Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Alive and Well: April 15th, 2010

After two months in Africa, here’s is a current status update on my big family.

We are learning how to live here and our ministry opportunities continue to grow.
It took a while to get an enjoyable menu. We have a pretty good list of meals that we can make and it's getting longer. Rebekah and Kristen made over 100 tortillas today.

The pastor's wife, Annette, who lives on the compound with her husband and little son, helps open our eyes to the local foods. The little children love to watch her cook outside on her little charcoal stove. The teen boys are delighted when she when she brings over a covered dish. The boys fell in love with the local foods at last month’s Mobile Pastor’s Conference.

The teens and adults have all lost weight, but don't worry about us. We are just shedding the American Layer. In Washington State we always lose weight in the summer. Here it is always summer.

The kids are all getting tan. We are at 4500 ft. I need to be more faithful with sun screen. Today, Garrett, Jake and Travis worked on the church garden project. It is a program called Gardening God's Way to help the nationals increase their yields with a variety of techniques and changes in their current methods. The church is holding a training conference next month.

I started discipling a new convert this Saturday. Her name is Precious. Rebekah has been discipling for four weeks and Garrett started with a group of boys this Saturday.

Garrett has many ministry opportunities because of a high school senior friend named Robert. Robert is very bright and is trying for a scholarship into medical school. He is an amazing math student and a good influence on Jake and Trav too, as he looks over their math and wants to talk with them about it. We have adopted him. He comes over to study and rest.

Robert and Garrett are soul winning/visitation partners. They also have two meetings each week that God has opened up for them. As I'm typing, Garrett is sharing the gospel in our living room with Pious a lost friend of Roberts. He is a very goal oriented young man and hard working. Pray that he will come to Christ.

Garrett also has his friends at the nearby high school -- the basketball team. He is their best fan and practices with them a couple days a week. I pray God will open a great door at that school. It is Entare School. Entare means Lion. The president of Uganda went to that school.

Rebekah and Kristen went to the women's prison this week with Prima. She is a good song leader and presents the gospel. The women at the prison love to sing. It would be good to start a discipleship course with the women that are interested. I hope to go next time.

Next month is a busy one. Katie arrives the same day as Andrea from our church. Andrea will be working at the same orphanage that Rebekah served in. I believe she is bringing violins and recorders. I heard she has a lot planned for those dear children. I won't be joining Tom to pick them up at the airport, because I'll be preparing for the Medical Team that also comes that week. I can’t wait to see Katie, our Star Graduate.

Andrea and Rebekah will likely go with Tom, who will be assisting the medical missions team, so the rest of the kids and I will have Katie to ourselves while everyone else heads out on the long terrible road to Kanungu to treat the people from the Pigmy Village one day and the towns people for two days.

The Medical Team was here in March in Central Uganda. Tom and I got to talk to them about the water problem in Kyahi. They were glad to hear a clean water source was coming. They had held clinics their last year and saw the needs. Praise God! It is installed and in use even be for they return.

I love working with the kids and their school work. I'm enjoying our house and yard. The pace of life is enjoyable. We have time for each other, conversations, games and books.

David, a man from the church gave us a Rooster on Sunday. I'm sure Tom posted pictures. The kids were so excited. I was thinking about raising goats but I'm staying away from dairy cows. Fresh milk in town is a dollar a gallon. I have to pasteurize it myself. A friendly neighbor back home taught me how. When cooking I use whole-cream powdered milk.

Language training is supposed to start soon. That is our next addition. Several families want to do it together. I think Bro. Matt has chosen the teacher.

Tom and Pastor Smith have a burden for the schools in Africa. Many doors are open. Tom has the most amazing opportunity. The man that owns the electronic shop in town also owns a poly-technical school with over 200 students. He invited Tom to come and teach the Bible every Friday at 11:00am. The first class went well. Some students are believers and even prepared special music. Only God! What an opportunity! These students are young adults living away from home from all over Uganda and even some students from other African countries. Please pray that God will work it their hearts for salvation and that they will serve God where they settle after their training is complete.

The John & Romans in Runyonkore that arrived just after we did have been a great help to us. It is so easy to talk to people about the Lord. What a great tool for new missionaries.

God has led us gently - Praise the Savior!

Love and Prayer,


Romans 10:8

Come Visit!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Alive and Well - March 17th, 2010

Dear Friends and Family,
I love it here in Uganda. I watch the sun rise from the veranda. We see a new bird variety everyday. School is going well, and we do most of it outside on the veranda.
We came at an exciting time to Independent Baptist Church of Mbarara. The Runyonkore copy of John and Romans arrived and distribution has begun. The people of Mbarara appreciate and gladly receive them, and often stop what they are doing to read it. Today, in a small grocery store, I gave one to several of the employees there. Before we left, the other workers came and asked for a copy. Even the owners, who are from India, wanted to look it over. The "You Have Never Been So Loved" tract from Faith Baptist Church has been very effective as people love to see the pictures of our people back in the states. Even the Muslims here read the tracts, well most of them.
The church is more and more lead by the Ugandans. Their enthusiasm and burden for their own people is very encouraging. A young man from the church, Robert, took Garrett to preach at the aids hospital office. There were about 15 adult men who listened and asked him to come back next week. Also, a trade school and a village school have opened their doors for us to bring in the gospel! Pray for us as we make preparation to go through these open doors.
We enjoy the newness of the shopping here. The kids (Scott and up) go on adventures daily. It is good to get out and walk, even if it is only to buy more bananas or pineapples. The lady, Dorthy, who owns one of the shops where we buy produce came to the church this last Sunday!
The house here is as big as our old house if you count the veranda. The yard is beautiful. I'm planting the pineapple tops in hope of reaping a harvest in 3 or 4 years. The little ones have made a tree fort and have to be bathed every night to get the leaves and tree bark out of their hair.
The orphanage is coming up. Please pray that God will lead and bless as decisions are made for this huge undertaking.
I have permission to start a Pray and Play for mazungu home school moms and kids. I will be starting that soon, now that the tile men are done replacing the flooring. What a messy job that turned out to be!
Other ministries that we are engaged in or planning for: We have been invited to join the women's prison ministry. Rebekah is subbing for the Sunday School class this week. The refugee ministry is going strong and had 20 people baptized two weeks ago.
God has lead us gently. I enjoy that we are ahead of you time-wise. When we are thanking God for the great day He gave us, it is the perfect time to ask him to bless and help all of you as you begin your day!
Love and Prayers,
Cheryl Tracht
(Romans 10:8)