Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Thanks for your prayers

We are home!!We were so incredibly blessed to be able to go to the ends of the earth and find our God at work there also.He showed us how big His world is and also a glimpse of His power and might.We thank everyone who held us up in prayer and communicated with us.We pray that we will not forget the many things God tried to teach us and to hold His people all over the world up in prayer as they face things we don't even comprehend.God Bless You!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Last Days

We are waiting to be picked up for the airport.Ready to go and yet reluctant.We have had some incredible adventures these last few days. I'll list just a few.

1. Saturday morning Tracy and Charles went back to the farm.I was to go to work with Josephine which I was not looking forward to.We are great friends but she speaks no English and I speak no French!!God had yet another lesson to teach me.She works with AIDS orphans.On Saturdays they conduct Bible classes for 60 kids.I peeled potatoes for 2 hours with 5 Rwandan women who spoke no English.We had the best time.Half the time I think they were laughing at me!Just like at home women love to fellowship over food.Then we sang and danced for 2 hours with the children.A youth group from Norway showed up to help.More fellowship.A great day!

2.Sunday morning we attended services at the Presbyterian church with Charles and family at 9:00.We sang familiar tunes in French.We communed with them(white bread and apple juice).We were hugged by everyone there.Then Tracy spoke at 11:00 English service.People from all over the world who are living in Kigali come to this .Great fellowship.They use the same hymnal we do at BCF.God's world is so big.

3.Sunday afternoon we went not far(this is Charles uniform answer for how far something is!)2 hours to a village where Charles was to represent the bride's family to allow a couple to start preparing for marriage.Negotiations between the brides and grooms family.Great food and very interesting.

4.Supper and worship last nite at Charles'. More good food.We were served pasta and sauce similar to home.Charles and Josephine have 4 of their own children and have raised around 9 other orphans from the genocide.Worship in French and English. Singing "God be with you 'til we meet again" in 2 languages.

The Last Days

 Tracy and Charles
  Planting coffee
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A pre-wedding service Charles was leading

Friday, February 13, 2009

For Ricks and for Susannah

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I am sitting at the Bourbon coffee shop in Kigali that has wifi.I can publish a post in around 5 minutes.I feel like a spoiled American once again.Kigali is a very modern city.Very clean and well kept.They are trying to overcome the past.
We arrived here Wednesday and could not find a hotel.Charles had not reserved one yet.The whole city was full.We finally found one at the Iris Guest house.Very American prices.We are paying $8 for 2 cups of coffee.!Everything is expensive here.One difficulty is French is spoken here.We went from feeling at home in the small town of Kabale to being strangers and pilgrims here.
We left Wed afternoon for Lake Kivu.It was probably the most beautiful place I have been.The next morning we went 2 hours up the bumpiest dirt road ever to a memorial site.Here the Tutsis had fought back.60 thousand people were killed on this hill.There is no way to describe being in such a magnificent place with so much sorrow.There is a room once again filled with skulls and bones.When you think about putting a face and a soul to each one its almost more than you can bear.our guide survived,she was 8 at the time and was left an orphan.Then 2 more hours of bumpy road.I missed having Chad and Maria to bump along with!
My free internet is about to expire. It costs $6 to use at the hotel.I am alone in Kigali.Tracy,Charles and Charles brother went to the farm to plant 600 coffee plants.This is land that Charles' family lived on before the genocide.He lost about 60 family members at that time.It has been too painful for him to go back until recently.One of the goals of this trip was to help Charles replant some of the farming.Tracy met Charles on a trip to Uganda in 2005 and they became fast friends. As there is no facilities there I elected to stay here.Our hotel is just a short walk from here.I pass very close to the president's residence and walk right by the Mille Collines(Hotel Rwanda)so I do feel very safe.This is the first time Tracy and I have been apart for 3 weeks!Tonight we are having Bible study with some people we met last year.
In 5 days we will be seeing 5 very special little people(and also some very special big people).Can't wait!!!


 The Presbyterian Guest House on Lake Kivu

  Tracy and Charles
 This boy had made a violin out of a water bottle ,string, and sticks. Sounded pretty good.They sang and danced.I almost was mobbed when I got out candy!
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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Goodbye to Kabale

 1000+ students singing God be with you til we meet again
  2 of the students who accepted the Lord a year ago when we were here and their teacher Olivia

 Telling Lobox(one of our students goodbye)
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Tracy and Joab

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

At Home-Away from Home

Our time in Kabale has come to an end.We are leaving in the morning for Rwanda.We miss everyone at home so much but there will be an empty place in our hearts for the people we love here.We are placing in God's hands our future involvement here at Kabale Trinity College.We have spent the last 2 weeks getting to know so many people.They have faced so many more trials in life than we have.

Just a few examples-

1.A young man who has lost both parents to AIDS.He is also positive.People tell him he is worthless.He lives with an uncle who tells him one meal a day is enough.

2.A young girl who testified in the chapel yesterday was an orphan.The aunt that was raising her and 4 other family members were killed in an accident.She was praising God for help with her school fees.

3.A young man lost parents in the Rwandan genocide and lived on the street from age 5 to age 8.
Someone found him and paid for him to go to school.

4.A young man whose father had 2 wives told us of hiding from place to place in the genocide.One night they hid in a church and left.The next day everyone there was killed.

This is just everyday life for a lot of them.Just having food for the day is a blessing.

Charles will be at the border tomorrow and we will be going to Kigali.We have plans to travel to Lake Kivu,hold 2 Bible Studies,Tracy will be preaching at Charles church Sunday morning and whatever else charles has planned.I am not sure if I can post in Kigali .Thanks for all your prayers.Home is looking nearer and dearer all the time.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Life at Kabale Trinity College

For some reason i am not able to publish text and pictures together anymore.No Justin I dont know what I am doing different.Its hard to have your tech guy so many miles away.
things are going well we have spent a lot of time getting to know the staff and students these last few days.They really open up.Some amazing lives. when I have more time I might tell some of their stories.Serving the Lord is paramount here.

Iwill explain the last group of pictures.

1. One of the teachers eating lunch-beans and poshe

2. the sponsored students-we met with them yesterday.Never doubt your sponsorship. They all told their stories.they pray for their sponsors daily.

3.students arriving at school

4.Olive the school nurse and I waiting and waiting for the medical supplies to be packed.
Olive and I are the same age and have a special relationship.We pray for each others children.When she saw me this time she said"Mary you look so good.You have grown quite fat."
I think that was a compliment!!!
2 hours on the computer time to go.Tracy is in the coffee shop pictured.

God bless Everyone!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

God at work

No pictures today.It takes about one hour to post 3 pictures then if the power blinks off and on you lose it all!!
We have had an interesting few days more rain than we have ever seen.We have been spashed from head to toe on purpose from by passing cars.walked thru puddles 4 inches deep and slid down several hills.This computer is in another language and I cant find
any puntuation by what the keys say.

We have been learning to wait on the Lord every moment.We have so many wonderful expierences and met so many people.Our program at the school keeps getting pushed back with the rain and redoing testing.

Praise items- A hot shower this morning -one of the first.A hair dryer that has not yet blown up-close a couple of times-no sickness-great food-usually.

Things I am learning-eat what we are served-use whatever toilet is available-Americans are very impatient-dinner might be served in 1 1/2 hrs.All the while we are served by the most gracious polite people we have ever met.

Our next few days are very busy-hopefully.we have 5 hour chapel on Sunday dinner at the white Horse with the staff dinner at some missionaries from Michigan we met. They have a son named Elliot!!Tracy teaching classes-me talking to girls-meeting with sponsored students-seeing Pastor Johnson-seeing friends from australia-everything will happen the last few days.
We were walking last nite and went by Elis house.He helped design the school.They invited us in and we had wonderful fellowship.God has allowed to be with so many incredible people.
Going to go while there still is power.Thanks for all your prayers.We miss home but have seen Our God work in so many ways.

Tracy and Tracy

We traveled up the steepest muddiest road ever to see Jackson"s parents and their village.We only thought it rained the other day!!

The whole village showed up to help push us out of the mud.The school van got stuck twice.

Jacksons parents-they did not believe he knew any white people so went to see them.
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Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Zebras in the wild.Almost made up for Tracy missing tne superbowl.

This is for Ricks
-she looks beautiful!!

our parents in Africa
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Life is looking good.With 11 hours of sleep and umbrellas and jackets all is well.Tracy and I have an amazing trip.The last few days we have been in waiting mode but things are picking up.We have been able to spend time with people in the town and visit with other Americans around.Life in Africa is just hard.Always power issues,transportation issues,money issues.Today we are going to Jacksons home village.Jackson is the father of small Tracy.Then tomorrow we are shopping for the medical supplies for the school.Thanks for all those who helped with that.Tomorrow afternoon I will be speaking to around 400 of the girls at the school.Please pray for me.Then we will be meeting at various times with the teachers and the students .then they are also ready for Tracy to teach classes.We are praying for times to share Christ.We spent a big part of the day yesterday talking with students and teachers.we talked with Lubbex one of our sponsored students.We met nathans sponsored student-top in the school.He was very grateful.I will post while everythings working and then try pictures.Thanks for your prayers

Monday, February 2, 2009

A friend of Joab's is building a retreat for christian workers on an island of Lake Bunyoni.We went out so Tracy could pray and dedicate it to the Lord.Awesome!!! we will stay out here next time!

Tracy,Brian(our student)Joanna and Joel(Joabs kids)

The view

supper at Joab and Connies-delicious
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A rainy day in Kabale

This is my second try.We headed out this morning in the beautiful sunshine and it rained and rained and rained.of course we had no umbrella or jackets!!we were soaked.This has been the story of our day.Man proposes and God disposes!!!The rain changd many things for us as far Tracy teaching etc.Pray for us as we are a little homesick and discouraged.Excuse my posts as I dont have time for proofreading etc. I will try pictures again tomorrow. We pray for His will and not our own.
This is Jennifer the banana girl.She finds us everyday in town. She said that while watching Obama's inauguration she prayed for Mazhungas(white people)to come to Kabale to buy bananas.!!!of course we did not resist.
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