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MyMercy Community! GOOD MORNING!!

Hello! My name is Sarah Leffel. I am currently in the Talent Pool to hopefully work in the Academy! I graduated college in April 2017 and soon after moved to Okayama, Japan where I teach four and five year olds. I love my students and my profession! I enjoy swimming, playing games, and reading. (Side note: If you have any good book suggestions--PLEASE comment and send them my way!!!) 


My most favorite thing is interacting with HUMANS. I think listening to stories is one of the greatest ways to spend our time. I love to ask the question, "Which single word do you most identify with?" (Again--if you have an answer and want to share, I would love for you to comment! It's been super cool to hear people's words). My word is TOGETHER.


I hope one day we get to meet in person!


  • KellyGrizzardKellyGrizzard Posts: 119


    So glad to hear about your interest/service
    with Mercy Ships.

    I am the Church Relations Recruiter, which
    means I have some resources that are available for you if you are
    going to be speaking at a church to share about your journey.

    I am not sure how much help I can be with you
    in Japan but I will try.  Perhaps I can send you material

    Please let me know if I can be of any

    Many people get to share their experience when
    they return from the ship as well. 

    You don’t have to worry if that should be you.
    We have what you need to help you succeed.

    You are our greatest asset and we are honored
    to have you join us.

    Serving Together,




    William "Kelly"

    Recruiter, Church Relations

    [email protected]

    +1 903.939.7000 (main) | +1 903.939.7677 (direct)



    MercyShipsPO Box 2020, Lindale, TX 75771-2020,| Bringing hope and healing ...

    Join our volunteer community ...



    message and any attachment are confidential and may be privileged
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  • Jeremy BrewerJeremy Brewer Posts: 82
    Hey Sarah,

    ​Thank you so much for your desire to serve with Mercy Ships.  It's great to know that you are in the talent pool and looking forward to serving with our Academy.

    ​My name is Jeremy and I'm the General Recruiter here at Mercy Ships.  I'm here to help you in whatever way I can as we look to the future together in helping you find a place to serve.

    My word would probably be "connections" or "encouragement".

    ​Books I'd recommend: "Start with Why" by Simon Sinek- this is a book our entire department is encouraged to read and its an excellent look at how we should be driven by WHY instead of by What.  For a great dance into fiction, two of my favorites are "The Name of the Wind" by Patrick Rothfuss or "The Way of Kings" by Brandon Sanderson.  I too love stories, especially the stories that come from people, and these two books are some of my favorite stories.

    ​What about you?  What are some books/stories that you would recommend?

    ​Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you while you are awaiting the opportunity to serve.  We hope to see you on board one day soon as we bring hope and healing to the world!

    Grace and peace,

  • SarahLeffelSarahLeffel Posts: 19
    Dear Mr. Jeremy,

    Thank you so much for your message-for explaining who you are, what you do, and answering both of my questions! Your message was so encouraging--I can already see why encouragement is one of your words! 

    Since I'm in Japan, I use my Kindle and Overdrive to get my books-- "Start with Why" is actually already on my list to read, so it's cool to hear you and your department are reading it! I put both "The Name of the Wind" and "The Way of Kings" on my "wish list" so the next time I'm looking for a good fiction read, I will have them ready to go. 

    As far as books I would recommend, I read mostly non-fiction and childrens chapter books. I'll send you two of my favorites from each. 
    • "30 Days a Black Man" by Bill Steigerwald: (my current read that I'm actually headed to after I post this) The true story of Ray Sprigle, a famous northern journalist who dyed his skin and traveled to the South as a "Black Man" and lived for 30 days in the "Jim Crow South".
    • "Just Mercy" by Bryan Stevenson: The summary from Overdrive does such a beautiful job explaining the book, I will just copy here: "Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn't commit. The case drew Bryan into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinksmanship—and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever. Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer's coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice." 
    • "Navigating Early" by Clare Vanderpool: Wow. There are just so many good things about this book I'm not sure where to start. It is about friendship and adventure and so much more. It is one of those books that I truly could not put down. It does take a second to really get into it, but once you are in: WOW. You MUST READ!!! 
    • "Wonder" by R. J. Palacio: Again, this is another MUST read. For ALL humans EVERYWHERE. It recently became a movie, so you may have heard of it from that and has inspired a "Choose Kind" movement. It is about a boy, Auggie, who was born with facial differences. The story is beautifully told and written, each chapter by a different character within Auggie's community. 
    I hope to see you all on board soon as well! Again, thank you!!

  • Jeremy BrewerJeremy Brewer Posts: 82

    ​Thank you so much for these recommendations.  I am always trying to encourage myself to stray more often from the fiction path.  These recommendations give me excellent motivation to do so!  

    I appreciate you taking the time to recommend them and giving such thoughtful reasons as to why.

    Please let me know if I can do anything else to help you.

    Grace and peace!
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