18 November 2010

where are you?!

that's the question i have been asked a LOT this week, and i guess it's fair, since i was supposed to have been deported on monday and never really got around to telling anyone that plans changed... but really, if i HAD been deported, i would of bloged/facebooked/stirred up international news coverage/ cried about it everywhere.

so yeah, i am [still, for now] in germany. and i have delayed the packing up of my personal items [for now] but haven't brought the stuff back that had already been banned to the basement either. they have a stack of new paperwork from me an inch thick (i hope the german government recognises my hat tip to bureacracy in that) and will be taking a while to get through it all. so they gave me a stay through january.

looks like i won't be "home" for christmas.. instead i'll be staying home.

ministry wise... winter is upon us, making street work that much more miserable. every winter i wonder why i do this.. but i guess i can't stop either. there's just something about the hopelessness. as every year i am now collecting warm things to be passed out as part of my st. nicks day action... the german kids get gifts in their shoes on the 6th of december, i am trying to do the same for the homeless (like, you know, SOCKS in their shoes..) if anyone feels like donating a little extra for socks/blankets/thermal undies/ hats/gloves/scarves....you get the picture.. drop me a line and i'll give you my paypal details. or come on over and help me pass things out! (i have a fold out bed and a sofa, but warning i snore).

and also i was thinking of cooking a thanksgiving meal over at the salvation army this year. since i don't know when thanksgiving is, and no one here cares i will just pick a random day in the next week or two.

02 November 2010

News on Visa

so.. pardon the lack of new posts.. ministry has been suffering a bit under the necessity of taking care of business. there is n point building up my project while my future is hanging by a thread...

for the uninitiated:
the german government has been giving me trouble about my visa since april, calling me in every few weeks and not renewing me. at my last appointment, they told me that they could only renew my visa if one of two things happens: i get a job (which until now i wasn't allowed to do) or get engaged... so now last week a letter came saying that they intend to deport me, and that i have until nov 10 to add any reason they shouldn't to my file. If not, then i have to leave by the 15th. *panik*

the current stance:
i have gotten a lot of legal advice from the friend of a friend in berlin (H), and am now taking a lawyer here in karlsruhe. The Jesus Freaks set up a Task Force (TF) of four people who are helping me structure my files and thoughts and plan a strategy. Because part of the test that the gov't sent me rejected my MTh program, I contacted the school (MBS) about an explanation of their curriculum that describes it as "comparative" to a German institute. MBS not only is writing such a document, they also have been brainstorming ways to help, like my TF. MBS called the gov't this morning to ask specific questions and find out what else they could do to help. MBS then wrote a letter on my behalf that i can send, and also structured the letter that i am supposed to send asking for a hearing (because, as MBS said it "we're better at legaleez") so that i just have to sign it and send it in. H has recommended that i get a lawyer (L) and that the best chance i have at this point is to get someone to offer me a job doing my ministry basically through their organisation and filtering my financial support, essentially giving my ministry a form that the gov't recognizes. the TF is talking to their contacts and one of my supporters has an organisation that does this type of thing (V) and they are considering the option. this option would mean that i need to raise my support level by about 400e in order to be paid what i am now (Germans have a lot of taxes). The TF is meeting again tonight, V is speaking to her contacts today, and my appointment with L on thursday. in addition, Z is considering the option of a limited financial "buergschaft"- basically a contract that he would be responsible if i got into a financial jam.

on the side i am cleaning out my junk and packing things i don't use regularly into the basement, so that if i should have to leave the country in two weeks my room would be in a state that it could be rented out for the time. if i did leave, i would most likely be going to switzerland to work with punks in zurich and continue to study there (MBS has a school there and i have contacts to a christians doing punk ministry). Or maybe i'd fly home for a few weeks first (M2M have made an offer of help).

life's busy.