Friday, October 28, 2011

Faithful men

In this blog I'm going to introduce you to two men who have committed their lives to serving Jesus Christ.  I hope you're as challenged as I am by the commitment they exhibit as they follow Jesus.

People frequently ask me, "How are things in Sudan?"  Along with Dickens I am tempted to reply that, "These are the best of times, these are the worst of times!"

Security in South Sudan is always at the top of people's minds.  In the sites where WGM is working the security situation remains fairly calm - a good thing.  But that is unfortunately not the case for everyone in Sudan and South Sudan.  Read what Nicholas Kristof has to say in last Sunday's New York Times about a former colleague of mine when I worked with Samaritan's Purse, Ryan Boyette.

The article is entitled, "The Man Who Stayed Behind."

Please pray for the people of the Nuba Mountains and along the border of Sudan and South Sudan as they persevere through much hardship.

I'd also like you to meet Adhanom Hidug.  Adhanom joined our Mango Ministry Team in September.

He has just finished up a Masters in Public Health at a University here in Kenya and is also a Clinical Officer. He and his wife and their two small daughters have been living in Nairobi but this is not home for them.  Adhanom was raised in Eritrea.  Who knows where that is?  I'm guessing most of you will have to get googling on that one.

In Adhanom's testimony he explains that he was a good Catholic for much of his growing up years.  Later he came to know Jesus as his personal Saviour and joined an Evangelical church movement.  Life isn't easy for Christians in Eritrea.  Operation World  states that "persecution and restraints on personal freedoms test believers sorely."  Adhanom can personally testify to this yet his faith remains strong. 

For awhile he lived in Khartoum, Sudan then came to Kenya to further his studies.  While in school he became friends with a nurse from Tenwek Hospital who was attending the same school from Tenwek's School of Nursing.  Adhanom shared his interest and call to serve the people of Sudan and Philip shared with Adhanom about WGM's new work in South Sudan.  Can I say the rest is history!

During the past two months Adhanom has been getting oriented.  He spent some time with the staff at Tenwek Community Health and Development.  He attended a week long training in Uganda on Community Health Empowerment (CHE).  He worked at a busy clinic in Tonj, South Sudan getting to understand the health needs of the people, and we visited the area where he will be working most of the time - East Rumbek County, Lakes State.

Today Adhanom is flying back to South Sudan.  We have many questions:  where will he live, will he be able to clean out the carburetor of the motorbike and get it started,  will the people warm up to the ideas of community transformation after forming a relief mentality about development during decades of war?

Starting off on a new venture is exciting too.  We have prayed that God has gone before us to pave the way.  There are new people to meet, new customs to learn, learning of the Dinka language, and really understanding people.

Adhanom's goals for the next two months are these:
      Begin learning the Dinka language
      Learn as much as possible about the community and it's people - in otherwords, he's going to be taking a lot of tea under the mango trees!
     Begin to implement the strategies of CHE - with a seed project
     Encourage the 6 other Sudanese who attended the training with him from Tonj and Lui
     Form a team of champions who will pray for him and contribute to his support needs.

Would you like to be one of his champions?  Shoot me an email if you'd like to be part of his prayer team or if you'd like to contribute to his support needs.

I feel really blessed to be doing what I do and with such amazing people, men AND women.  We could use some help though.  There are incredible opportunities to be a part of God's Kingdom building activities in South Sudan.  Is God calling you to go . . . .  to come and join Mango Ministries?

Here are two hot opportunities:  join a team facilitating transformational development or get involved in training of church leaders.
faithful men and women
is God calling you?

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