Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Finishing up the year...

I apologize that I’ve been so quiet recently – I think it’s been almost two months since I emailed an update. Part of the reason is that school has been busy, like usual, this term. But it’s also been a pretty uneventful two months. Today was my last day of class for this academic year. I have an exam next week and two term papers, and then I will have over two whole months off – and I am definitely ready for that holiday!! At the moment I’ve recovering from a mild case of malaria. I’m feeling much better today but please pray for a complete restoration of my health so that I can finish up my work for this term.

Some of the highlights from this term were:

- In preparation for my thesis, I had to do a small anthropological research project. Through a local church, I was able to meet with and interview several street boys. I was trying to discover the factors that led children to the streets in this particular town. I was surprised to find out that most of the boys were not orphans, but came from very poor families with many children. In most cases, the parents couldn’t afford to feed the kids and so they went to the streets to try and care for themselves.

- For my trauma and loss counseling class I wrote my final paper on HIV positive orphans. I interviewed a social worker at a children’s home for HIV positive and it was really interesting to find out more about the psychosocial needs of these children.

- I’m house sitting for a professor for the next two months. I moved in about two weeks ago. There are several things in my life that I didn’t appreciate until I didn’t have them anymore. Hot showers, for example. My dorm has a solar heater for the shower but it’s broken, and even if it did work, the hot water would only be available at 5 pm and only on days that it’s been sunny. So instead we heat water in an electric kettle every morning and shower using a bucket. From the time I was asked to house sit, I have been eagerly looking forward to hot showers, especially since it’s the coldest time of the year. Unfortunately, either the shower here is broken or I just can’t figure it out. I need to contact the maintenance guy to come check it out. In the meantime, my bucket will have to suffice…

- Despite the lack of hot showers, I’m enjoying the other benefits of house sitting, especially having a big house to invite people to. I hosted a dinner where we cooked “mzungu” (white person) foods – spaghetti, garlic bread, and ice cream. I’ll be hosting a lunch for my negst small group tomorrow, and in July I’ll be hosting a big goat barbecue for all of the young adults in our young adults ministry at church.

- I’ve been enjoying the young adults ministry in my church. I’m one of 8 leaders for the ministry which is about 40 people. We recently completed a series on dating and marriage, and now I’m working with one of the other leaders to coordinate a series on social justice. We did an intro last week, and we’ll be taking about issues like HIV/AIDS and poverty in the upcoming weeks

I think those are the major things that have been going on. I just found out today that there are 29 students who will not graduate unless they pay their school fees balance. Considering this is a small school, 29 students is a big deal. Please pray that God will provide finances for all of them, and no one will be prevented from graduating because of a lack of finances.

Please also pray for me as I finish up this term. I’m looking into a few short term mission opportunities for the long holiday. Please pray that an opportunity will open up for me to serve for one or two weeks.


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