Jambo, friends! Greetings from Mwanza, Tanzania!! It's so great to finally be able to say that to you as it felt like the two-day journey would never end. After 4 flights and some unexpected experiences, I'm happy to say that we arrived safely and we're all ready to serve!
On Saturday, we spent the day at TCRC, the Children's orphanage and school. What a blessing it was to finally see the place we've been praying for and meet the students and other workers face-to-face. We got a tour of the grounds, spent quality time with the students, and participated in a welcoming program.We listened as their Children's choir sang us 2 songs and then we sang for them the 3 songs we had prepared. They were so thrilled that two of our songs were in Swahili and they joined us in singing.After that, Pam did an interactive lesson on the armor of God. It really broke the ice with the kids and was a great first day!!!!Last night, we were invited to attend a wedding! Some of us walked to the nearby mall with the local Pastor's son and purchased a lovely clock for the bride and groom. The wedding reception overlooked Lake Victoria and was a special time.This morning, Matt preached at a The Igoma AIC Church. What a joy it was to worship the Lord with our Tanzanian brothers and sisters in Christ. We spent the rest of today prepping for the first day of the conference which begins on Monday.Thanks for all your prayers. We can truly feel the Lord's presence and protection over us. To Him be the glory!
In Christ's Name, Julie
Pam Scott skipping down the lane with some of the TCRC kids. She is bringing such joy to the kids already, and we are so thankful for her presence on this trip!
This picture is so powerful in so many ways. First, Kim Williamson is wearing the dress that Stella Simbiti made for Pat Hill. What a blessing that Pat's dress is in Tanzania with us! Kim is holding little Jen. We heard her heartbreaking story today. She was deserted by her family just last Thursday. The staff at TCRC found her wandering and crying on the grounds. They are still working through how they can serve this precious little one and are thankful that her parents abandoned her at TCRC instead of killing her, which is often what's done.
The team separated into two groups this morning, with one going to a church where Micah Ngussa was preaching and the other going to a church where Matt Hughes was preaching. Matt gave a powerful message, here being translated by TCRC staff member Moses. The service begin at 7 AM and ended at 10:30! Matt only preached half an hour, but there was lots and lots and lots of singing and sharing and it was a lovely day. We were greeted by 400 people individually afterwards – lots of hand shaking and Christian love!
Katie Scott is quickly winning the hearts of these little ones! She is our designated team photographer and here they all want to see the pictures she's taken of them.
On Monday at 8 AM our time (we are eight hours ahead of Illinois) we will begin our work with the students and teachers of TCRC. During the day we will visit classrooms and lead some individual lessons, and after school we have two sessions each day, Monday through Thursday, to train the teachers of TCRC and surrounding schools. Here Chuck Van Hoorn meets with a physics teacher who was working with students on Saturday, helping them prepare for upcoming exams on August 1.
Julie Horton and Deb Van Hoorn were thrilled to find "baby mangoes" on this tree!