Monday, September 4, 2023
It is Monday evening and we just arrived back in Lodwar from spending a couple of days in East Pokot. We were there to attend the dedication of the new church building for the village of Kresia. API, through the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund, partnered with the AIC (African Inland Church) of Kresia to erect a new church building in the villiage.
Although you might think it would be unbearably hot inside, we were surprised at how cool the interior stayed even as the sun rose high during our three-hour service. There seem to be some fairly strong prevailing breezes that flow through the generously sized windows on each side.
The church was overjoyed to have their own building after years of sitting under trees and other temporary structures. Because this ground is infested with termites, the church made the choice to use steel construction throughout.
We were met by the women of the church singing their welcome and blessing to us as we arrived. And then we were all led in procession to the building entrance where we held the dedication service.
We were then given the priviledge of unlocking and opening the door for everyone to enter.
Five local AIC churches came together for this Sunday service and the building was very full.
The visitors were fitted out with local finery. And I got the hat with an osterich feather!
However, I don't think we reached the pinnacle of sartorial splendor shown by the average local.
The local choirs of each church was given time to present songs to the congregation.
And then the visitors were give the opportunity to share something from the word to the congregation. Pastor Boniface went first, and then I followed.
I'd like to thank Crossway Publishing and Ekklesia Afrika for their generosity in providing bibles for these believers. Each pastor received a personal Concise Study bible plus10 more for members in their congregations.
We closed out our time in Kresia with a meal of Nyama Choma and rice (BBQ goat and rice) and left to swing by the village of Amaya, where we were this last spring. On the way we met a couple of young girls who were going through the rites of circumcision (FGM - Female Genital Mutilation). They are the two with long poles. This barbaric rite of passage ceremony is still practiced in many tribal cultures in Kenya. Although the church speaks out against it, there is a massive cultural attachment to the practice. But pushback against the culture is rising. The AIC here in East Pokot has recently begun a partnership with a western ministry to fund and build a rescue home for those young girls who are trying to escape this practice. Pastor Musa Maklab, of Amaya is spearheading the effort. Please pray that the gospel would breakthrough in this area and destroy the works of the devil among these people.
After traveling to Amaya, about 5 kilometers away, we visited the dispensary which has been restarted by Pastor Musa. This is the clinic where Linda Wickman served when she and her husband were in Kenya. They have hired a clinical officer to oversee the dispensary and hope to continue to expand the work here.
We also want to thank Surfing Servants for the water purification systems they gave us to hand out over here. As you might know, clean drinking water is a big issue in most of Kenya, especially in the remote rural areas like Amaya. These simple devices are literally life-saving gifts to these people. We left one with the clinical officer of the dispensary and he was overjoyed!
Thank you for your prayers. God has been gracious to us and we continue to be in good health. Pray that the word that was preached and heard bears fruit for His glory!