Thursday, January 29, 2009

Bringing Hope... and Maize Flour!

The dirt road to Sena- not to bad for the most part- but there are allways the herds of goats to contend with! We even ran into herds of goats on the EN1 on our way back- the EN1 is similar in concept ( not in quality) to the trans- canada! Other animals we swerved for included a four foot long monitor lizard and a group of baboons. Much to Ricks dissapointment he didnt see any of the Impalas all the signs promised we would see crossing the road.
Once again, Rick and I were blessed to be the "agents of hope" by delivering food to some pastor monitors this week. We travelled up north to the villages of Sena and Chemba, along the Zambezi river and met with 16 of our monitors. The gifts of maize flour we were able to deliver were made possible by generous donations from many in Canada. We now have maize in our storage room to hopefully cover our work for food program needs for the next two "hungry months" as well. God is Good.
It truly was humbling and eye-opening to visit with these pastors and hear their stories. The first group we met with in Sena, had been waiting for our arrival since the morning, and had not eaten all day. I took a lot of pictures, and perhaps its better to just explain each photo to tell the story.

Many of the monitors had to travel long distances on bicycles to recieve the food aid- some as far as 45 Kilometres, including travelling over a several km long pedestrian bridge over the Zambezi River.

Two of the monitors securing 50 kg sacks of maize flour to their bikes. each monitor received 3 sacks, or enough to feed their families for roughly two months.

After spending the night in the "hotel" in Sena (it had no running water :) ) we followed the missions four ton truck down the "road" to Chemba. Again- we were blessed to find that several days of dry weather had made the 45 km's of dirt road drivable- if there had been rain, the truck never would have made it!

This really is a road sign right outside of Chemba town. It is located next to the path where folks go down to wash clothes and bathe- hippo and crocodile attacks are a regular occurance.

The monitors in Chemba arrived late in the morning- after paddling for more than four hours across the Zambezi River in a canoe similar to this one.

I love these pictures- Here the monitors are listening as Pastor Ricardo explains that only those who work recieve payment- and because they have faithfully served God, He has provided a miracle of food donations to help them in their time of need.

Here (about two seconds later) the pastors listen as Ricardo explains that they will be recieving food. You can see some of them are starting to understand ....

Here Pastor Ricardo explains they will be receiving three sacks EACH. (see his hand in the corner??) I think the smiles say it all- after this point I switched to my video camera because they started clapping, hooting and saying Obrigado (thank you) over and over again. I thought Pastor Piri (white shirt, right hand side) was going to cry!

On the drive home we got to see an amazing storm roll across the sky, and I managed to get some really neat pictures.

All in all it was a great trip, and we were glad for the opportunity to meet and fellowship with the pastors. The rest of this week is just flying by as we attend the opening ceremonies for our primary school as well as the escolinha (preschool). Saturday we will be attending ASAM's annual general meeting and then on Sunday we head down to South Africa one last time before Dwight and Lynn leave for a quick furlough in early March. Please pray for safe travel down the EN1- which I promise to take pictures of this trip! We have a lot of errands to get done, as well as checking out possibilities for a new vehicle. After a quick two weeks we will be heading back up here- just in time to start preparing for Dwight and Lynn's departure- ahhhhhh! Im sure we will be fine! God Bless, Rick and Heather


Carol said...

Wow this is so amazing and nice to see. I love following your blog and seeing all what God is doing through wonderful people like you! God Bless you and in all your doing!
I Love all the pictures. It really gives you a feel for whats happening.
You all are so awesome!

Francois & Alta Rauch said...

Thanks you guys ... great article.