Dear Friends and Supporters,
This is a report of the first segment of my 2014 African Safari about the Kensington Cares segment, Tuesday to Wednesday, September 2 to 10.
Gloria and I enjoyed a good visit with several of my family on Monday before my send off; Andrew and Ruth Thorogood, and Michael, Christopher and Richard, and Jeff Willner and Stacey Madge, and Max, Jack and Charly, and Zoran and Mina Dragovic.
Kensington Tours has arranged for all of my flights this safari. My flights from Toronto, Canada, to Amsterdam, Holland, to Nairobi, Kenya, were in business class. This meant that I could get good food and rest on my flights to Africa. Kensington offers private guided travel in over eighty countries of the world. My son, Jeff, and son-in-law, Andrew, are principals in Kensington. For more information, please go to; www.kensingtontours.com.
African Mission Services, Thursday to Saturday, September 4 to 6:
Kensington Cares is reinvesting funds from Kensington Tours in Masai Mara West. This project is administered by Andrew and Francis Aho, Seventh Day Adventist missionaries from the United States. Andrew has built a tourist hotel with cabins, tents, and camping facilities. His camping facilities can accommodate as many as sixty-five volunteers who come to help with construction projects. Already Kensington Cares has assisted in the construction of an elementary and nursery school with 600 students, some of them boarding, and a health clinic. Francis is a nurse practitioner, working with an African doctor and staff.
My accommodations were in a first class cabin with a view of the Masai Mara plain below. The food was fabulous. There were gazelles at my door one morning. Another day, a chimpanzee ambled across the hotel grounds, and there were gazelles and giraffes eating along the hotel driveway.
My assignment from Kensington Cares was to encourage the local village elders to begin construction of a technical secondary school. The school grounds have finally been surveyed with stakes. The chief and assistant chief were going to the country land office to get the title. In a meeting of village elders, parents, and community members, we were assured that the temporary shops which have been built on property designated for the secondary school will be torn down and removed within the month. The people were amazed that a missionary could speak Swahili so well.
On Saturday, I spoke in the Seventh Day Adventist church that Aho has built. The pastor had just returned from seminary in Uganda. There were about fifty members there to receive him. I preached on, We Would See Jesus. This message was about how Jesus came to reveal the Father, that Jesus is not visible in the world today, and that we need to be examples of Jesus in the world today. (John 17:21) The pastor said he had never heard such a word, so he had my notes photocopied.
New Life Covenant Church, Sunday, September 7:
Alfred Kirubi is the senior pastor of this church in Ngong, near Nairobi. They have built a beautiful building with assistance from churches in Ireland and America. I have been in fellowship with Kirubi and others in his fellowship for more than forty years.
The first message was preached by another minister on, Forgiveness. When he said that he believed this message was critical for this church, I felt a real witness. So when it came my time to preach, I continued, saying, our forgiveness is dependent on us forgiving those who offend us, unforgiveness produces sorrow and death, and it can corrupt our compassion with a root of bitterness. I gave the example of the women who are violated by war in Congo have learned to forgive to loose themselves from the shame of rape. I concluded with the story of Aina Flood, the wife of the first Swedish Pentecostal missionaries in Congo. After a year of living in the mountains, she and her husband only had one secret convert, their vegetable boy. Then she died giving birth to her daughter because she was weakened by malaria. Her husband completely gave up, angry with God. He carried the baby down the mountain finding African mothers who would nurse his baby. At Uvira, he gave the baby away to some American missionaries and went home completely dejected. That baby grew, went to Bible college, was married to another Bible school graduate, who went on to become the president of North Central Bible College of the Assemblies of God in America. Later in life, the wife came back to Congo to find her mother's grave, and then went on to Sweden to restore her father. He repented of his bitterness and returned to salvation in God. There was a mighty move of the Spirit as the church people came to the altar to repent. Included was a mother whose shop had burnt to the ground the night before.
Upendo Friends School, Monday to Wednesday, September 8 to 10:
Isabella Mwampamba is the founder and director of Upendo, in Arusha, Tanzania. Her husband and her converted their own house to start this school. Over the past few years, Kensington Cares has assisted with funds to build two classrooms, and to renovate the toilets, among other help.
The school consists of six elementary and three nursery class rooms, offices and library. There are 320 students; 133 nursery students, and 188 elementary students. Some of them are boarding, and some worthy students receive assistance. There are fourteen teachers, six administrative staff, and eighteen other staff. The academic achievement of their students has been outstanding in national standard exams.
The highlight of the two days was the skits, songs, dances, and dramas that each class presented the second day. I was taken on an inspection of the kitchen where I donned a chef's hat and apron and watched ugi (maize porridge) being prepared for nursery students, and ugali (maize meal bread) with beans and greens being served to the other students. The students really impressed me with their extreme politeness, thanking the teachers for their assistance.
Isabella and I spent a lot of time focusing on their next development project; the construction of the second story of the class room block, with facilities for the standard seven class which starts in January, a computer lab, a library, and a faculty lounge. This would allow two of the nursery classes to be moved to the present library so that those classrooms could be converted to a dining hall. Isabella sent me off with lunch at the River Restaurant.
Thank you for your prayers for me as I minister in Kenya.
Pray for the anointing on the Word of God, for traveling mercies, and for health and strength. Praise God that the estimated costs for this safari have been met and surpassed. If you would like to give to support our monthly commitments to African ministries, you can send your offering to one of the postal addresses in the signature block below. May God bless you for assisting this missionary Bible teaching ministry.
Yours together in His Harvest,
Open Word Ministries:
P.O. Box 625, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada L2E 6V5
P.O. Box 5001, Springfield, Missouri, U.S.A. 65801