“How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”
A.A. Milne "Winnie the Pooh"
As the goodbyes begin, I can only be grateful for the lovely people that make these goodbyes so hard! We didn't realise how much we would end up saying goodbye when we came here, and it is never a nice thing to do. We have now said our goodbyes in Kimande and Itunundu. A farewell service and feast had been planned for Sunday afternoon in Kimande. It was lovely. At the church service, Mama Sungura (Christina) read a report on behalf of the group; as well as expressing their thanks to us, they gave a history of our time with them (reporting over 210 stoves made), thanking as well all the visitors that have come with us (Edwin and Margaret, Kate, Greg, Hugh, Lyn and Ellie and Gideon). They gave Acts 15:36 to us, "Sometime later Paul said to Barnabas, 'Let us go back and visit the believers in all the towns where we preached the word of the Lord and see how they are doing.'" So we know this won't be the last time we see them all! We have to go back! Then there was much singing and dancing (even with a generator so we could have loud music!). We were presented with gifts of rice and a khanga that was danced in and wrapped around us all amid much laughter, hugs, tears and dancing! Ezekiel, Mendriad and Jesca were there with us which was great! And everyone stayed together to feast on rice and beans afterwards.
|Mama Sungura reads the group letter|
|Presented with gifts|
(Simoni, white shirt with the stick, recovering from his gunshot wound was able to join us!)
|Farewell to the stoves group|
|The group is now advertising on their door! |
"ANNOUNCEMENT! We are selling fuel-efficient stoves. 5000Ttsh"
With mobile numbers of group members to call!
|A piece of chalk advertises the stoves on the mud of the stove house|
|Farewell to Pastor Castory's family|
I'll finish with a quote from our advent reading which encouraged me to readjust my eyes looking for those important glimmers of light.
"... it is through weaving light into the shade of our present world that he evokes wonder by the wisdom of his counsel (wonderful counsellor); shows the power of God in the world (mighty God); cares eternally just like a parent (everlasting father) and is the source of all well-being for God's people ( prince of peace). Jesus lived as wonderful counsellor, mighty God, everlasting father and prince of peace in the midst of our broken, despairing world, shining in the darkness and bringing hope.
It is this light shining in the darkness for which we wait and the season of advent calls us to readjust our eyes in that darkness so that we can see glimmers of the Light of the World, glowing and pointing us forwards to that ultimate time in the future when everything will be fulfilled and in the words of John Donne's prayer .. 'there will be no darkness or dazzling but one equal light.'"
|The trees in Kimande are growing well!|