Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Haneti Effort and a little dog

Most of our "team" outside the church the first Sabbath
Haneti village area
Friday, July 5th, Joshua and I said "good-bye" to Doug and got on a bus to answer the call for assistance for an evangelism effort north of Dodoma.  We had gotten an informal invitation while working in Dodoma in June.  The official letter arrived very shortly after we got home from those meetings.  There was already a conflict in schedules for us.  We were also invited to Kirando.  We prayed about it and decided to spit up our family and team and have two people in each place.
After about six hours on the bus, we met up with Elizabeth and her husband in Dodoma.  Then they drove the last 100 km as quickly as the roads would allow to arrive shortly before sunset Friday night at the hostel where we stayed.   The trip was a bit scary.  We came VERY near crashing when a huge truck came roaring around a corner on our side of the dirt road.  God was with us and Elizabeth's husband took the car down into the ditch and back out without letting us get smashed by the big truck.  It was only by God's grace we didn't get killed before the meetings ever started.
Testing blood pressures and checking BMI
The hostel was the Catholic run housing for young ladies attending the secondary school in Haneti.  The two "sisters" that ran the place were very nice and we enjoyed our time with them very much.
The two sisters and Elizabeth (our team leader.)
They told me that they had picked out the best available room for Joshua and me.  They brought us in to a large room with two single beds with unusual foam for padding.  There was a pillow for each.  There was a table and two chairs.  The room had a DC LED light.  I had been drinking lots of water and said I really needed to use the facilities, and I saw that there was one there off the room but there was no door and people were coming and going out of our room.  Oh yeah, we had no door on our room.  It was the kitchen, or pantry area also.  So they had put up two sheets to partition our sleeping area off from that busy room.  When I said I really needed the toilet, but there was no door, they showed me that there was a second one just to the right.   It had a door!
Home away from home

YES - this one has a door!

Termites working hard to repair the tunnel above the bathroom door.
Joshua was very nervous about our room in the beginning.  I wasn't nervous, but the first few days are always an adjustment.  Here we were, with people that we didn't know, in a new place, and without Doug, also.
It was a good thing that I take earplugs and eye-masks on trips.  I really needed them for this trip.

Sheet curtain/door to separate our room from the kitchen

It is the dry season in Haneti.  The dust and wind are formidable.  There is a large Mus1im population there along with the Masai people.  There is a rather large Catholic influence there also.  Water is a challenge for the people.  There are actually several water pipes where water is pumped to the site where people can get it.  At some of the locations they have to pay for it by the bucket.  There were always cows, chickens, donkeys, sheep or goats around it seemed.  I don't know if I have ever seen so many donkeys in one place before.  They are used to haul all kinds of things, but especially water.  Many people take water for granted.  Living here, one learns quickly just how important it is.
Inside the little church the last day of our meetings

Health teaching was to start the very day after arriving.  God blessed and people seemed very interested.  The church there in Haneti isn't finished yet.  There are open places for the windows and on one end of the church.  There are between 20-25 church members there.  The children had Sabbath School out under a tamarind tree.  The benches are in need of repair, also.  I was thankful for all the fresh air in the church, though.
Children's Sabbath School class under the tree
After church there was a small puppy being a bit mishandled by some children just outside the church.  We went to its rescue.  It was actually a she.  She belonged to the herds-boy that was watching the calves close by.  There were several puppies.  This little girl warmed-up to us and was following us around shortly.  Someone mentioned something about if we wanted the puppy.  The idea grew on us and we did end up getting her a few days before the meetings were over. 
First evening for teaching at the wide open area.
The main meetings started on Sunday out in a wide open place by one of the water pipes.  The dust and wind were a huge challenge especially in the beginning.  It is a big challenge trying to teach when you can't even see because of the dirt blowing in your face.  They tried to clean up the area and wet it down several times.  It got better and better.  Each time a herd of cows, sheep or goats would go by though, the dust would become a cloud around us.  Joshua and I enjoyed watching the mother goats and sheep come home each evening and the babies coming out running and crying to meet them.  I don't know of many things more cute than baby goats.
We were to do health testing from 2-3pm.  Another person was to give the "Family Life" teachings from 3-4pm.  Then I was to teach from 4-5pm.  Then the main message was to be from 5-6 pm.  After a couple of days we also started a 7-8pm session out by the village area close to the hostel with the projector after dark.  I would teach another session on health and they would follow that up with some other things. They would nail a white sheet to the outside wall of a mud brick hut.  We would hook up the generator.  Four stools would be found for us.  One was used for the projector, one for the laptop and two for out seats.  Joshua did a good job translating for me at all the meetings and many other times.
At the end of the meetings seven people followed their Lord and Savior in baptism.
God is good.

Carrying water Tanzania style

Working animals

Visiting with the local health officials and clinic

Setting up the meeting site

Main meeting time
We were asked to speak at the Haneti Secondary School and give a talk on health and to encourage the students and staff.  That was a great privilege.
Haneti Secondary School
Teaching, sharing and encouraging staff and students

The pastor of the area has already invited us to participate in another set of meetings next year.  He wanted us to go to another set in January in Dar, but our schedule is already over-booked for January.
The work is big, and the laborers are few.  We are praying that we can get some of our students do to the mobile work more and more and we can get more and more people trained.

A typical mud hut for this area.

Another type of simple house

Joshua and the big boabab

Village life around Haneti

Lots of animals at the meeting site each evening
Heavy fire wood carried by the ladies

At our health testing site
Simple pleasures

Joshua and his new little Mus1im friend

 We are thankful for all the blessing of working for our Lord, wherever that takes us.

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