Friday, November 12, 2010
This picture is of the 7-Eleven Super Market a short distance from our hotel. It has nothing to do with the 7-Eleven chain in America, although I'm sure the name pulls in a few "ferenge" tourists.
Thursday, November 11, 2010
The illness continued to spread, and at least half of us had some form of it. Fortunately, we were advised beforehand to get a prescription for Cipro, so at least treatment was at hand.
When we arrived back at the Union Hotel in Addis Ababa, we took at tour of the Hamlin Ethiopia Fistula Hospital. We gave them the three suitcases of medical supplies that we brought with us and money to fund operations on two women. Pastor Myron was so sick that he had to stay back at the hotel. I know this was a major disappointment to him. Ever since seeing the PBS Nova presentation "A Walk to Beautiful" he had wanted to tell at least one of these women, most of whom had been marginalized by their own families, that "You are beautiful to God."
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Thursday we return to Addis Ababa for a visit to the Fistula Hospital. Friday will be a workday at the youth rehabilitation center and Saturday we'll be able to shop for souvenirs before catching our return flight Saturday night.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Monday, November 8, 2010
In the picture, Randy and Myron trim some linoleum that is going back into one of the rooms after the painting is finished.
While the painting was going on, Randy, Myron and I hit the road in the bus with our Ethiopian helpers in search of wood, screws, a power saw and a drill. We were reminded how lucky we are back a home to be able to run down to Lowe's or Home Depot and pick up everything we need in one stop. We spent most of the day going to multiple hardware stores, lumber outlets and carpentry shops before we got everything we needed.
We couldn't find a ladder for sale anywhere in town. When we returned to Bethzatha, Myron and Randy built a stepladder for the painters out of 4-inch tree trunks and boards. Tuesday we will be back at Bethzatha to finish the painting while Myron and Randy build tables.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
After the two-and-a-half-hour service, it was lunch on the bus and then a four-hour drive south to Awassa. It was quite an experience to see animals and vehicles sharing the road and the large number of people seemingly in the middle of nowhere who were walking along the roadside. Where did they come from and where were they going?
We felt the adversary at work when we got to Awassa. First the driver had trouble in the dark finding the orphanage, where we wanted to drop off painting supplies for tomorrow. Most everyone was tired and cranky when we arrived at the Oasis Hotel, where there was difficulty with some of the room reservations and the dinner arrangements. We had a time of prayer before dinner and after we ate everyone headed to their rooms for a good night's sleep before our busy day tomorrow.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
We had lunch at Kaldi's, which is unashamed of its role as a complete Starbucks knockoff, right down to the colors and logo. Some of our party had a fruit drink that was layered with guava, avocado and papaya juice, a representation of the colors of the Ethiopian flag.
The afternoon was spent at Bethzatha, where we did all kinds of activities for the kids. Like any group of 50 kids mostly 8 and under, they had varied socialization skills. Some just wanted to sit on your lap and be held, while others plunged into all the activities, from blowing bubbles to art projects to trying to hit a plastic baseball. Jan did story time again, this time with our driver, Wass, as a very animated translator. Jan and Bekki led the kids in singing all the preschool songs with their hand motions, and then the children serenaded us in the Amharic language.
We had a traditional coffee ceremony, with coffee beans cooked over the fire as we watched and hand-ground with a mortar and pestle.
Dinner was at Makush, which we were told was the best Italian restaurant in town. The Wades weren't with us for dinner, as they took a tour of the Bingham Academy and went to dinner with the director of Bingham to another "best Italian restaurant in town."
Sunday we will attend an Ethiopian church service and then head for Awassa, where we will spend three days painting rooms at the Bethzatha Orphanage there.
Friday, November 5, 2010
After a traditional Ethiopian lunch (those of you who've eaten at Queen of Sheba in Spokane know what I'm talking about) we visited a youth rehabilitation facility. Again, no photos of the kids were allowed, which further complicates my role as official photographer. I've been promised, though, that when we go to Awassa on Sunday I'll be able to take pictures of us interacting with kids.
At the youth rehab facility, Bekki and the women taught 10 girls, most of them 14 years old, how to sew a patchwork rag quilt. Each one takes 80 squares to make, and North Addison members pre-cut 69 sets in the month before our trip. Annie said the sewing teacher was blown away by us donating the material, which was in short supply, and the fact that they were already cut to size was icing on the cake.
While the sewing was going on, Tom, Randy and the others played soccer and youth group games with the boys. Soccer is big here, but Kenzie led a group in a spirited session of "Rock, Paper, Scissors." After showing off some of his dance moves, Tom had a discussion with a group of boys about talking with God and Jesus and how Christ died for us to allow a path of redemption when we do things such as steal.
Tomorrow it's back to Hannah's Hope in the morning and then a visit to the Bethzatha orphanage in the afternoon.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Sent from my iPad
It's now 1 a.m., there's a junkyard dog baying somewhere in the distance, and our alarm clock is set for 7 a.m. Our adventure has begun.
In this picture, Jan Person and Andrew Kercher play the waiting game in Amsterdam.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
In the picture, Kenzie Wade relaxes as she prepares herself for a long day in the air.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
We leave for Ethiopia about 24 hours from now. There’s a lot of excitement in the group, and the adrenalin is pumping as we scurry to make last-minute preparations. I am looking forward to the time change. If I continue to wake up at 2:30 in the morning, it will be like sleeping past noon Ethiopia time.
Monday, November 1, 2010
The first of our group, Tom Wade, leaves this morning for Ethiopia to take care of some business related to future employment there. I told him yesterday that he is our forerunner, paving the way for us, so he should now be known as Tom the Baptist.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
Our prayer warriors here at home have been a tremendous blessing to us in the 13 months we’ve prepared for our trip and will continue to be so during our time in Ethiopia. Every Sunday school class has “adopted” a mission team member and have prayed specifically for “their” team member and his or her needs. I was assigned to the high school class, and they’ve been very enthusiastic in their support. I don’t know of any other team member who has received balloons and a serenade with a revised version of “Jesus Loves Me” from their prayer partners.
The picture above was taken at the commissioning service last Sunday as church members gather at the front of the worship center to lay hands on team members and pray for them. Along the front are team members Tom Wade, Bekki Sherwood, Sherridan Poffenroth and Randy Myers.
I did some tweaking on the template for the blog after I realized that it didn’t look the same on a PC and a Mac. Everyone should be able to read this version OK. The seven most recent posts show on the main page, and there’s a link at the bottom to take you to the older posts.
Thursday, October 28, 2010
North Addison Baptist Church commissioned the 12 members of the Ethiopia Team during Sunday’s morning worship service. Dr. Bill Crews, executive director of the Northwest Baptist Convention, presented the message from Nehemiah 1:1-11. He said when Nehemiah heard of the need in Jerusalem, he first listened, he had compassion, and he prayed. Also participating were Dr. James Sanders from the convention and Maurice Gress from Dishman Baptist Church, representing the Inland Empire Baptist Association’s Mission Committee.
In the picture are (from left) Myron Person, Randy Myers, Sherridan Poffenroth, Bekki Sherwood, Tom Wade, Leanne Wade, Deanna Wade, McKenzie Wade, Annie Matlow, Garry Matlow, Jan Person and Andrew Kercher.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
In just one week we’ll be on our way to Ethiopia. Please be in prayer for us as we finish our packing. It won’t be as simple as running down to the Walmart if we forget something essential. In the picture above from our packing party last Friday, support team member Jolene Harris and Kenzie Wade pack one of the suitcases containing materials for the projects we plan to do.
Monday, October 25, 2010
Sunday morning Pastor Myron mentioned “A Walk to Beautiful,” a one-hour documentary about the Fistula Hospital in Addis Ababa that aired on the PBS series “Nova.” If you haven’t seen it, it’s available on DVD or you can watch it online at http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/beautiful/ or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3w-fOmovijc&ob=av1e.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
When we return to Addis there will be a tour of the Fistula Hospital (which was featured in the PBS Nova special “A Walk to Beautiful”) and some of us with medical training will spend an afternoon working there. The picture above shows support team members Joy Harris (left) and Melissa Perier sorting medical supplies at our “packing party” last night.
Friday, October 22, 2010
Tonight we had a packing party for the trip. Erica from All God's Children challenged us to fit all of our clothes and personal items into our carry-on bag, so that our two checked bags could be used for donated items and supplies for mission projects. We packed and itemized more than 1,000 pounds of supplies. In this picture, Tom Wade and Annie Matlow are putting bottles of lotion into plastic bags in case they leak. In the background are Melissa Perier and Wyatt Harris, two of our great support folks here at home.