2013 - November

Dear friends,

The end of another year is fast approaching.

Once again this is a lengthy newsletter but as always the Lord is merciful and it has been exciting to see him at work in people’s lives.

The ministry to the San Bushmen has been a major highlight this year. It is such a pleasure spending time with them, the change in all the people is very evident. Their faces are now open and expressive when they greet us. The children are clean, their clothes are clean and they are much healthier. We thank the Lord for this.

We also praise him for what he has done for Tutaleni (Tangeni), the little boy who could not walk. He is up and about.

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Figure 1 This photo was taken in April

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Figure 2 This one was taken end October

 

We have managed to solve the problem of getting them clean water. Previously they were not allowed to fetch water at the tanks because they could not pay for it. Each family has to pay a monthly fee. Through the months we struggled to take water to them because of the condition of the sand track to their village.

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Figure 3 The first of two tyres to go on this trip

We have now arranged with the council member of their region that we will pay for their water. Unfortunately we have not yet managed to get them registered for government aid. This is now becoming crucial as Dare to Care’s financial aid will soon end. I have been to Social services and am still waiting for them to come  back to me.

Sad news is that I am no longer doing the NETS study group at Oluno Rehabilitation Centre due to problems with the translator. The good news is that the NETS coordinator’s wife has taken over from me. She is Ovambo speaking, which solves the interpreting problem.

The various bible studies have progressed well this year. Christophine and I finished with Veritas and it has made a marked difference in her understanding of the bible. Christophine has also taken over translating for me as Rauna is working fulltime. Meme Asnath sometimes helps out with the translation. The leaders group continue to grow in their understanding of the bible and in their relationship with the Lord.

I thank the Lord that he has called Wilamien to lead Christ Church’s youth choir. She also does a bible study with them. The name of the choir roughly translates  to “Come neighbour, let us go and tell people the gospel”.

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Figure 4 Wilamien Simson

At  St Peter’s and Christ Church we have run the program called ‘You are valuable to Jesus’ with the Sunday School children. Next year we will continue with the other congregations.
This is a program that is much needed here in Ovamboland and I am hoping to encourage other churches  and pre-primary schools to run it as well.

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Figure 5 Meme Emilia doing the program at Christ Church

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Figure 6 Christ Church Sunday School busy with the You are valuable program

 

Proffies for Christ is always a joy but they certainly keep me on my toes with questions such as ‘Is it possible for a Christian to commit suicide and if he does will he still go to heaven, is TB Joshua a true prophet’?  These are mostly learners in grades 5-6. There is a group of them that are definitely saved and are growing in their relationship with the Lord. ‘Thank you Lord’.

Two weeks ago the principal Nicolene had the privilege of leading another Proffie learner to Christ. He went to her in tears saying he could not continue in the life he was leading. Last week in the prefects and teachers meeting this same learner stood up and testified that it was now going well with him since Christ had come into his life.

The bible study with Prof teachers has continued to go slowly due to the time we have (only 45 min) and all the questions they ask. But even in this group the work of the holy Spirit is clearly evident in some of their lives, especially in Koneka’s life. Photo below.

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Figure 7 Koneka, a teacher at Prof School


Last weekend I was with the teachers and grade 7’s at their yearend camp in Tsumeb.  Everyone enjoyed it even though it rained and we were in tents.

Another highlight has been the getting together of the Afrikaans ladies in Ondangwa. We have had monthly meetings and each meeting has had  spiritual input. Our last meeting for the year was Friday and we enjoyed a Christmas dinner together. Each of us had an opportunity to mention something we were thankful for. It was exciting to hear how encouraged they were to regularly meet together and to learn about the Lord.

On the practical side this year, amongst other things  I have measured out holes for  long drop toilets, distributed food to some of the elderly and orphans and gift boxes to the children at the churches. I have also painted and set up a kiddies corner at Christ Church, Ondangwa especially for the toddlers who so often disrupt the services.
Next year I will do the finishing touches and put hard board with pictures on the walls.

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Figure 8 Toddlers’' play corner

 

Christ Church has many babies and toddlers coming for baptism. We are praying that the  mothers will continue to come to church even after the baptism. As has been the case with Leinehilde and her twins Philamon & Heskia. These two little guys are adorable but unfortunately they have taken a liking to Rev Nandi and go to him even when he is on the pulpit preaching.

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Figure 9 Philmon and Heskia

 

During our monthly sewing days we have been making educational toys out of household waste products to help the mothers and grandmothers prepare their children for school.
Next year we hope to take it a step further and set up play schools at two of the churches. At the moment I am busy with the logistics involved and on Wednesday I take two young ladies from Christ Church and St Peter’s through to an Amos course for play school teachers in Outjo.

I want to take this opportunity to thank you all for your love, encouragement, prayers and support during this year. Thank you for your partnership in this ministry and making it possible for me to work in Ovamboland. I sincerely appreciate your generosity and sacrifices.

To God all the glory.
Tish.

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