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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

the dawn of hope


Prayer Tour

From April 4th through 6th a group of 5 of us took part in a prayer tour in South Sudan. What an incredible experience to listen to people's stories of how God is working in their lives and ministries and then have the priviledge of praying for them.

At Memorial Christian Hospital in Werkok Rev. and Mrs. Harriman met Jacob Gai, the Hospital Administrator and Dr. Ajak. What do you think Rev. Harriman and Dr. Ajak have in common? Other than both being tall? It was fun hearing them converse in Spanish! Rev. Harriman grew up in Bolivia as an MK and Dr. Ajak attended medical school in Cuba.

In Tonj we visited Sabet and Suzy Kuj and family at the In Deed and Truth compound. They run a bustling clinic and a pastoral training school where we were blessed as we listened to their stories of God at work.
At the Akot Medical Mission we reconnected with many pastors. Below Billy Coppedge greets Pastor Gabriel Amat.
In Lui the team got to hear about Dr. Fraser's faithful testimony as he served in the early 1900's. Fruit continues to be harvested today through the ministry of the Church and church run hospital and school. One key rule of missions came in handy - as seen in this early morning hair washing exercise for Sarah Harriman.
Adaptability is the key!

Tradition!

There are only a few things in missionary life that you can set your watch on but one of those is the WGM Kenya Annual Retreat. Every April the WGM missionaries from Kenya (Sudan and Zambia were invited too!) get together for fellowship, spiritual renewal, and fun. I had the priviledge to lead a session on Transformational Development. The book When Helping Hurts guided our discussion. If you haven't read it I highly recommend it.

High School graduations and retirements in the year ahead are recognized with special parties. This year Chris Stanfield was honored as he will graduate in July. And my good friend Mary Hermiz was honored before her retirement later this year for her 25 years of service as Principal of the Tenwek School of Nursing.
We were hysterically entertained as Barbara Walters (aka Carol Spears - on left) interviewed Mary (aka Robyn Moore - on right). Since Mary was 4 years old all she ever wanted to be was a missionary nurse.

I believe God is still in the business of calling missionary nurses! (doctors and other health professionals too, and farmers, teachers. . . . . )



In the links at the top of this blog entry you can read about several Christian health facilities that we work with. They all need help. Let me know if you'd like to talk about how God might want to use you.

As Rev. Harriman reflected on our prayer tour earlier in the month he described South Sudan as a dry and thirsty land. Visiting at the end of the 6 month dry season you could say it was hot, dry, dusty, and thirsty! Literally of course, but also politically, socially and relationally. The good news is a new dawn is coming to South Sudan. On July 9th South Sudan will become Africa's newest nation.
There is still much to do as the country prepares to divide. There are reports of increasing signs of destabilizing forces. Rebel groups are growing. Pray for the leaders, army, and police. Pray for reconciliation between tribal groups. Pray for peace to prevail in the hearts of all.
On May 2 WGM is sending a team to Tonj to train pastors in Biblical storytelling. Join us in praying for the trainers and the pastors that this method of sharing the Word will show many more of Jesus and his love.
As the dawn of Easter brings new life in our hearts a new dawn is coming to Sudan.

Join me in praying Isaiah 58:8 for Sudan:

Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

Shalom,

joy

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