My wife Aušra and I are planning on going to the States at the end of this summer - beginning of fall (16 August - 20 September). This trip, if successful, would be a mixture of personal/family and ministry affairs (I am co-ordinating a Lithuanian Christian apologetics ministry called apologetika.lt). We have our plane tickets in our pockets, but in order for us to do everything that we planned in the U.S., we'd also need to rent a car.
The car rental costs are not that small and, even though, we could manage to cover it ourselves, by God's grace, my friend Jackie Cox suggested creating a "Fund Me" campaign of sorts to help us cover some/all of the expenses of car hire, as there already were some people willing to donate and contribute to this trip. That, of course, would be a huge blessing for us, as we could leave some of our savings alone and use them later for our living in Lithuania. It would also be helpful because car rental companies require a deposit (which is refundable) in addition to the car rental price. That, clearly, is not your problem but if you feel that you'd like to contribute to it all, that would be great. Keep on reading for the details.
Our route will look something like this: Florida (my uncle and his family) - Georgia (new friends) - Oklahoma (coach Don Calvert, Jerry and Charlotte Langley) - Colorado (Athletes in Action/Cru ministers and my friends Brad and Adrienne Bartz) - Texas (Jackie and Roberta Cox, Jim and Nancy Johnson, Ken and Beverly Jinkerson) - Louisiana (Joyce Cox Purdue) - Florida; while crossing more states and potentially visiting more people and some churches, if they will let us in.
Here are the goals of the trip:
1) I want my friends in the U.S. to meet my wife, and for her to meet them for the first time; 2) We want to bring greetings from Mazeikiai Baptist Church (Lithuania) to those who attended it while working/living in Mazeikiai a long time ago (I hope we will be able to get to those people). I somehow thought this would be emotionally and spiritually relevant; 3) I want to visit some churches/people and share about my ministry and things that are happening in Lithuania in relation to God's work and the Gospel of Christ there; maybe some people will want to contribute to that, too 4) We'd like to attend an apologetics conference/training, if at all possible, while there; one that I would not be able to get to in Europe. 5) I'd like to travel around the U.S. with my wife and have sort of a family adventure, since this is probably the best time for us to do that (we do not have kids, yet; my wife is planning on finding a new job - she works as a lawyer; I am, too, able to get away for a month before, hopefully, starting my Master's studies in Vilnius and continuing doing more intense work in the field of apologetics the next academic year).
Here's the breakdown for how the money would be used:
~$800 - car rental cost for 35 days; ~$120 - additional car insurance; ~$400 - gas.
If we won't reach the goal or if nobody will decide to donate, that is not a problem, as God is taking good care of us all the time. All in all, we definitely do not want to be a burden to anyone. Thus, if you'll decide to give, let it be out of a joyous heart.
Thank you for taking the time to read all this.
May God's face shine upon you and the peace of Christ be with you all,
Laurynas and Aušra