In the summer of 2014, I traveled to Balamand University, Lebanon. I was part of a delegation to an international gathering of the leadership of the Antiochian Orthodox Church, the largest global body of Arab Christians and their fellow believers, who for many years contracted with me to oversee their English language Internet work.
This opportunity allowed me exposure to a vast range of challenges and learning experiences, from performing at my peak after 30 hours of travel, to overcoming cultural and language barriers, to discovering how to fruitfully contribute to a diverse team working in an even more diverse setting as we spent time in Beirut, Byblos, Balamand, and the mountains near the Syrian border. Lebanon is a small multi-ethnic and multi-faith nation on the edge of a war zone, straining under refugees fleeing Syria, while simultaneously a vibrant modern society. Working in this environment, photographing the event, and writing the official delegation report was an honor.