NEWS END OF APRIL 2014
Give thanks that the renewal of my Kenya work-permit has been approved for another 3 years, up to June 2017.
I visited an ex-Yala Theological Centre teacher. We spent a couple of hours just encouraging one another talking at his home. At the crusade held near-by, two more of our one-time YTC teachers were singing and translating. That was very encouraging. I was able to attend the start of the crusade, when it was announced that we were proferring the solution to people’s issues with evil spirits, witches, and poverty. Then had to set off on the 1 hour cycle to get home before the dark and rain.
Easter-Saturday night, is traditionally the main Easter service for the Coptic Church. (My role was to translate the preacher.) We apparently did an abridged version of the Egyptian variant; ours was a few hours shorter, only 8pm till 11.30 pm. At one point, all the lights were turned off . . . until an announcement came that ‘he has risen’! The procession of priests and deacons marched around the church 4 times holding candles, crosses, dressed in bright white robes, while singing, giving pride of place to a large ‘icon’ (i.e. specially blessed picture) of the risen Christ with incense being smoked onto him, was amazing.
Since Easter day, many Coptic Christians are smiling. There are many reasons for this. Included, are that before Easter for 55 days they ate no animal products. From Easter day for 50 days they are permited to eat meat every day if they want to . . . the only 50 days in the year when there are no fasting days at all, I have been told!
Give thanks for valuable discussion time with a pastor from the Siaya area who is becoming very active and very effective in planting churches. His means are ‘very African’. That is, he uses his gift of prophecy to interest and draw people. It is amazing how much church activity in Africa revolves around what we could write off in English as ‘emotion’.
I have just heard that some KIST graduates and colleagues have founded a Bible/Theological training college some distance from my home but in Luoland. Please pray for this effort. Pray for a meeting I have tomorrow (25th April) with eight new missionary couples from America, now living in Kisumu.