August 28th, 2017

August 28, 2017
We have some really good people here with whom we work.  They aren't the ones with titles, salaries or positions, but those who care about what we're doing, work behind the scenes and continually make me proud to work with them.  
Whenever we have a dinner out at the church or boy's home, we have a group of ladies who start the day before, clean beans, shred cabbage and carrots, slice tomatoes and onions, and basically start the cooking.  The process is done outside, in whatever area they can use, in almost a primitive fashion.

They stand, bend over, move back and forth in the sun, which at the equator, is pretty hot.  I tried bending over for a few minutes, doing what they do.  I almost couldn't get back up.

We have a mama, Grace, in our widow's choir that has taken the job of caretaker for a 20 year old severely challenged girl whose mother passed away last year.  The mother's family did not want the burden of the girl and asked Grace, who is not related, if she would take care of her.  She agreed and has continually provided the care needed.  When we are passing out food, Grace always asks for a second bag of rice or beans, for the girl.  Other than that, she works silently in a job that most people would not be able to do.

Grace is a blessing.  Her generous spirit is inspiring.

Mary, the leader of our widow's group, is another woman who has provided assistance to us in many ways.  She goes to visit all 6 of the widow's groups, (which includes many miles of riding on the back of the motorbike) making sure the vulnerable widows are being taken care of, setting up a schedule for other widows to work on the 10 acres of beans, and providing transport to those are sick, to the hospital.   

Mary loves every visitor that comes over, remembers their names and prays for them.  She's another blessing to us.

Richard Mutuwa is our choir director, worship leader and producer of the cd's both choirs make.

Coney met him in Pokot, north of Kipsaina, way, way out in the bush.  He was directing a choir there, performed at a conference Coney was preaching at, and ended up coming to Kipsaina.  His talent is incredible, his legs are probably over 4 feet of his 6+ foot frame.  He dances, sings, hops and gyrates.  Everyone loves it,  Our worship services are pretty wild, everyone is dancing, singing and making noise.  It's fantastic!

Moses has been with us since the beginning.  He has always been a hard worker, faithful to Missions for Orphans and trustworthy. He married Claire last year and the two of them have taken on the pastorate in our new church in Bwai.  They are true servants, always ready to help and do whatever is needed.
The church in Bwai was originally made of mud, which didn't bother them at all.  Claire only asked for a latrine since there was nothing available nearby.  Coney not only built her a latrine but a brick church.  It's the biggest thing that has happened in that village in a long time, and the neighbors gathered each day, watching the progress.  Here's the before church and then the new one.


There are many, many good people who are helping us here in Kipsaina.  These are just a few.  But they stand out because of their unselfish, caring attitude for members of the community.  I appreciate them, and am so glad to be working with them.

Kwaheri from Kipsaina,
Mama Lani


 

July 31, 2017

July 31, 2017
We celebrated our associate pastor Frank's, 50th birthday last Saturday.  It was quite a big deal, he had tents rented for everyone to sit under, live music, lots of good food, and we even had a church service.  He never misses an opportunity. When we arrived, the women, who had all spent the night there and had been preparing the food since early morning, were still putting it all together, cooking the last of it.  So I wandered over in the back of the house, under some palm fronds that shel...
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July 25, 2017

July 25, 2017
Today, I was sitting with Isabel the house mother, drinking tea and realizing how low my "freak out" standard has become in regards to eating, drinking and basically living.
Before I came to Kenya and started living here for several months each year, I was what was known as a "picky" eater.  (That excludes donuts, I've never met a donut I didn't like)!

And although I married a hunter, having watched, at age 5, the death of Bambi's mother, my view towards eating anything from the wild was tainte...
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June 27, 2017

June 27, 2017
Today, I thought I would show some pictures of the area where we live.  Kitale is considered a small town but there are thousands of people surrounding the town, in different sections.  Sort of like Phoenix is next to Tempe, next to Mesa, next to Apache Junction.  There are lots of pockets of people.
Most of the business owners in Kitale are what the Africans call "Asians".  We call them East Indian.  Our landlord's name is Ashok Mesuria.  He lives in a house right behind us.

 


This is his...
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June 2, 2017

June 2, 2017
Finally, the website loaded and I can write.  If you ever need a website for a blog or whatever, DO NOT use Yola.  It's horrible.  Loses my posts after I'm finished and sometimes refuses to open up when I have something to write.  I'm hoping Yola is reading my post and sees this!
Okay, now I feel better!
We've had a lot of things going on in the last few weeks.  One was seeing Rehema, the little girl that the team last August took on as a medical need.  Rehema was born with a twisted spine and ...
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May 18, 2017

May 18, 2017
Yesterday was Widow's Day in Bwai.  We left Kitale early, way before any of the widows could have walked to the home  where we met.  So we stopped in the village center in Bwai to purchase some pans for the boy's home.  The large aluminum basins are used to cook large amounts of rice, maize or beans.  Feeding 15 boys requires large amounts of food.  So, we pulled up to a small shop, which just happened to have the basins, which they call sofarias.  As Coney is purchasing them, he notices the ...
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April 28, 2017

April 29, 2017
We're back! 
Arrived a week ago Friday, received 4 visitors on the next day Saturday, attended a special church service on Sunday, 2 more guests arrived on last Tuesday, and we also started a 4 day conference that same day.  It's Saturday again, we have church tomorrow and Monday morning, Coney and 3 pastors will be flying to Lodewar, on the northern border of Kenya, to have another conference. Two of our guests will stay with me and will meet with the widows on Tuesday.

Still with a  bit of je...
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September 1, 2016

September 1, 2016
Update on the church building:
It's almost done!  

Coney and the guys did an excellent job.  The bricks were made last year, fired and ready for construction.  The floor is still sawdust, as we ran out of time this trip.  But next year, the floor will be poured.  We started construction the third week of July.  It's been an amazing project to watch.

The team from the U.S. just left on Wednesday morning (our time).  7 women, 5 of them from our church, one from Tucson and one from Flagstaff, We ha...
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August 9, 2016

August 9, 2016
Today would have been my grandmother Mimi's 117th birthday.  I would have loved to have brought her here, she could identify with so much.  Not the large cities, but the villages that we work in.  Being born right before the turn of the century, she experienced more of a rural, farm life.  
The village we work in, Kipsaina is probably farther behind, in terms of progress, than my grandmothers time.  People still cook outside, their homes are not brick or block or even sheetrock, but mostly mud...
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July 29, 2016

July 29, 2016
I haven't been diligent this trip, in publishing my blogs.  Well, actually, I have tried several times and the website that we use, Yola, has not been diligent in allowing me access.  It's frustrating to try over and over, to sign in and open it up, only to have it say "You are not connected to the internet".  Yet I am.  But the worst, is when I complete my entire blog, pictures and all, go to publish it and it disappears with a little box that says "Sorry".  
Extremely frustrating.
But tonight...
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