Category Archives: General

Merry Christmas!

This has been an eventful year for the Kranich family!

In April, we took a spring break trip to Quebec City and Montreal. Liesl and Anja got to practice French, and we all felt like we had a bit of a European adventure in North America.

The biggest news is that after 26 years (for Karl) and 24 years (for Liesl), we’re no longer serving with Cru.

Before that, though, we enjoyed one last summer in Colorado on Cru’s staff conference team. It was great to spend time with our Cru friends from all over the country, and Anja had her first paying job at the Coffee House.

In the fall, Karl started working at Liberty Mutual Insurance, working with document management systems. He likes his team, the work, and the simple commute to 96th and Meridian in Indianapolis.

Liesl has been volunteering at the first (hopefully annual) Carmel Christkindlmarkt. It lets her combine her loves of Germany, Christmas, and singing, which is awesome. Check it out next year — I’m sure it will happen again.

Anja is in 10th grade and is learning to drive (slowly, since she’s not very motivated). So far, so good!

We continue to enjoy worshiping and serving at Christ Community Church.

In the midst of this season that can be busy and stressful, we pray that each one of us can find some time to rest in the peace and joy that God offers in Christ.

Leaving Cru for a New Adventure

We sent this announcement out in July via email and snail mail, but I just realized that I never posted it here.  Apologies to anyone who is subscribed to the blog but not our email list!

We feel like we served people well in Colorado at Cru17, the conference for all Cru staff in the U.S.  The theme of the conference was WITH: a time to connect with God, one another and the greater body of Christ.

There’s so much we could say about the conference, but …

We have big news!

For the past year or so, God has been building a sense of restlessness in me (Karl).  After much prayer, career assessments, and counsel, we have decided that it’s time to move on from Cru and try something new.

This is a huge step for us – this summer we celebrated 26 (Karl) and 24 (Liesl) years with Cru.  Both of us joined Cru right out of college, and we met at Cru’s headquarters.  The idea of moving on is full of sadness and anxiety, but also excitement and anticipation.

Thank you so much your partnership WITH us in the gospel!  Your prayers and gifts have yielded much fruit as we have built and maintained systems that keep Cru’s ministries going and help our field staff share the gospel more effectively.  We continue to be humbled by the dedication that you have shown us, and look forward to keeping in touch.

If you are giving through direct deposit or an automated credit card gift, please consider transferring that to another Cru missionary.  Let us know if you’d like some suggestions.  You can contact the Cru donation team at (888) 278-7233.

Regarding our next steps, my original plan was to start looking for a job in August after we got back from Colorado.  But an amazing series of events has led to me accepting a job offer at Liberty Mutual Insurance about 20 minutes from our home.  I’m really enjoying the work and my new team.

If you have any questions, please call, email, or use our contact form.  And once again, thank you for your involvement in our decades of ministry with Cru!

Current Projects

We have some big projects happening in Cru’s Digital Products and Services office right now, and I’m involved in two of them:

Going Google
google-logoIn 2013, Cru in the US started using Google for mail, calendar, contacts, document sharing, and video conferencing. I love how Google’s tools allow us to work together across great distances.

Now we’re encouraging our ministries around the world to join us in the Cru Google system. Last weekend we migrated our Czech Republic staff, and we’re making plans for Latin America, South Africa, and other areas. Please pray that we plan carefully and communicate clearly as we work with teams around the globe to make this happen.

Redesigned Online Giving Site
new-give-siteAn increasing amount donations to Cru come through our online giving site at The site works well on a full-sized computer, but doesn’t resize well for use on mobile devices.

As more and more people interact with the web on phones and tablets, we need to make sure that all of our web sites are “responsive” – that is, they respond to the screen size. It’s never good when you have to scroll left and right to view an entire web page or fill out a form online.

Here’s a fun experiment: browse to on a laptop or desktop, then gradually shrink the width of your web browser. Images that were beside each other will shrink, then stack on top of each other or disappear.

We would love to have this project done before the peak end-of-year giving season. Please pray that we can build all of the features and get rid of all of the bugs quickly!

Worship and Prayer


Imagine hosting 11 college students! We had the privilege of hosting the Ball State University students who attended the Spring 2016 Worship Arts Weekend.

Some comments from the students:
“It is so helpful and transformed what worship looked like on our campus. It also helped to reorient my heart towards God in a powerful way this year and I am so thankful for that.”

“Just thank you. You guys challenged me this weekend, helped me grow and connect with God. You guys taught me so much this weekend and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”


Tuesday was Cru’s semiannual Worldwide Day of prayer, and we were joined by Jeff and Jo Boehlke, our friends from southern Indiana.

Jeff and I both work remotely for the same team in Orlando, and spend a lot of time working together on Cru’s Google system.

Our team is also working on projects to improve Cru’s financial system, web hosting, and other systems. We appreciate your prayers for wisdom and the ability to make quick progress!

Operation Transit

Operation Transit-web

How would you react if you saw hundreds of cars backed up trying to get to a ferry port? I would probably just get stressed, but the founders of Operation Transit saw an opportunity for the gospel.

Each year, thousands of North Africans travel from their workplaces in Europe back home to visit family in places where the gospel is not easily shared. But as they wait in European ports, ministry teams with Operation Transit (a partnership that Cru is involved in) pass out gospel materials. Our friends Allen and Deedee Iobst help lead this ministry and report that teams distributed almost 220,000 items in 2015.

They’ve also been experimenting with different types of technology, which always gets me excited. They’re working on USB thumb drives that will contain gospel materials, and even portable wifi routers that create mini web sites from which passersby can download films and books.

They’re always looking for families and church teams to join them for 12-day sessions throughout the summer. If you’re interested, contact us and we’ll connect you with Allen and Deedee.

God produces a constant stream of encouraging stories from Operation Transit. In their latest newsletter, Allen and Deedee report:

“Recently, five ladies from a couple of churches in Madrid came down to help us with our outreach. One day they faced a day-long downpour. But something extraordinary happened: exactly when the cars drove off the ferry boat, the rain stopped just long enough for effective Bible distribution. Then the rain would start up again, until the next boat arrived! On another day, the same team met increasing opposition from the port police. Then one of the ladies explained: ‘What we are doing is helping you. We are sharing the love of Jesus, and if they accept it, it will change everything for the better.’ The official agreed, saying ‘I didn’t realize that.’ He went on to explain our outreach to his colleague. After that, the same port police who had been discouraging the work began actively encouraging travelers to accept the gospel packets!”

Because of the location of this work, they have also been wrestling with how to respond to the refugee crisis. “We can respond to the newcomers with fear, or we can respond with love. We can realize that the Lord may be sending people into Europe not just to find safety or jobs, but also to find God’s grace. We can choose to take the opportunity to share God’s love in truly helpful ways.” Please pray for these opportunities!