Nigel's news

A Message from Zambia Number 2

Wednesday 15th January 2014

I have just cooked my dinner, rice and a peanut stew, followed by fresh mango which seems to be the only fruit I can get locally. I brought a bag of potatoes, rice and pasta when I arrived in Livingstone and I think that may last me for the time I am here. I have used eggs, peanuts, soya and tin pilchards along with tomatoes and onions I can purchase locally and one day I snapped up 3 green peppers. My bag of porridge  has almost gone so I am having a sort of rice pudding for breakfast and some sort of sandwich for lunch ( I can buy rolls locally)

Time seems to be going fast and yet slow and my local vocabulary is growing slowly. People seem pleased that I am trying and asking for new words each day, some are not short of advice about pronunciation. When I walk in to the centre of the town/Village I usually end up having a conversation with someone and little children shout out white man ‘Macore’.  It does however seem strange not seeing any one after I get in about 19.00- 19.30 until I go out in the morning.

I did manage the devotion at the Orphans and vulnerable children project, with some acting and some song a story of Zaccheaus and on Monday took the devotion at the primary school, John 3: 16. Today I have done a First aid workshop for staff and volunteers at the OVC and was then asked to take the Children devotions and did something on Matthew 5: 13-16 and not hiding what you are good at. This evening was the weekly Bible study which I think the Rev Manda did a brilliant session on spiritual gifts  using I Corinthians 12: 12-31, 1 Peter 2: 5, 9-10 and Hebrews 13: 15-16 and different styles in Church    

Tuesday I had no programme down for me, so I arranged to meet the manager at the OVC and had a very productive meeting about some of the training we may be able to give to those on the social committee who are responsible for different sectors of the community. I have also got a train first aid with a few to give more information who will become the first aiders. They are so near the hospital, but I am sure it will be of general use.

We also talked about small business development and the empowerment of local families who use the feeding programme. Possible through small business cooperatives, but If we are to get any of this under way before I go this time we will need to work quickly. The ‘Orphan and Vulnerable Children’s project’ has the farm, tailoring project, carpentry project and garden project and I was looking at ways they could be expanded to generate income for the running of the OVC. I have some idea of other product the tailoring project could make in addition to the shopping bags if anyone else has ideas let me know. I can then bring some back with me to sell.

I Saturday I had the privilege of going to visit the local chief in his palace. There is lot of ceremony involved with much clapping and bowing, but after the formal introductions we had good conversation about his community and how it can best be served. He seems to be aware of the issues and has started a process to get the Churches working together. He does attend the United Church of Zambia and seems to know his Bible well and have a strong faith. He and the Rev Manda seem to get on well; we later had a more informal coffee with him.

I am now to preach in a Village outside of Mwandi on Sunday and new things get added to the programme each day. I pray that you grow with God this week and that you pray for wisdom for me as I suggest different things and try to help this community, whilst at the same time learn from them.

Nigel 15th January 2014