Friday, May 2, 2014

Transitions to Uganda

Spring 2014 Update
Dear Friends and Family,
I pray this finds you all doing well and seeing signs for warmth that comes with the promises of springtime. Well this finds me in Kampala, Uganda! The Lord has lead me here to help the World Gospel Mission missionaries with the Community Health Empowerment or Evangelism (CHE) program. It has been a wonderful time! I am now in the midst of trying to learn another language, culture and way of living. Although I am in the neighboring country to Kenya, which is where I grew up, things here are not quite the same.

Transitions are never easy; especially when I thought after Christmas I would be going back into South Sudan. There has been unrest going on since December 15th, so World Gospel Mission has decided that it would be better for me to work out of Uganda instead. There is a possibility of going back into South Sudan. If it would become possible to return, I would like to finish up the trainings we started there and have closure with the many friends I made while serving there. You can definitely be praying for that possibility. There are still tribal issues going on with the leaders there. In the Sudan Tribune it was said that, “The United Nations estimates that over 10,000 people have died while a million displaced since the outbreak of the conflict.” This is the current news there and although there are no apparent killings going on in the area that I lived in, there are many people still dying in the country. Please pray for Peace to reign in this nation. Also the rains have now come, and will be there for a good 6 months. Because of this many have already died from unsanitary water and their living situations. Please pray for South Sudan. Pray for their leaders to make good decisions and for empowerment for the Christians to stand and proclaim the Good News!

Traveling to CHE Communities, The Community of Kiriyandongo
In March my colleague and I did some visits to CHE communities. Traveling to get there took us about 4 hours longer than we expected!!! Traveling in Africa is always an adventure! But the Lord was so good; when we finally arrived such warm and welcoming people greeted us. I had never met these people before and they were so happy that we took the time to come and visit them!
They were a joy; we got to meet many people. As you can see in the pictures previously and  the one following, they are people who have joy regardless of their circumstances! At least they smile like they do! Hearing the CHE representative, Samuel, talk about the ways that CHE is helping them was very encouraging. We see that this community is ready for their next training. 
This is one of the things that I am working on here in Uganda, trying to see where the different areas are at in being ready to move forward with the CHE trainings. The CHE program consists of a 4-part training. For each training we do, we try to assess how the people are catching onto the material before we continue to hold future trainings. There have been quite a few years since these groups had training. Our desire is to see these groups continue to move forward with their implementation of the CHE program. In order for this to happen they need to become fully equipped with all that we as CHE trainers can give.This area has many good things happening, but they are also facing many challenges. They have many health needs, and we were able to give them some advice on various issues but they really need your prayers. They desire to grow but there are so many things that are holding them back physically. Pray that their faith would be strengthened with what they can do.
My Colleague Jennifer Wasirimba
My friend Jennifer lives out on an island here in Uganda called, Buvuma. She is Kenyan and her family still lives in Kenya. She has been a wonderful travel buddy to the different CHE communities. She knows the language very well and therefore is a great asset to have along!!! She is also a great translator and awesome motivator for the people we are visiting! Which is exactly what we need to keep people moving forward in their implementation of the CHE program! Jennifer is a registered nurse and is a great resource for the people because many have health issues. Because of these health issues, it seems to us that it holds the people back from being able to move forward with CHE. So it is wonderful that wherever we have gone they are all prepared with their questions for her to answer and help them with! Of course many of the questions she cannot answer, but she can give them some help with what to do!
Prayer Updates & Requests:
Ø  Continue to pray for the opportunity for us to be able to go into South Sudan and do the last CHE training.
Ø  Pray for the country of South Sudan, and continued unrest. Also for those still serving there and trying to point the people to Jesus!
Ø  Pray for protection in traveling, in and around Uganda.
Ø Pray for continued health!

A BIG Thank you!
I wanted to say thank you for all your continued support! Because of all your generous giving we were able to also help some of the other ministries going on in Uganda. I wanted to share with you some about what those are!!
·      The first one being, we helped send money to the Kampala International University Ministry! We have a building that is adjacent to the University and is open for the students to come and get help! We have graduated students who are there to help give them counseling, discipleship and prayer. This ministry provides a safe place for them to go and share what they are going through. Every Sunday we also have a service in one of the University’s lecture halls.

·      The second being, we helped send money to support orphans at a school on the Buvuma Islands.  This money went to help buy children school uniforms, books, and one meal a day. It also went to help the school reroof one of their buildings because one of the big storms that came through tore off their metal roof. (Pictures below)


University Ministries

I have been so blessed to have the opportunity to be a part of this unique ministry with the students from the Kampala International University!  Every Monday evening we have a time to gather and lessons are taught from the Bible! We have a time for sharing and also prayer. Pray with me as I see how the Lord desires for me to get involved with them! Possibly through a Bible study with a few of the girls, or maybe He just wants me to be available to just talk to them. I have been blessed by them all and enjoy so much this chance to get to know them! I wanted you to meet some of the ladies I have met and enjoy getting to know! The ladies with me below are: (left to right) Anita, Phiona, Laila, Natalie and I. They have all either graduated from the University or are currently studying there!  Pray for them and their journeys with Christ!
University Ministry Online:

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