Alexis and Travis met at Mill Creek Foursquare (Mill Creek is a northern suburb of Seattle) in February 2003. We had many mutual friends and in June of that year we began courting. Travis was due to leave for a year in September of 2003 to help with a church plant in Zakopane, Poland. Yes, we were courting and living on opposite sides of the world, no it wasn’t easy, yet it forced a lot of verbal communication, a giant blessing in getting to know a possible future spouse.
Six months into Travis’ year-long trip Alexis came and helped for six weeks. Well, it turned out that bringing two people together after six months of separation and living completely different lifestyles can be quite explosive… while in retrospect it was good, the process was hard and hurtful. We stuck it through, and realized there was a lot more for us to learn.
Soon after Alexis and Dan left, Travis yelled at God “I hate this country”, about two weeks after that Travis traveled with Carol and Denise, the missionaries at the time in Nowy Targ, Poland, to Switzerland for the annual Foursquare Europe conference. On the second day, Travis was listening to some outgoing missionaries from Germany who were, of all places, going to Hillsboro, OR. As they spoke God began working in Travis’ heart, and for nearly two hours there was an undeniable burden for Poland placed on his heart – he knew he had to return.
It was during Alexis’ trip that we met Dan Russell, at the time he was a youth pastor from East Hill Church in Gresham, OR, it was he who told us about the International Training Program, a two year program of biblical studies at the Oregon College of Ministry and ministry interning at East Hill Church. We both knew/wanted some kind of training, and this gave us the opportunity for both biblical teaching and ministry training. On September 11th, 2004 we moved to Gresham and lived as interns. Early in that first year we broke up for three months, due to the growing tensions of culture-shock and reentry. In those three months the Lord showed us a lot about ourselves, why he brought us together, and what we needed him to individually do in our hearts.
Since leaving Poland in 2004, we have returned every year, either as part of a trip with the interns to the European Foursquare Youth summer camp, or on our own. Each year we visit and work with the same Polish people who have become very close to our hearts, and by September of 2010 we plan on moving to Kraków, Poland. October of 2008 was our 6th trip to Poland.
In November 2005, Travis proposed to Alexis at the Grotto reserve in Portland. In June of 2006 we graduated with Associates in Pastoral studies, the next month we were married on July 9th. Shortly before our trip of 2007 Alexis became pregnant and on April 9th, 2008 we welcomed Emma Eileen into our family!
You may visit our Photos pages for pictures from our trips, wedding, and family.
Thanks for reading!
For more information you may contact us at mielonens[AT]reachpolska.info