Update from Maria

Transformative Leadership

Dobro Dan, Everyone!
I am so excited to tell you all about the opportunity I had to go to Croatia this
last month and all of the incredible things God did while I was there.
I was invited to come and help serve at the International Economics,
Diplomacy and Integrity Forum in Croatia. This forum “is an initiative
designed to support the development of professionals and students in the
areas of economics, business and politics with integrity based on the life and
teachings of Jesus.” (Economic Diplomacy and Integrity 2017)

The conference, however, is not just aimed at Christians. It is
open to people of all different faiths and world-veiws to come and
learn from the principles of Jesus. This forum and the work of the
whole EDI Team is making such a huge impact in the lives of so
many people from nations around the world traumatized by
conflict. Most of the participants came from post-conflict and
post-communism countries such as: Albania, Romania, Serbia,
Croatia, and South Africa.

Christ’s Power is made perfect in our…

I was invited to help provide and facilitate the music for the EDI
2017 conference. A friend of mine who I met in Belfast, Zachary
Schmidt, told me about the conference and asked me to come and
help him serve as the main music coordinator. I was excited not
only for the opportunity to serve through music but also for the
opportunity to learn as much as I could from this incredible
conference.
A few weeks after Zac invited me to come help him with the music,
Zac developed a severe pain in his shoulder which also caused his
fingers to go numb. This severely limited his ability to play music.
We decided that it would be best if I lead most of the music and
anything that he lead I would help support him on guitar or piano.
Even though this situation was obviously not ideal, both Zac and I
were so encouraged by the reminder that Christ’s power is made
perfect in our weakness. We all come from different situations
and we each have our own unique challenges and struggles, but
this in no way excludes us from working with Christ to impact our
world. In fact, it is often through our weaknesses that His power
is displayed more brilliantly to those around us as we lean and
depend on Him more. This truth became kind of a theme for the
entire conference. I’m so thankful I got to work together with Zac
and see God encourage people through music everyday.

Artists for Integrity

I was also able to connect with Zac and his wife Sonia about the
project they are starting in Spain called Artists for Integrity. The
vision behind this initiative is to help connect and encourage a
network of artists around the world that are interested in using
their skills as artists to transform their communities. Zac and I
have made plans to continue working together on this project and
we hope to see it grow into an international movement of artists.

In Summary 🙂

I was also able to connect with Zac and his wife Sonia about the
project they are starting in Spain called Artists for Integrity. The
vision behind this initiative is to help connect and encourage a
network of artists around the world that are interested in using
their skills as artists to transform their communities. Zac and I
have made plans to continue working together on this project and
we hope to see it grow into an international movement of artists.

Bonus Videos!

Just for fun, I thought I would share with you a couple of videos from the conference.

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