Monday, June 26, 2006
After our marathon car ride of Day nine, we awoke on Sunday and decided that we just didn't have enough driving. So we hit the road about 8 am to drive for another 1.5 hrs to go and visit Jeff's seminary roommate and good friend, Mark Jicinsky. Mark is the pastor of Ebenezer Reformed Church of Leighton, IA. Just in case some of our readers have never heard of Leighton (which would be a complete shocker) it is located Southwest of Iowa City, about 1.5 hrs from there, and about 45 minutes from Des Moines. The "town" is about 5-6 streets wide and 3-4 streets wide, and is surrounded by farms. It really is a beautiful area, and Ebenezer Reformed Church was a great place to visit. I finally got to meet a few more of Jeff's relatives, his cousins Lois and Arlan, which was a treat for me. Everyone at church was quite friendly, and introduced themselves to us, making us feel very at home. The area around Leighton is full of people of Dutch descent, and here is listing of some of the last names of people who attend Ebenezer: Kerndt, Veldhuizen, Van Maanan, Bogaard, Ver Ploeg, Van Haaften, De Jong, Overbergen, Nunnikhoven, Ver Meer and Van Waardhuizen. Mark preached a good sermon from 1st Peter, and it was great seeing Mark's wife, Cara, who is expecting the birth of their first child, Ella Grace, at any moment. We ate a good lunch made by Lois, then visited the metropolis of Pella (near Leighton) before making our way back to Iowa City. We had heard great things about the bakery in Pella, but sadly it was closed and so we weren't able to buy any Dutch Letters, (whatever those are.) Then it was back to Iowa City, where we walked around downtown and got to eat some great German chocolate cake, made by Melanie.