Saturday, February 12, 2011
Report From Mwanza - Tanzania
Dear Friends and family,
Greetings in the Name of Christ. We have made it through our first full week of classes for Bishop Kwangu. We have completed two courses so far. "The Beliefs, Teachings, and Practices of the Historic Christian Church", What has been believed by all Christians, everywhere, for all time. And, "Introduction to Apostolic Ordained Ministry", a course that examines the qualifications and duties of ordained ministry along with the Ethos and Ethics of Christian Ministry. I am averaging about 25 students in class eah day.
The ones who live farther away are staying in a simple dormitory on the compound, while others come by bus from their homes. As you know, Fr. Francis is teaching in Geita, about 2 1/2 hours away. The weather has been pleasant and sunny. About 80 at night and about 90 during the day. It has rained twice since we are here. This is the "rainy season" which means everything is green and growing well. I see many gardens throughout the city wherever people can find a spot of ground to grow something. I am told that later in the year everything will be brown from the heat.
There does not seem to be any traffic rules to follow except drive on the left side of the road and avoid getting hit. Other than that, do as you wish! The African people seem to be very patient with this system of traffic and I have not seen any accidents.
The students of my class are very involved, listening carefully and asking many questions. Their questions cover a broad variety of subjects pertaining to Christian doctrines and ethics. I have to rely on the Holy Spirit's guidance to give them the best answers and advice. Sometimes progress is slow because of the many discussions, but this is good. It shows that they are thinking and leaning well. As they say here in Tanzania, "the students are coming with the teacher".
The people have been so kind to me. I am humbled by their attitudes. What they lack in knowledge or possessions, they make up for in enthusiasm. They are ordinary people doing the best they can with what they have to care for their families and to do God's work. The African people work very hard and are very industrious.
The average person makes less than one dollar a day. As anywhere in the world, there are problems to deal with in the churches and in society. But God is at work here and the Gospel is being spread by these evangelists. We are here to help equip them to do their work better -- and they are grateful. May the peace of Christ be with you.