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Why I Volunteer: To Serve the Lord

Mary and Bill Reed

Q: How did you first get involved with Living Waters for the World (LWW)?

I heard Joanie Lukins talk about LWW at a Presbytery meeting in 2003. I recall thinking that I had no experience in international mission and this might be a good way to start. I had to cancel my plans to participate in a system installation the first time because the date conflicted with a job interview. (Ironically, had I gotten that job I probably would never have been active with LWW). I went the next year to an installation in the town of Lerma in the Yucatan. I enjoyed the trip and have been going 1-2 times a year ever since.

Q: Why have you stayed involved?

In many ways, I am not the ideal LWW volunteer. I don’t know a lot about electricity or plumbing. I am not an educator nor a medical professional. My Spanish is very rudimentary. I do have experience with the structures of the Church, but that is not something in short supply among LWW leadership. So in a way it is a case of the Lord using me even in spite of my modest abilities.

Bill sits atop a water building for a system serving a school and community in Belize

Q: In what roles do you volunteer and why did you choose to take on these responsibilities? I am on the Yucatan Network Coordinating team. I have also served on the Development and Awareness Committee (recently renamed Awareness and Engagement). I took on these commitments because I was asked and wanted to contribute. Q: How has your involvement with LWW impacted your life? I have made many great friends. It is consistent with what I think God would want me to do with my life. Q: What's an experience or story from your time with LWW that stands out as one of the most meaningful? A story that illustrates your “why”? I sometimes say: It is easy to hand a kid a glass of water and ask him/her to smile, then take a picture. What does that really tell you? On the other hand when an adult takes time to travel to a conference to learn how their water system can operate even better, that is solid evidence that those folks are convinced of their system’s value. LWW sponsors many conferences for partners in countries where we are active. For me, attending partner conferences has been what most vividly demonstrates the value of our work.

A large group of operators and educators attended the 2018 Yucatan Partner Conference (Bill is front row, far right)

Q: When you're not volunteering for LWW, where are we likely to find you and what would we find you doing? I joke that in retirement I am trying to save the world in several ways. I volunteer with Habitat a fair amount, am active in Transylvania Presbytery, have been involved with KY Refugee Ministries, and lead worship somewhere a couple times a month (I do get paid a little to do that). I have been able to continue to play tennis and spend some time playing the horses. Of course, I am very blessed to be married to Mary.


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