We live in Mwanza, Tanzania, serving with Emmanuel International helping local churches in physical and spiritual ministry.

Tuesday, 23 April 2019

Easter Eggs and "Inuka" (Rising Up)

Easter Sunday morning saw us boarding a ferry on our way to the church in Nyamililo. We arrived a little late as one ferry was broken and so they were down to one. But we were still treated to a morning breakfast of plantain and potatoes with hot milk on our arrival at Tito's house.

It was great to see how Tito's family have used the profits from their extra harvest of pigeon peas and soya to buy chickens and make a chicken house. They are now selling eggs in the village! And so we bought some Easter eggs to take home with us! Somehow these eggs seem rather more exciting the mass-produced chocolate variety!
"Easter" eggs
Tito and Louisa with the chickens
Then we walked over for the church service. Now, if you want to see how to dance on Easter morning … look no further than the choir in this church! Their new outfits were a lively orange and their moves radiated life and energy! See the video below ...and no, I didn't speed it up! That is original speed! Tim preached an excellent Easter message and then there was more singing and dancing!

Back in Mwanza, it was then wonderful to welcome the Williams family over for hot cross buns and a Battenberg cake Katrina had made! It is so lovely to see Pete and Helen again and we have enjoyed meeting up on several occasions this past week! As well, over the Easter weekend, we enjoyed time with Laura and the families on our team … with an Easter egg hunt (again, not the chocolate variety!) and more hot cross buns!

Louisa crosses the buns

Inuka (Rising Up)

A few weeks ago I went to visit our beekeeping groups in Ngudu and Malya with Bhatendi. We started with a group meeting in Ngudu at which the group elected a chairperson, secretary and treasurer. They have now written a constitution and named themselves "Inuka" which means "Rising Up." It was wonderful to pray with the new leadership as they assume their roles and for the group as they "rise up"! They have nine hives out in the forests and fields now with three more to bait and hang.

Praying for the new leadership of the Inuka Beekeepers Group
On the following day we drove on to Malya, and met with the mamas group there. We made various beeswax balms and then sat together for a Bible study and chat. They are doing well and thinking well about more things that they can do together! The goat we sold to them a few months ago is now pregnant and will deliver in a couple of months. They continue to work a garden together and are planting a variety of vegetables to sell. They now want to use some of their profits to start a chicken project (more Easter eggs and more Inuka!) and also a business selling second hand clothes. 

After a lovely time with the women, we then had a meeting with the beekeepers. It was disappointing to hear about the loss of three hives due to high winds in a recent storm. Also the eight new hives they bought last year with the honey sales have been slow to colonise and start producing honey. But yet there is progress and we are still hopeful for a harvest!
Having a quick look at the hives near the church building

Bhatendi and I ready to visit the bees
That night as darkness began to descend, a group of us headed out to check some of the hives. Then, as is the story of my life rather often, things went pear-shaped! We got all suited up and ready as the sky darkened with great black clouds. We got the lid off the hive as the thunder started to rumble. As we looked into the hive, which was in a bit of state with ants coming in and the combs higgledy-piggledy, raindrops started to fall. There was nothing else we could do …a crazy wind picked up blowing the tin roof off the other hive and our hive started swinging. We packed up fast. Then, now completely in the dark, we were running in our beesuits through the fields in torrential rains with high winds, cracking thunder and crazy bolts of lightening! 
Ready to go … but the clouds darken!
We made it back to the Land Cruiser and piled in, wet suits and all. I was driving back to the dirt road in the dark in pelting rain, which was another adventure in itself. On a narrow "track", through bushes and branches, slipping and sliding in black cotton soil and through thick mud … We ended up at Bageshi's house, where his kind wife gave us heaped bowls of hot rice and beans! 

And so there is a brief update on a few of the things going on right now! Truly Easter is a special time to think about rising up! It is wonderful to celebrate that indeed Christ has risen and through what He has done, we too can rise with Him. And what joy there is in sharing this! 

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