Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Kiliangawana and Kipeta

We were invited to do health meetings and health expos in two villages in the Rukwa Rift Valley on the West side of Tanzania.  Several of our past students and current evangelists came to be at the meetings with us.  It was very nice to see old friends and to work together to share the love of Jesus with others.
We found a guest house in a village between the two villages where the meetings were to be held.  The good news is that the rooms had decent beds, and private toilets.  The challenging news was that the place is also a pub and people were drinking and making all kinds of noise until the wee hours of the night every night (except when it rained.) 
We had to fetch our water out of a cistern that catches rain water from the roof.  I had forgotten how “refreshing” cold water bucket bathes were.
The weather in this area is very warm during the days and it cools just a bit during the night. 
The local government officials were very happy to hear about the programs that we were planning to do and they offered us meeting locations free of charge. 
Joshua teaching the kids a new game

Teaching under the mango tree
Lots of people coming to the meetings
Kipeta full house
Woman pounding rice (probably)

The big government building we used

Ripe ready rice

Health expo in Kilangawana

Our team (minus Doug and Joshua plus a couple of kids)

Village sights
Health Expo Kilangawana under the mango tree
Teaching in Lipeta
Our rice we purchased drying before going to the mill
The mill and owner (and a Pastor Zawadi)

In Kilangawana we actually met at the village counselor’s house!  We met under the big mango tree in his front yard each day for four days.  We taught using the generator and projector each day.  We ate our lunch in their home, then each afternoon we held the health expo.  People came to get their heights, weights, BMI, peak-flow meter test, and health counseling.  Our past students and evangelists were a huge help with both the meetings and expos. 
Each day we had a full crowd for the meetings and many people for the health expo.  There were 180 people that came through in Kilangawana.  We praise the Lord for keeping the rains away during meeting times.  It did rain a little during some of the nights.

After four days of meetings there, we went to the village of Kipeta.  The local government gave us full access to a new government building for the meetings and health expo.  Again we had very good attendance for the meetings and expo.  118 people passed through the health expo.  There would have been more, but this is the time of harvest and many people have gone out to the fields to harvest the grains that are starting to dry.  We have been asked to come back again in August or September when the field work is done. 
People were very happy.  We saw changes in people, in just a short time.  These villages are plagued with pombe (homemade beer) drinking.  As we taught about the harms of alcohol on the brain and body, we saw people’s lives changing before our eyes!  It was so very exciting!
The Lord blessed in many, many ways and we pray that people received with understanding the message the truly God is LOVE and He loves each one of them.

We learned that in these villages there are at least two machines that can refine the locally grown rice into brown rice instead of white rice.  We were so very excited for this news.  The owner of one of the mills brought us some brown rice as a gift.  We were so happy to know that people can make the choice to eat the healthier brown (unrefined) rice if they so choose.  The people in these villages were glad to learn this also. 

We purchased two buckets of the fresh rice and it will be taken to the mill tomorrow to have the husks removed.  This area grows much rice a large type of millet (much bigger than the kind we have in the U.S.) corn and sesame seeds.  I asked what the people use the sesame seeds for, and I was told that they don’t use them at all.  They only grow them to sell to others that take them far away to sell.  Isn’t that interesting?  It was very interesting to me to see the plants in various stages.

The people here have greeted us warmly and want us to come back to encourage them more.  I hope that we can meet their request as God opens the way and provides means.


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