Forgotten Voices' Mission:

"Demonstrating the love of Jesus Christ by equipping local churches in southern Africa to meet the physical & spiritual needs of children orphaned by AIDS in their communities."

Friday, October 19, 2007

Greetings from South Africa

After an hour at the gate and a 15.5 hr flight, we are here! Trevor & I sat next to each other, with an aisle in between. He was on my left. I'm writing to you from the Baobab Lounge, South African Airways' frequent flyer lounge. I was PUMPED to remember that I still had almost 2 hrs of internet time left on my account here in Johannesburg.

Highlights of flight: watched 3 movies (Opal Dream about a little girl with make-believe friends - good BBC family fun, Some movie with Luke Wilson that was pretty funny, and Evan Almighty); managed to sleep for about 5 hrs, which is lower than normal but almost a full nights rest; and had a great dinner & breakfast! Best part though was it was really direct without a fuel stop, so only 15.5 instead of 18. those extra hours are killer! so i was glad to miss them this time.

Lows: my seat didn't recline; the guy in front of me put his seat back as soon as we took off... so 15.5 hrs of extra crunch on my legs.

My other neighbor was a mom from Chambersburg, PA. Her daughter works for Coca-Cola and has a work thing in Cape Town for the next week, so she invited her mom along to experience Africa for the 1st time. Her other daughter was in St. Lucia and a son studying somewhere exotic. Can't remember. But interesting conversation. I enjoyed listening to her cheer on her kids, even though they weren't around. :) It reminded me of my mom, which is always refreshing.

Trevor is off somewhere drinking coffee. I'm going to hang out here and hopefully knock out some more emails in the next hour. We take off at 6:10pm local, which is 12:10pm on the east coast.

My thoughts are racing as I get excited to return to Zambia. We begin our trip in Lusaka for 2 nights and 1 very full day. Our arrival may prove to be tricky. We have a taxi driver coming to fetch us to bring us to the CURE Hospital guesthouse. We also will be met by a driver that has our vehicle. So we'll have a bit of a caravan to someplace that we don't know how to get to...and it will be about 9 at night in a foreign city. Should be interesting. :) Lots of good stories to come, I'm sure.

In Lusaka, I'll be having breakfast with the national rep for the Mennonite Central Committee and then an afternoon meeting with a TCZ graduate working as the Spiritual Director at CURE's hospital. Trevor is meeting with CURE International's hospital administrators to talk IT. Hopefully our jet lag will not slow us down too much.

Please pray for our time in Lusaka. We then proceed to Ndola, Zambia about 4 hours north of the capital, Lusaka, to visit with folks at the Theological College of Central Africa (TCCA). We hope to begin a partnership with TCCA that would provide funding for their graduates who are running AIDS orphan care projects through their local churches. These projects differ from church to church and may include things like school fees, gardening support, income generating projects, counseling, or vitamins, etc. Things at TCCA are full of promise. I'm anxious to see our friends, the Stuebings, and meet some new ones.

Well - a lot to do and a lot to pray about. Off to email for a bit (hopefully) and read the highlights on last nights Red Sox game! GO SOX!

Pray on friends! I hope you enjoy your ride with us. It is already promising to be a fun filled, action packed adventure with lots of interesting characters along the way.

All the best from South Africa,

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