NEWS END OF NOVEMBER 2015
What is the most tiring job in the world? Spontaneous translation I reckon may be a strong competitor for this title! During a recent church service with my German colleague Frank, I translated some Luo being spoken that I could barely hear into German. It was like in my mind I was tearing open new highways of understanding that my head didn’t know could exist. This at the same time as having to concentrate incredibly hard just to understand what was being said quietly by a person some distance away. Just a few minutes of that and my energy was gone!
Having Frank around has been fascinating, not least because I got so confused that I found myself accidentally speaking to Kenyan people in German! Frank stayed at total of ten days, which included being at home four nights. It was great to have had a German speaker at home, to cancel the otherwise negative (to me) impacts of having English speakers. He had a good time getting to know my children. Frank and I visited eight or so indigenous churches in his time here, as well as a group of missionaries in Kisumu, Egyptians, the Coptic Church and a group of friends who came to my home on the Saturday.
With Frank at an indigenous church
Having ministered for many years in northern Argentina, Frank could compare the practice of indigenous churches here in Western Kenya with what he had knew from there. He found that we have a great variety of indigenous expressions of Christianity here in Kenya. Similarities were legion, which is itself amazing considering the distance from East Africa to Argentina. It was also encouraging for me to find on many occasions when I handled a situation in a particular way, that Frank would say ‘that is what I would have done in Argentina’.
Amazingly we found that the midweek meeting of a church we were to visit was alongside our local ‘prayer mountain’. (It’s about 4 miles from my home as the crow flies. 0°04'45.95" N 34°29'45.28" E ). Frank and I left our bags at the home where the meeting would be later, and got a guided tour of the mountain. On the top, we found a pastor who had already been there for four days fasting, drinking only water from the spring. Many of my colleagues frequent that mountain (actually a hill!) when they want to meet with God.
Frank and I in mouth of cave up 'prayer mountain' (Frank is the handsome one)
I took advantage of Frank’s coming, to hire a taxi to carry a lead-acid battery and 50W solar panel to my home earlier this month. I am therefore engaged when at home in gradually setting up a much more comprehensive system of solar lighting than I have had to date.
Standing near the top of Prayer Mountain
An Amazing boulder at the top (this is Frank with the pastor who was fasting on top of the ‘mountain’ for 5 days)
Climbing the Mountain
Distant view of Prayer Mountain
For information on my latest book see: here.