Following the Wild Goose to Pennsylvania –
The Rosen’s Prophetic Journey Back to Our Home State.
Our Journey from Vermont
I was born in Philadelphia and my wife, Terri, was born in New Jersey. We lived in the beautiful state of Vermont for over 18 years, raising our family there and serving the body of Christ there and throughout New England. Our daughter, Nina, attended Berklee School of Music in Boston and now lives in Philadelphia. Our son, Josiah, is in middle school and lives with us.
Below is the unfolding story of our family’s journey back to Pennsylvania and what we believe to be our heavenly Father’s heart and plan for us. Although we still don’t have all the answers, we move forward with the assurance of His amazing leadership in our lives, and total confidence that our journey back to Philadelphia is orchestrated by heaven and in concert with destiny for our lives. We look forward to serving alongside many of God’s people for the purpose of the advancement of His kingdom here in Pennsylvania.
Griswold Home Care – Entering the Home Care World
In 2010 I was the primary care director of a detox and recovery center in Vermont called Maple Leaf Farm. Although a great but intense job, I started getting a desire to launch out and exercise my entrepreneurial gifting which resides in our family line and start our own company. It was a big step of faith but after a lot of due diligence, prayer and counsel, Terri and I agreed to purchase a non-medical home health care franchise called Griswold Home Care.
Griswold Home Care started over 34 years ago in Erdenheim, PA in a church as a volunteer “sitting service” for the elderly. Over the last 30 years, their mission has expanded to over 225 locations in 30 states. We are currently in our seventh year of operation in Vermont and we have over 40 caregivers serving seniors throughout Vermont. Our corporate offices in Vermont are housed in a 4000 square-foot space which we share with the Alliance Resource Center, ARC. This partnership is working very well as activities of ministry and marketplace ministry are linking arms for the kingdom of God in Vermont and the New England region.
Expansion into Pennsylvania.
About four years ago I got the leading to consider purchasing another franchise. Our thoughts at that time were to stay in Vermont and find another franchise in New England or on the East Coast where I could set a manager in place and still see some good return on my investment. This is where it starts to get interesting concerning our journey to Pennsylvania.
The only pre-existing Griswold Franchise for sale at the time was in Cumberland County, PA which is on the West Shore area of Harrisburg. The office is one of the oldest in the company having started over thirty years ago. The previous owner had the franchise for over eleven years and was in a place of burn-out when wanting to sell. This Griswold Home Care location initially got my attention partly because of a twelve year journey the Lord has led our family on in relationship to the Original Host Peoples of this land, the American and Canadian Indians.
In 2008, I was ordained under Chief Kenny Blacksmith, the National Honorary Chief and former Deputy Grand Chief of the Cree Nation. I was also adopted into the Mohawk Tribe by Pastor Willie Jock from Akwesasne, New York. Through these relationships and my own studying, I was made aware of the atrocities and broken covenants of our nation with the original Host Peoples, specifically in relationship to this region where Terri and I were looking at purchasing another Griswold Home Care territory.
Carlisle is a prominent town in Cumberland County, PA and was the first Indian Residential School pioneered for American Indians in the United States. The goal and intent of the schools was to basically “save the man and destroy the Indian boy” by removing the Indian children away from their families, relocating them, stripping them of their language, their music, their culture, their food and anything familiar to them. This became a model for many schools throughout North America and had many horrific consequences, which included great abuses against these precious children. Thank God the schools no longer exist! Ironically, today the US Army War College is located on the same land as this former residential school. Willie and Sandi Jock, and many other Native American people we know, have conducted significant intercessory prayer and reconciliation journeys here. This initially gave me the green light in my spirit to continue to explore the purchase of this Cumberland County Griswold Home Care franchise in Pennsylvania. It was only 10 minutes away from where the residential school first existed and it felt as if God was invested in doing something in this area, and to say the least, that got my attention!
Negotiations for the Cumberland County, PA office started in April 2012 and were finalized via email when our family was in Jerusalem in July 2012. Terri and my intention was to live in Vermont, but as we got closer to the closing date for this office, Terri felt a strong leading by the Lord that she was supposed to run the office in Pennsylvania. So, we decided to go as a family to explore this possibility. This was in August, and we only had 72 hours for all the details to get sorted out, including finding a place to live and the school for Josiah. Not only did the Lord miraculously work out all the details for us in the short period of time, but He also answered the desires in our heart to be closer to our own aging parents and family who live only two hours away!
There is so much more supernatural favor that happened during that pivotal weekend, but I will share that for another time! One testimony that I will share is that Terri had a vision of the house we would be living in and that we would be living on the street whose name was called something like Lamp Stand or Menorah. Well to make a long story shorter, the address of the new home we rented was on Lamp Post Lane and looked just like the house in her vision. Not only that, but when we got to the house that was for rent, Josiah got out of the car and prophesied for the first time saying “This is our house. I’m telling you this is our house!!” He was right! God is so good!
Life in Camp Hill
So, fast forward, we sold our house in Vermont in three months and moved into the house on Lamp Post Lane, Camp Hill in the beginning of August, 2012. We closed on the business in September 2012 and as I write, we have just celebrated our fourth anniversary here. We have three full time Care Coordinators and part time marketer/community relations person, a recruiter, as well over ninety caregivers serving many clients through the Cumberland County, PA region. We were able to find the right person to hire to run the office in Vermont, though I do a good amount of commuting back and forth between Pennsylvania and Vermont.
Heaven Got My Attention
We have been very content this last year to focus on the businesses and the ministry in Vermont as well as enjoying our family. But since coming back from a trip to Malta and Hurrnhut, Germany it feels like I have been in a whirlwind of heaven’s activities. I feel that there is a real unfolding and revealing of what might be the Lord’s plan for our family by bringing us back to my birth state of Pennsylvania.
Terri and my longstanding friendship and covenant relationship with Jeff Collins and his family, my trip to Cyprus years ago and my recent journey to the Gateways Beyond Hurrnhut base to reconnect with Norm and Lynn Fredricks, as well as what transpired afterward, are not coincidence. They may just be part of a hidden seed of destiny, in a great back story of an inheritance that the Lord may cause to be (sprouting) at this time. I also believe the piece of my family’s history in Pennsylvania is important in relation to all of this as well. Here’s why.
I was born in Philadelphia, PA in 1961. My great grandfather settled in Philadelphia around early 1900. He emigrated from the Ukraine and after a long season of getting acclimated, he worked as a painter and then he started selling gas lanterns. He opened a company called Progress Lighting, then under the leadership of my grandfather, Reuben Rosen and my uncle Maurice Rosen. Progress Lighting became one of the largest manufacturing lighting companies in world, sending lighting from Pennsylvania to the nations! Our family took this company public and eventually sold it in the late 1980s. I always suspected as a believer that there was some spiritual significance to this story, lighting up the world, that had to do with the advancement of the Kingdom of God on the earth for my life.
The Book “Seed of a Nation” – April, 2012
We were living Vermont and I was visiting my Dad in Philadelphia to talk with him about the Griswold Home Care business we eventually purchased. During that trip which was only two days, I got a call from a fellow in Maryland that I didn’t know. He wanted to recruit me to be the State Coordinator for Vermont for a big gathering called “America for Jesus” in Philadelphia. What was interesting about this call was that the gentleman starting taking about a book called Seed of a Nation, written by Darrel Fields.
.It is the story of William Penn, the founder of Pennsylvania, and his vision and dream that Pennsylvania would be a holy experiment that would become a seed and a precedent for the whole nation. This book also describes William Penn’s covenant love and honor for the Original Host Peoples of the land.
What he didn’t realize, and what quickly got my attention, was that the only book I happened to grab off of my bookshelf at home before leaving on this trip, and it was the very the book he was talking about! I was given this book a few years before but never read it – until now! This seemed like a sign from the Lord to me, so that I did agree to help with this gathering, largely because of this unique encounter.
Divine Access to the State Capital Building
Fast forward six months later to September 27, 2012. I was now living in Pennsylvania. It is the night before the “America for Jesus” event and I got a call from a fellow who had been prayer-walking America for many years. He was visiting every State Capital in fifty days just to pray for that state. He invited me to meet him to pray at the State Capital in Harrisburg.
Although conflicted about my leadership role and having to be in Philadelphia that night for the youth rally for “America for Jesus,” I felt a strong leading to join him. So I was a part of a ragtag team of three who ascended the front steps of the State House to pray at 7:30 PM on Shabbat , that Friday evening. We marched past the signs that said “Closed” and began to pray at the doorway of the Capital building. Just as we were ready to leave, after our prayer time, a police officer on the inside of the Capital building whom we didn’t see beforehand, unexpectedly waved us in to enter.
As it turned out, this police officer was a believer and was miraculously healed of cancer when Jesus came into his hospital room ten years ago! He walked us past the security equipment and into the center of the Rotunda where we all held hands, the police officer included, and prayed for America as the sound echoed through the halls of the chambers of the State Capital building. To my amazement, as I looked up, I saw bold letters encircling the dome of the Rotunda, the words of William Penn “A Seed of a Nation.” What a supernatural night!
Following the Wild Goose.
It was now September 18, 2013. For four to five days after my return home to Pennsylvania, I witnessed a very unusual number of Canadian Geese landing in the creek behind our house. I would say close to a thousand or more geese. In the evening there would be a cacophony of honking coming from the creek in our backyard, and in the morning the geese would form into their flocks and take off one flock at a time. It was like squadrons of fighter planes lining up to take off for an important mission. Norm Fredericks comment which I heard during my last morning in the Hurrnhut Germany Mission base during our worship time resonated in my ears: “Follow the wild goose,” referring to the Celtic term of going after the Holy Spirit. So the great number of the geese certainly got my attention and I knew the Lord wanted to show me something significant.
The following Monday, September 23th, immediately after praying for the Lord to unfold His plan in Pennsylvania for our family, I received a text from Mohawk leader, Willie Jock, who happened to be in Pennsylvania. He wanted me to meet him at a particular farm for prayer as some burden was on his heart concerning healing of the land. It was only an hour from my house so off I went on another adventure. Right before I left home, I again for some reason, grabbed the book Seed of Nation, thinking I might get a chance to read some of it later in the day.
I arrived at this historic farm site a little before Willie and to my amazement Willie was not alone in the van when he pulled up. The author of the book Seed of a Nation, Darrel Fields, stepped out of the van along with a German descendent of the Moravian Church from Hurrnhut. When I saw Darrel I knew that this was a divinely arranged moment of destiny and I needed to pay attention to what was about to happen. Pastor Willie gathered all of us together including two young Mohawk youth from his territory and began to share his burden for bringing us all here. For the sake of time I won’t share all that he did but only the highlights.
Conrad Weiser Farm-Pastor Willie Shares
The farm where Willie had us meet was that of Conrad Weiser who, around the time of William Penn, had been a farmer but he had also learned the Mohawk language and had been adopted into the Mohawk tribe. Conrad was also the main translator for William Penn and had helped Penn in establishing a peaceful covenant with the Lenape, Shawnee and the Iroquois Confederacy early on in the formation of Pennsylvania.
Conrad Weiser also brokered an historic meeting on his farm with Count Zinzendorf and the Iroquois and Mohawk chiefs. Through Conrad, the Count was able to share the Gospel and asked them if they would allow him to bring this message to their people. After sleeping on it, the Iroquois chiefs said yes. But the sad part of this is that Count Zinzendorf had promised to come but he never did. You could see Willie’s tears for what could have been a reality for his people if this promise had been kept. Pastor Willie and Darrel Fields expressed that if the Moravians came as promised to the Iroquois people at that time, history could have been rewritten and so much potential bloodshed might have been averted, including the French and Indian war.
Repentance and Forgiveness
I am not a historian but I realized that I was witnessing a uniquely powerful moment as I continued to watch as a German descendent of the Moravians got down on his knees before Willie, and the two young warriors with him repented on behalf of Count Zinzendorf and his broken promise. Then, I watched as Willie and the young men released forgiveness to this man with many tears shed by everyone present. We all felt like an ancient window that had long since been closed was now open and what could have changed the course of history then was now a new possibility for heaven’s purpose for today.
So many questions began to emerge within me. Could Pennsylvania perhaps be given a new birth to go after its original mandate to be a seed for the nation and a holy experiment and precedent for this continent? What would have happened if the Moravian lamp stand had gotten a hold of the whole league of the Iroquois nations then?
What might be opening up for the Gospel to affect the original Hosts Peoples of North America now? Could a residential school that was once in the region to harm the First Nations people now lead to a new reformational school and training place for a new breed of First Nations warriors for the Gospel? I went home that night emotionally undone and still swirling with questions from the day. My wife, Terri, knew of the unique journey surrounding the book, Seed of a Nation, and she was also touched by the uniqueness of this moment as I showed her Darrel Fields signature on my copy as proof of what had transpired that day.
As I thought about all that had taken place, I knew my trip to Hurrnhut, walking that land and drinking deeply of that ancient well of history in God, was profoundly significant for my life. And I knew my coming back to Pennsylvania, my birth state and my family back-story in the lighting industry was also highlighted in my Spirit. I had a vision a few days before.. I saw many youths standing separated by some 30- 50 feet from one another in the place where the geese had landed behind our home. I also saw Jewish prayer shawls and kippahs descending upon them as they all stood there with their heads bowed in a posture of receiving. Considering my life and my Jewish background, I now wondered if all this might in some way touch my Jewish people. Jews have lived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, my own home city, since the arrival of William Penn in 1682.
Was God Telling Me Something?
I called one of my spiritual sons, Jeremiah, excited to tell him this crazy unfolding story and to my surprise he told me that before he came to live with our family in Rutland, Vermont, he had been part of a restoration project on an Indian wooden head, a Tamarind, that was worth millions of dollars which was from the ship named for William Penn. I began to wonder if there was any connection in all this and my life with William Penn.
24 Years Ago at the William Penn Inn
Two years later, we purchased a home and were able to get the last of our belongings that were stored in Vermont back to Pennsylvania. Finally, all our belongings were in one place. One morning in our new home I realized that Terri had hung our beautifully framed wedding invitation on our bedroom wall. As I walked by and read the invitation, to my astonishment, I saw that we were married at the William Penn Inn in Gwynedd, Pennsylvania!! Surely all of this, including our marriage at the William Penn Inn was no coincidence. You just can’t make this stuff up! Only the Father could have so orchestrated our lives in bringing us back here to Pennsylvania and allowed us to see the greater divine purpose and destiny for us to be part of this continually unfolding story of His intention for Pennsylvania and for the First Nations People.
William Penn came here to PA with a vision that was birthed from heaven. Not only for those coming here from other nations, but also for the Original Host People already living on the land. “Pennsylvania would be seed and precedent set for the nations …A holy Experiment” wrote William Penn.
We believe this is a worthy cause and that”s why we are standing with heaven for the destiny of Pennsylvania and what will reach the nations of the earth.