13 August 2012


so, i am back from freakstock! and it was an amazing time! this year i held a workshop called "english for worship leaders" and i preached saturday at the main seminar (in front of 600+ people).

other than that i had time off, to talk to friends (and pray with them). this year i really came to peace, for once i was able to just relax in the chaos and sit off to the side and really BE where i was and in the conversations i was in. i think it was one of the best festivals ever!

there were two really fun evenings in there.. on one we may or may not have broken into the kids world and inflated the bouncy house... on the other some of the jesus freak women went out in evening dresses and ballgowns- i wore the maid of honor dress from kelly and lilly's wedding. and we just had fun, danced and laughed.. amongst 3000 festival goers in their ripped jeans and dirty tshirts. we were quite a sight!! (but no, i will not post a photo)

23 April 2012

vacation with God (and phil)

the idea came after a really difficult couple of weeks here.. i can't go into many details in an open forum because of privacy issues.. i am a drug counsellor, after all.. just say it was one of the rougher months. i knew i needed to get away or risk burnout, so i asked my friend phil if he was up for a spontaneous trip with God. he said yes, so we prayed and did what every logical person would do.. drew modes of transportation and direction out of a hat. ;) it landed on car to the east. so we set our sites on shared transportation and hitchhiking options to budapest. this is me on te second day, on our prayer tower. we really weren't out for tourism, but rather to spend time with God and let him work in us, through us and with us.. we wanted to come home relaxed and haveing shared our faith in a natural way with those He prepared for us to talk to.. no stress, not forcing anything.

we ended up doing a lot of hitchhiking- and realizing in every car why we had to wait for just that ONE. the conversations were great. i'm trying to keep this short, so i'll just say that. we still have contact to one driver per email, he might visit. we stayed with people in their homes using couch surfing.. also an amazing thing. we were able to give our host in budapest a german new testament and to share testimonies with our host in bratislava. in prague we stayed at a hostel (it was good friday) but were able to talk to the hostess about our faith. all in all a well planned trip- especially seeing as how WE didn't really plan it.

we spent a lot of time just talking about serious issues (phil's also studying theology, he will probably end up as a methodist preacher), praying, reading through 2 corinthians, and singing (without a gitare and in public..) we saw the sides of the city most people don't.. the ghetto, a park with several hundred homeless.. we just walked and prayed. we had no rush, no place to be, no electronic devices.. it was just us and God. it was extremely cool.

i don't want to write all the details.. for one, it would just be tooooo much, for another, it's hard to capture it in writing. i'd rather TELL it. so if you're interested, we could skype.. :)

i was in dallas, btw

so if you missed it- i went home for the first time in a few years in february. i saw my bro and sis-in-law, parents and gram. it was good.

my sermon on the mount

so yeah, i haven't been writing much lately.. i'll get better.. really.. maybe..

yesterday i preached at the jesus freaks.. well, actually.. WE preached NEAR the jesus freaks.. we being my friend phil and i, and near being on the little hill nearby. there was finally some spring wether, so we took church outdoors. our topic was "truth" and "being real" and was a result of our vacation with God and in truth.. which i realize now i haven't blogged about yet, so i guess i should.

anyway, we had wanted to try preaching together because we often have thoughts that expound upon one anothers, complete each others, and challenge each other.. we thought it'd be good. and truth has been following us.. i hit the text in 1 john 3: 18-22 and phil took psalm 139. he started us off with a look inside, getting an honest feel for who you are and how God sees you. the i talked about being real with others- the type of honesty that goes beyond not lying.

on our trip the sub-title was "vacation of truth." this came about after a Bible study experiment where we had read the part of the sermon on the mount (mat 5:42) about give to those who ask... the group decided to give it a radical try for a week, to see what would happen. their readiness to do this (especially in the face of some of the things i witnessed happening that week) really hit me. so the next week, when we talked about honesty, i asked if we were going to do it radically for a week, too? they weren't so thrilled by the idea...... so when phil and i were on our trip and the topic came up AGAIN at his home town small group, i reasked the question. he said ok... and so we spent the next week being completely honest with each other (if at times we had to be reminded) about our thoughts, feelings, and whatever thing we were talking about. not just no lies- we took it deeper. and because the whole thing was also a trip with God (see the next post i think i will write), there was also an atmosphere conducive to truth. we were safe to be real.

so.. the sermon will be available online tomorrow.. but, well it's german, so i probably won't link it. the 8 of you who still check this blog probably wouldn't understand us anyway ;)

21 January 2012

why go to them

"To be concerned with the outcast is an echo, or course, of the Gospel itself. Characteristically, the Christian is to be found in his work and witness in the world among those for whom no one else cares--the poor, the sick, the imprisoned, the misfits, the homeless, the orphans and beggars. The presence of the Christian among the outcasts is the way in which the Christian represents, concretely, the ubiquity and universality of the intercession of Christ for all men."

~William Stringfellow, My People is the Enemy

29 December 2011

looking ahead.. 2012

so.. and in order to write such a great review next year, i guess i have to set some goals! and here they are, in no particular order..

Ministry Goals 2012

~expand the RausKreis... this is a group i started in Leipzig similar to the StreetGroup in Bremen. so far though, we are very, very small. we meet mondays, which is unfortunate.. but we can hopefully change the day in 2012.

~get back into jail counseling. this has been a goal for so many years, that i never dreamt adding it to the list for 2011- and yet it came true in 2011 for half a year! now i am hooked, i really feel right when working in the jails- especially Torgau, the prison for more hardened, long-term criminals. yeah, i'm strange. i'd like to go back... possibly weekly in 2012. i even have someone who offered to donate the train tickets (which is what held me back the second half of the year- its 15e a day).

~begin mentoring at least one person.

~convoy 2012- we should do it again while we're hot!

~preach some more... i have realized this isn't my calling, but i like it so much and feel for occasional sermons i do have enough to say :)

~continue the cafe, and possibly expand it... right now we are open 2 days a week from 11 to 5, and are 2 women doing it. always with coffee and tea, and almost always i cook for whoever is there at meal time.

~reach out to theology students who are struggling with their faith or are not yet christians.

Personal Goals 2012

~get my credits for Bible NT, OT and pass the state Hebrew exam, start Greek, and two other credit bearing courses.

~re-up my financial support group and maintain a good communication with them about my work.

~get some style. i still look like a street worker.. but i am working in a more... uh... adult? dignified? yuppie? scene, and look a bit outta place sometimes. (who wants to thrift store it up in dallas in feb??)

~take a vacation (nbot a weekend.. a real trip) that is not related to work. it's been... uh... awhile.. the last real vacation was the kate-konspiracy in 2008. this year's goal (maybe)? if i pass hebrew i want to GO to israel. yeah, motivation! (just need a reeeeeaaaaaaalllllllyyyyyy cheap flight.. i can stay with friends of friends)

2011 review...

so, tradition would decree that i take a look back at my goals from december 2010 for this year, and see how i did.. and i'm not one to break with tradition now, am i... (insert laugh and then notice i happen to mean it this time, ironically)

Goals for 2011


~move to Leipzig. Some of you might have heard whispers of this.. now i am making it official. Next week i will be going to Leipzig to look for an apartment. It is the culmination of several reasons, and i will post about the decision in more detail later on.

yes! i got an apartment that week (the very one i wanted) and moved a week later. a lot of great people helped out- in fact, that's how i met many of them.

~make contact in the city with churches and organizations that are relevant for my type of ministry, establish what is already in place and what needs are still there.

yes... but maybe not as intensively as i had planned.

~if it fits, (and i kinda think it will) establish the Open Living Room. If not, seek God for His new plan in the city.

yes- ok, so i needed a push on this one, but we do have an open cafe twice a week!

~preach again!

yes- i man have only held three (two in leipzig, one on convoy) sermons, but hey, i never said how often i wanted to ;)

~start Theater projects. If the camera is replaced, start film projects.

no... darn, not a perfect record. i'd kinda forgotten about this.. however, i DID get my camera fixed (by a friend, who just basically turned it on..) so....

~Convoy 2011 (yeah! we are finally planning another convoy!!)

yes! the convoy was three weeks in july, ending at freakstock and mostly through cities in the former east germany.

~maintain the financial support group.

yes... although just barely. my financial status is under the needed amount as of this month (dec 11) and going forward. so if you are looking for a missionary to support in the new year.........


~go to lots of Doctors and get all of my stuff checked and fixed and in good shape.

yeah... so i am not glad about this, but i went to lotsa doctors.. starting in january with two visits to a doc and followed in the spring by a serious problem with my optic nerve that left me quite limited for about two months. i really got my money outta the insurance on that one. then there was another elective thing, that wasn't covered by insurance, but a friend from highland baptist sponsored that.

~live alone, Communal living is great, and i though i would always want it.. but i am tired, and just need my own 4 walls to come home to. This might pass, but for now, i just want some space where there aren't random people at all hours making noise and messes. Moving to Leipzig means i can find an apartment for the price i pay here for a single room in a shared flat.

yes! i actually got an apartment here for the EXACT rent i was paying in a small shared flat in karlsruhe! it has been such a blessing.. i have two rooms, kitchen and bath (with tub). the catch is i don't have heaters- just coal burning stoves. and it happens to be in the part of town renown for drug dealors and violence... but that means it's perfect, right? i really like my neighbors and most of the people in our building are quite nice. there have been a lot of cool conversations. i think this particular apartment is exactly right for me, and for God. (yeah, i guess i do have a roommate...)

~Studies... finish my NT courses and learn Hebrew. Be at least half finished with masters by end of 2011.

ok... this one got overhauled... due to the visa issues i was forced to register at the university, not the distance program i was doing. this meant i had to leave the other program and my credits didn't transfer. i have started to see why being at the university is part of God's plan, though. you'd be amazed how many theology students do not believe... hint: more than half. so, i took my ethics, church history, and judaism requierments and jail-counseling last spring. now i am in hebrew, new testament and old testament.. the bible classes end in feb, hebrew goes another semester. i am also taking sign language for fun. if this sounds like a lot.. it isn't. i go to university a day and a half a week.

~visit Dallas.. it's been 2 years already.

wellllll...... does booking a flight count?? i am coming to the states in february-- save time for me everybody! i would love to meet up, get a coffee or plumage a thrift store!

~learn another big chunk of Bible verses.

no... instead this year i ended up concentrating on learning what content is in every chapter of the bible. thats for the exams in feb. after that feel free to quiz me.

26 December 2011

christmas 2011... Görlitz

i spent this christmas the way i usually do... with the down and outs with nowhere else to go, with a group of jesus freaks cooking up a good meal. this year i was invited by my friends öko and ben to go to a town on the polish boarder where they live and help out. we cooked a midnight meal for about 30 people at an all-night christmas party. see for yourself!

my christmas package from highland baptist: WOW! best package EVER!

Öko in the teekeller kitchen

looks yummy... traditional german meal.


ben playing cards with guests..


coffee and tea..

ben and i

the message.

07 December 2011

jesus freaks leipzig on tv

click on the title of the post to see a short news clip about the jesus freaks leipzig (and see me a few times). it's in german, but there's some worship and m friends.. from 1min 10 to 4 min 40.

14 October 2011

the kindness of strangers

i just got in from Beethoven's 4th and 6th symphonies at the Gewandhaus Leipzig (big-deal orchestra). It was absolutely amazing! and... i was there because a stranger gave me a ticket! (my seat cost over 40euro) it was a wonderful night out, wearing a fancy ball gown and doc martens... watching people and listening to the music. oh, and my classmates got a good laugh out of it too, because i first went to hospital counseling fully decked out for the evenings entertainment. (i think most readers can appreciate how unusual it is to see me in a dress....)

24 September 2011

remember my foot?

ok, so i have tried reeeeaaaallllyyy hard to keep the whinning about my foot to a minimum over the past few years.. but now i need to. it all started back here in the summer of 2007. yeah, thats a long time. i spent 13 months on crutches, wore an ankle brace for much longer, and have had a constant level of pain bad enough to make things... difficult (understated). then there were the bad days... the days i walked too far or stood too long (more than 5 minutes was uncomfortable, more than 15 meant swelling), or slept on it funny (even though it was wrapped in a down comforter for support), or the weather was changing.... on those days, the pain was so bad, i couldn't manage even the most routine things. like walking to the bathroom instead of crawling. there were often weeks when the foot would swell up after having overdone it (again, with basic daily things) and i'd resort to the crutches again. and on the worst of those, the pain affected my mood pretty bad, making me bitter and bitting, and i'd have to lock myself away to not offend people- or let them see the tears of pain i couldn't fight back. people who barely know me know i can't walk. in karlsruhe and leipzig people just accepted it for who i am, because they didn't know me differently.

so i tried to keep this out of my reports, mentioning it on the side, as a prayer request scantily formed.. and had long since given up the hope of anything changing. even the doctors said a surgery would have only about a 30% chance of helping.

so here's the reason i am bringing it up now: despite my conviction that i was just going to have to tough it out and bear it, God healed me. its been six weeks now. At freakstock people kept praying for it.. which is nice.. but also kinda annoying when they stop you alot and pray "for nothing." it gets old. like, what's the point? and it starts to rub a bit on faith... but i won't go into all the issues that it raises at this point.. anyway...

the last night of freakstock i pulled an all-nighter talking to a good friend of mine in the tea tent. at about 5 am an american doctor (who is kinda a mentor for the jesus freaks) came in.. we chatted for a few minutes and, as usual, he said, "well before i go let's pray together for cate's leg." my friend wasn't an advocate of faith healing prayers, and the doc himself had already prayed for me ten times over the years at least.. and i was tired and not really in more pain than usual... and just kinda figured "let him pray quick and get it over with, then we can go back to the conversation." and so they prayed while i watched the people across the room tell jokes. i think the prayer was about two sentences.

so the morning after freakstock i woke up. oh.. thats unusual- to sleep all night without waking up from pain. and then to not have pain in the morning. any pain. not even that constant companion pain i had grown so accustomed to. and i was skeptical at first...

but it;s been 6 weeks. i bike reeeaaalllyyy long distances, stand around talking, go for walks, climb stairs.... basically, i act like a normal slightly lazy human (yeah, my foots fine, but i am still outta shape).

anyone want to go hiking? or maybe start jogging? (oh, i dont have any shoes for that.. i had to wear ones with ankle support for so long..) or just talk about how great God is (preferably while standing)?

30 August 2011

Freax Café

we started opening the jesus freaks space up twice a week for an informal café. there are no set prices, it's pay what you can and want. there are no fancy specialty drinks or pastries, just whatever people bring along. we are just there, kinda like sitting in your friends living room. we cook together, we chill together, we play games, worship, talk and pray. it people need something, we see if we can help. but for the most part, it is just about community. from 11 to 5 we are there. freaks come in and out, and a few friends from elsewhere, and now we are starting to see the first few people stopping by randomly. we are hoping that this informal setting will help us reach out into the community.

18 August 2011


0-8-15 is a saying in german for something thats standard. and well, since that's my bday, i guess i set the standard! this year for the 32nd time. it was a nice day, i had a grill party with friends- vegetarian and alcohol free. we hung out in a park, and invited others passing by to join us- occasionally with success.