2014 - January

Dear friends,

I pray you all had a blessed Christmas and that the new year has started well.

2013 ended well for the San Bushmen when the cell group took their provisions through at the end of November. Everyone especially the children were thoroughly spoilt. They all received Christmas gift packs containing clothes, toiletries, sweets and various  other things like torches. The girls received beautiful  dolls and the boys cars and tool sets. Both the boys and girls also received soccer balls from Build It in Ondangwa.

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Figure 1 Some of the cell group with the bushmen

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Figure 2 The vehicles were packed to the

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Figure 3 Showing off their toys

Christmas and the end of December turned out to be bitter sweet for me. It was great to spend my daughter’s last Christmas here in South Africa with her and my family.  It was also a special blessing to  get to spend some time with my son.

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Figure 4 Anre & Anton
This was all the more special because I was  diagnosed with metastatic bone and liver cancer on the 23rd of December.

This came as a huge shock to me because I had been diagnosed with Osteoarthritis in August by Medi Clinic in Ongwediwa. Unfortunately they had misdiagnosed me and it was in actual fact cancer lesions  they saw on the x-rays.

The cancer is far advanced and they cannot operate on the liver. Last week I started with some emergency treatment, which includes radiation. This is just to strengthen the bones and alleviate pain. I will start chemo for the liver once the radiation is finished. If the first course of chemo has no marked affect on the cancer I will not continue with it.

Unfortunately because the cancer is so far advanced in the bones there is the danger of bone fractures. Last December I fractured a rib, which the doctors now say was already caused by the cancer. This means that I am unable to continue working in Ovamboland, something my heart and mind is as yet still unable to accept.

I will however be returning to Ondangwa hopefully around the 10th February to pack up. The Lord has thankfully laid it on three of the CfN  ladies’ hearts to accompany me and assist me in this difficult task. Please pray for a safe journey and for physical and emotional strength for me to do everything in two weeks as I have to be back in Cape Town on the 28th Feb for the next round of  bone treatment. I will be selling the X Trail and  will put the money into a fund, which will enable Christophine to travel around to minister to  the ladies. It will also cover  the second half of Wilhelmien and Selma’ s pre-primary teacher’s course. 

Please will you pray for the CEN ladies, my leaders group and especially for Christophine that the Lord will give her the strength and wisdom to take over from me and continue to teach the ladies. I will be sending study material up for her to use. Also pray that the Lord will raise up other ladies who would be able to assist her. I will keep you updated with how things are progressing with the CEN ladies and will forward prayer requests from them

On a lighter note! The first of two family weddings has taken place. My niece Megan looked beautiful on her wedding day and it was really a blessing to be together with extended family.

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Figure 5 Jesse, Megan & Brent

The next wedding is my daughter’s on the 17th of May. She is busy with wedding preparations and sometimes drags her mom with her.  I have so far  threaded beads and painted hearts. Please pray that the Lord will grant me the privilege of seeing my daughter get married.

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Figure 6 Anre & Justin

Other than that I have peace about my situation. I know that according to Psalm 139. 16 no cancer or chemo can change the amount of days God has set out for me. I have been privileged to serve the Lord for 40 years now and have been blessed in working among the Israeli’s, the Herero, the Ovahimba and the Ovambo people.  For me nothing surpasses the joy of sharing the gospel and seeing God at work in people’s lives.

Thank you for all your faithful prayers, support and encouragement during the time I was up in Ovamboland. I sincerely appreciate everyone’s sacrifices, which enabled me to minister there and I ask that you will continue to keep the people of CEN in your hearts and prayers.

Much love,
Tish

ps. my South African cell no is now 076 632 2054

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