There are numerous reasons why and how each of us are here in Mori, India.

A few of us are here because we felt it on our heart. We felt a deep sense that we we’re meant to go here. A few of us are here because we wanted to explore another culture. We wanted to learn from another culture. We want to expand our worldviews.

However, all of us are here because of a story. Not any small story, but a story told by the Master Storyteller, himself.

The Master Storyteller is asking us to play a role in his grand plan for the world. Stepping into Mori is a step we are taking to become a part of this bigger story.

We are all building stories with our lives and we have a choice to be complacent and stay where we are. We could keep our cozy, comfortable faith. We could keep our summer free to work and make money to further our schooling and our own personal dreams.

However, we all decided that we didn’t want to live for our own story, we wanted to live for one much, much bigger than ourselves. As author, Donald Miller, states, “A character has to jump into the story, into the discomfort and the fear, otherwise the story will never happen.”

And in coming to Mori that is what we have done. We have taken the jump, and we have become a small part of the story that is already being written by Hope for People for the Kingdom.

We have already been greatly blessed by the staff of Hope for People, and the amazing stories that they are living for the Kingdom. There will be more on them and their stories to come, so stay tuned.

Here’s how our story began:

You would think, after 36+ hours of travelling, our team would be doing quite a bit worse than they are right now. However, this team is built of champs, ready for the challenge, full of love and patience, and (as of a few hours ago) world-class international travellers. Here’s a look into what the past few hours, and days, looked like as we made our way from our humble homes to the vast and beautiful land of India.

May 26th, 2015: Our trek begins at Azusa Pacific University at 10:30am. A van takes us eager college students to Tom Bradley International to catch our first (and longest) flight—LAX to Dubai, UAE—at 4:45pm.

16 hours later we arrive in Dubai only to say “hi” for a little over an hour before we catch our connecting flight to Hyderabad, India. We arrive in India in the wee hours of the morning, ready to face a daunting six-hour layover in Hyderabad’s airport.

A few hours later India’s bright orange sun greets us, marking our first full day here: May 28th, 2015.

At 9:00am our jet-lagged and travel-weary souls muster up enough energy to make our way to the next terminal among bustling crowds and over-populated elevators. This is the second-to-last leg of our journey and a mere one hour flight looks like nothing compared to the Everest we just climbed.

10:15am: It seems we have lived a lifetime in just a few short days as we load our luggage into a van, pile into another ourselves (Leo, of course, sitting on the floor of the vehicle in a very legal fashion) and begin the three-hour, sensory-overloading, and possibly half-dazed ride from Rajahmundry to Mori.

Thus, our journey ends as our excited, confused, and sweaty bodies finally find our resting place—Riverside School—where we are greeted with extravagant, graceful hospitality as the Riverside staff bestows us with gorgeous flower leis, smiles, and welcomes.

As our first day in India draws to a close, we are grateful and prayerful. Our trip across continents may be finished for now, but our story is still at the very beginning.



Follow more of the story on instagram with #themoristory and #becauseindia,  the Hope for People Facebook page, and this blog.


Striving to live a better story,

Leo, Katie, and The Team.