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News for Middle of November 2003

* Gunshots echoed through the air as I watched people scampering to the back of the shop. People were running up and down on the street outside. A car sped by. The bank I had emerged from 15 minutes earlier, had been robbed. Amongst other things taken by the thieves was the cheque I had written to get some local currency. Fortunately we have managed to cancel it.

Pray for Kisumu town where this took place, where unrest seems to be on the rise. Give thanks that I was away from the bank by the time this happened!

* Cycling by the Yala hospital a few days ago, the mother to a friend flagged me down and informed me that one of her sons was sick in that hospital. I agreed to go and pray for George. I found him lying on his back unable to talk or do anything except move one eye slightly. He looked to be aged around 25 or 30. I put my hand onto his shoulder and talked to him. We assume that he could hear what was being said, although it was hard to be certain. I prayed for him. I went on to pray for another old man in the same ward with whom I often fellowship in my local Anglican church.

Another reminder about the vulnerability of mankind. A strong and fit young fellow, suddenly rendered into this helpless state. (It is probably due to malaria, I do not know an official diagnosis.) Tomorrow that could be I. Suddenly, no opportunity again to say hello, to say 'I love you' to your relative, to chat or to discuss life. Just a staring into space ... who is man that he should ever be proud? (George died 2 days later.)

* I was hoping to spend a couple of weeks in Uganda over the December vacation holding seminars with churches etc. This week I heard that my Ugandan colleague with whom I was to travel, Rev. James Ngabo, has been involved in an accident with a motorcycle-taxi and is in hospital anticipating having to have an eye removed surgically. Please pray for him. My trip to Uganda is thus called off. (I may just cross the border for a few days).

* Give thanks for the key meetings held so far in and about Y.T.C. We have 2 (and more) kinds of churches in Yala. They do not all see eye to eye. This means that being linked with one group has limited opportunities of working with the other group, even though the same teaching would benefit both. Pray with us that we be able to overcome this difficulty.

* Pray for our Government's moving against corruption. This is proving 2-edged. Much that works in Kenya has been operating by the 'corrupt' system. Undercutting the corrupt-sector can bring a lot of activities to a halt. This could bring greater and greater dependence on direct management and control of what goes on here from the outside, i.e. Europe and America Jim