March 7, 2013
As our friends & family on the east coast being to start their day, we have just made our way back to the flat (apartment) we are staying in after a full day in town. The morning started off with a wonderful breakfast with Keith & Lisa at Terry & Deborah Nester's house, missionaries here from Roanoke VA. Then it was off to town to go our separate ways for the day.
Jeff went the the flat to hang out, while I headed to the crisis pregnancy center (this is a ladies only center). The group for today consisted of 7 young ladies, under the age of 19, 2 were pregnant & 5 had infants ranging from 6 weeks to 6 months. In a society where girls and women do not have a voice & are often
not afforded education or training, to be a teen mother is especially
difficult & life threatening for both mom & baby. Add to that
the communicable diseases that spread rampantly here their odds of
survival are very low. The focus of the center is to provide Godly support & encouragement so that mom & baby are able to stay together, be healthy, & have a start for their future, such as continuing with their education. I was so impressed with the program as they have a holistic approach - physical, emotional, & spiritual.
As the moms started coming they were greeted by Sarah & Rachel, served a cup of tea & some samosa's (similar to a small pizza pocket, but filled with beef & vegatables), & then given their individual journal book to record their thoughts, prayer needs, & answered prayers. Each baby is weighed & temperature is taken. There is a quick assessment of the mom & baby, for example are they sick. All of this information is recorded to the center is able to track the health & needs of the moms & babies.
After tea there is a program. Today Sarah taught on TB & HIV - what it is, how it spreads, prevention & treatment. The girls has lots of questions, as often happens here due to the lack of proper education on such topics. Then it was time for a devotion from the Bible.
There were several things that really stuck out to me. The relationships that these young ladies are forging with each other provide a support system they normally would not have.They were so relaxed, laughing & talking to each other, playing with each others babies. They had a sense of hope for their futures. They were engaged and anxious to learn & understand the teaching. What a blessing for them & their beautiful babies!
"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes say my unformed body; all the days ordained for me where written in your book." Psalm 139:13-16
The need for such work here is so great. This was so evident later in the afternoon when I got a call that one of the young moms, who had gone to the hospital 2 days ago to deliver, baby died in utero today. Sarah was there at the hospital to purchase the required items for surgery (yes, you have to purchase your required items for treatment BEFORE they will treat you) then they were preparing to take Vickie to surgery to remove the baby. Such situations here are very life threatening for the mother. Please keep Vickie in your prayers.
Jeff met me in town & we meandered about some looking in the various shops that line Main Street. We had friends coming to meet us for lunch. Little did we know we would have several wonderful reunions! Richard & Godfrey came by - we have know them since our first trip in 2000. They have grown into wonderful young men. It was great to hear about their lives and what God is doing in and through them. Then our "expected" guest arrived, Pastor Samuel & Bruhan "Bull" from Pallisa. We have know Samuel & his parents since 2001 & have worked with them on several occasions over the years. Bull & Jeff instantly formed a close bond in 2010 while we were working in Pallisa. Bull has such a love of the Lord & is studying at seminary here - when he is not in school, he is preaching. We had a wonderful lunch catching up on everything in each other's lives and talking about what the future holds. It looks like Jeff & I will have to be back in 2015, not that I would not be back several time before then, for Bull's graduation.
God is good - all the time! All the time - God is good!
Blessed to be here! Praying you have a blessed day!