The team for this year’s trip was really small, it ended up with just my wife Muriel and myself.
The trip northwards was, as always, a long one, but it was a pleasant drive and without any serious problems – one flat tyre was the only hiccup.
We stayed at Nakambale as usual and it was great to reacquaint with Maggie who looks after the Museum and Rest Camp.
We spent a total of four days in Ondangwa and during that time we accomplished a great deal which needs to be divided into four areas:
- Re-connecting with past friends. This is always an exciting part of a visit and we were not disappointed. The folk at Proffies School are doing an amazing job - especially the owners, Gerrard and Nicolene Enslin - with the Christ Church Ladies Bible study, Teachers for Christ, educating the Bushman children and a number of other projects. Marieta, Nicolene’s sister, has moved to Ondangwa, and for the foreseeable future is getting involved with the ladies at Christ Church and enjoying it very much. We look forward to seeing what the Lord has in store for her long term. Connecting again with Denys, Chicken and George was great. Please pray for Chicken that he would be able to become more involved in the churches. It was a pleasure to see Christophene again as well as her daughter Selma, but there was sadness there this year as her Aunty/”mom” died and we were able to attend the memorial service.
- Evaluating the work being done at the Pre-Schools. We visited both St Peters and Christ Church Pre-Schools and were encouraged to find them doing well. The attendance of children at St Peters had not grown, but the one at Christ Church had more than doubled in size. The playground equipment we built last year shows evidence of being very well used and appreciated.
- Checking on the progress of the Churches Ladies Bible study. We met with the ladies group and it was really a special time. There were ladies from all 5 churches in attendance and we had a wonderful 3 hours together, discussing issues that relate to them and how best for them to live as Christians. There was deep appreciation for the work our teams had put in over the years and a sincere awareness that if we had not come to tell them the Good News they would still be in darkness.
- Starting the process of planning in the local churches for what the team will do next year. We encouraged the leaders to begin discussions with the leaders and members of each of the 5 churches. Denys, Chicken and George need to formulate a plan for what they would like us to do when we visit in 2016. We would like the churches to take ownership of what we do and where possible, to be involved themselves. We look forward to what will emerge and where we can best supply their spiritual needs going forward.
Our return journey was a little longer as we took 4 days getting back, but this proved to be a wonderful opportunity for us to discuss all that we had done, people we had met with, debriefing gradually as we journeyed. Despite there only being the two of us, we had a really good trip and God blessed and encouraged us. We are truly thankful for our time spent with all the folk in Ovamboland.