official! Now to get the visa I needed a letter of sponsorship from the school I’d be attending. I sent my passport info to the school and waited for them to send to letter.
Meanwhile, I started filling out the visa application and once I got the letter I finished the online application. The last step before sending it all to the consulate in New York was to schedule a biometrics appointment in the twin cities but because of the Christmas holiday I had to wait until their next available appointment on December 29th. On the 29th, I drove the 2 hours to the cities, got to the appointment and was in and out within ten minutes. Now back on the road to go home. Yay! More driving!
Now I had everything I needed to send to NY so I packed it up and sent it in. Just after I had sent the application to the consulate I got news from the school that they were experiencing issues with UK immigration. Their visa sponsorship license is on hold until January 20th when the UK will decide whether or not to re-approve the license.
At the moment at least three students, myself included, are waiting to hear if their visas will be accepted. Our letters of sponsorship were sent before the suspension so we should be alright but right now it’s all up in the air on if the UK will accept us. I haven’t heard back yet and am supposed to fly out in three days.
Please keep this situation in your prayers. If the license is not approved 350 staff members and missionaries from the school will have to leave the country. This would be a big upheaval for the school and the missions that they have built there.
Above: Holmsted Manor in England where I will be attending