11/22  We settled in Mardin, Turkey a city known as a melting pot of  many different cultures and religions. We found a pension in the center of town and looked for the nearest historical church. Upon exploring it, Claire opens one of the church doors and wakes up a young man who politely tries to show us around  but the door into the sanctuary is locked. He wanted to take us to a monastary in which he stayed for a month so we all get on a minibus and head out of town. He says the walk is merely 20 min. from the drop off point but it turns into over an hour. The landscape is beautiful and the black longhaired goats are adorable. We arrive just before closing but since he knows the monks, we get to be in their service which consists of 2 groups of boys singing  back and forth to each other under the leadership of the monks. The Holy Spirit was moving powerfully in Claire and myself and we were at such peace when we left. It was quite late so one of his friends calls a taxi and we escape the long cold walk back to the minibus  pickup point. We had dinner with him and learn that he is a Coptic refuge from Egypt. We all were looking forward to having Thanksgiving with him but he got the opportunity to return to Istanbul and be united with his luggage. As  we often find out we had a close friend in common that we had met in Istanbul during ,our stay. Its both a large and small body in Christ. One of my best birthdays.  Chuck