Chinese New Year, or Spring Festival, though little noticed on our Western calendar, is the cause of the world’s largest migration of people. Millions leave home by train every year to visit relatives in other cities and provinces, some on the other side of the country. 

This year though, millions of people will spend Chun Jie, due to the terrible ice and snow storms in southern China, without power. More than fifty people have died in relation to the weather already, and hundreds of thousands of people are stranded on one side or another of their trip. Eleven electricians have been killed trying to get the lights back on in these cities. The north and south of China have been pretty much divided. If you want to see some unbelievable pictures, look up the videos of more than a hundred thousand people waiting outside a train station in Chenzhou! We’re pretty sure most of the students that we know should have gotten home already, but it’s going to be a tough situation for those living in these areas.  

We don’t really have any weather problems – besides the ridiculously low temperatures. Only snowed twice this winter. But we’re learning that Chun Jie is the source of its own problems. True to its designation as the Chinese equivalent of Christmas, any shopping scene is insane! My wife went to Wal-Mart today (trust me, not nearly as luxurious as it sounds), and the near-fifty checkout lanes had lines back into the shopping aisles.  

All in all, this is a pretty cool holiday, even without the fireworks – more on that tomorrow. St. sent me a text message today to let me know that he had gotten home alright and that the Gospel is going well in his family. Not sure what that means, but it sounds pretty good! Keep praying for these guys.

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