When God calls
Orange locals, Danny and Jen Cooke along with their four children; Ebony, Willow, Micah and Ezra, will be flying out to live in Tanna, Vanuatu in February where they will greet their new lifestyle with open arms. Their reason for going is to assist and serve a Christian ministry on the island.
Since visiting the village of Sulphur Bay on Tanna, Vanuatu, in 2017, the Cooke family had a growing sense to return. Danny said, “We just fell in love with the place as did the kids, we hardly saw them, they were off playing with the village children and the little pigs.”
“I grew up in a small village in Nepal and going to this place had a similar feel of that simple childhood that I had, in a way it felt familiar. There is something deep inside us that wants to get back to that simple way of life. We want our kids to experience life the way a majority of the world does without the excess we have here in Australia.”
The Cooke family will reside in Tanna for a year, to return next December. Danny will be assisting Pastor Taruei teach the Bible to the youth and young adults as well as training the youth group leaders. Jen will be supporting the local teacher in the school. “A lot of what we will be doing is just getting alongside people and learning from them.” Danny said, "We are going to assist the community there and just love the people and live as they do, we will be helping out and teaching the Bible in a culturally sensitive and respectful way."
The Cooke's house will be located not too far from an active volcano (Mt Yasur), “You can hear it rumbling away in the background of your day to day activities, you can also spot red hot rocks shooting out from the top at night time.”
Jen added, “I am looking forward to... being able to sit, and just be. It is something completely different to what we are used to, and there is some excitement in that.”