Someone got our goat!

Trip Start Jul 04, 2010
Trip End Jul 23, 2010

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Where I stayed
back home in the Methodist Guest House

Flag of Kenya  , Nairobi Area,
Sunday, July 25, 2010

The End of the Journey

Thursday, we used the day mostly for packing, but we worked in also a short visit with Pastor Bobby from Machakas, as he laid out the design for the building campaign there and at the small Kamba church up the hill. Then there was lunch with George Njunge, who had been with us at Chatham, long-time Superintendent of the Sunday School, Civil Servant, and special friend also of Pat Nordman's.  And later Jane Gitubia and Elder Harrison Kabage took Ann and me to see a pre-fabricated house which they thought might be a possibility (another configuration, of course!) for the Mukuru Redeemer Church.

Ran out of on-line time, and the internet at the Methodist Guest House seemed to be intermittent, so I decided to wait until we got home (late on Saturday! – Heathrow its usual problems, congestion, only one runway serviceable for traffic in and out, that sort of thing!) to finish up!

We reconnected with Veronica Muchiri (Woman’s Guild – singular, not plural, my mistake!), whom we had stood up the first Friday.  We met her at the "Mother Church, “in the heart of town, St. Andrews, and bought a couple more pieces at the gift shop run by the Woman’s Guild, benefitting a very special project of theirs, the Tumaini Children’s Home, in Ngong, just outside Nairobi.  Hezekiah Muraya met us there and had a few more gifts to find space for in our already nearly packed luggage.  He is working on his paper, seeking to integrate the church’s teachings on Christology with the “Medicine Man" – so-called, the traditional wise one and counselor, arbitrator and healer of the village.  I’m promising to do some bibliographical work for him when I’m home!

Then Veronica took us out to the home, stopping first at the shopping center to buy some things for the children, milk, fruit, and vegetables.  The home serves children with AIDS, many of whom had been abandoned, or given up for lost by their families (and others!  -- the men in some of their meetings said, in effect, “why waste your time on these children, who are about to die anyway?  Are you just planning to bury them somewhere?”  Veronica and her women responded, “If we can give them the love of Jesus and let them know they are loved, even for a day, it will be worth it!”

We had lunch with 15 children, 10 girls and 5 boys.  They sang us several welcome songs, before returning to their activities:  nap and classes.  This group is “home schooled,” while another group is off to school, integrated into the regular school classes.  What a marvelous experience!  The children, nourished with love and good food, and getting the proper medications, are doing well!  Some have even been returned to their homes, monitored to be sure that the regimen of medicine and nutrition continues without a break!  The home is truly an “oasis” in the midst of the place, with additional building under way, and a huge waiting list to get in to the program!

They smothered us with hugs and hands, Sabrina’s hair especially sought after, but each of us had a small group latching on to us as we circled for prayer.   “What wondrous Love!”  “It is no secret, what God can do!”

Our farewell dinner was at the City Cabana, a former night club, which for us had the advantage of being, 1) well guarded in a secure lot, since all of our luggage was packed and crammed into the van, with Michael our driver standing additional guard, and 2) very close to the airport.  Several of our friends with whom we had met were tied up with other meetings, but several from the Partnership Board joined us for a final evaluation and “wrap up.”  Also, it was the first time for roasted goat.  Jane Gitubia and Harrison and Esther Kabage joined us also with a few more gifts, some from Harrison’s store, which Esther now minds most days so Harrison can be free to pursue the ministries with the church in Mukuru.  He was formerly one of the church’s evangelists, and still has the evangelistic fervor unabated!

We left a good portion of ourselves there in Nairobi, some funds for the gravel for the school yard at the Soweto Education Center, some funds for the new “contingency fund” for the sponsored students, especially those in the Kibwezi area, and many promises to keep!  We are filled with lots of new ideas which we have begun to discuss with our friends on the Partnership Board, which will move the Partnership into some very active and vibrant new forms of life and work!

Henry Kaira, just elected to the position of Moderator of the Partnership Board, will be leaving the post to his Vice-Moderator, Pastor Thegu.   Henry will be coming to the States in the fall, Columbia Seminary, Decatur, GA to pursue graduate studies, and will meet us at the October Kenya Mission Network in Atlanta.
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