News from the field.

2015 API Pastor Training and Service Project

Wednesday February 4, 2015

Take Off

Dave Johnson, Stan Skinner and I took off Wednesday afternoon from SeaTac for Amsterdam and a connecting flight to Nairobi.  We all got there a bit early and had to wait an extra hour because our plane was late in arriving.  We used the time well. (Scroll down to get the whole trip)


Although we were an hour late arriving in Amsterdam, our boarding gate for the flight to Kenya was right next door as we came out of the plane. 

We landed in Nairobi Thursday evening and made it through customs fairly quickly. Stan and Dave even managed to smile for us after nearly 20 hours of travel.  Stan is waving his visa form here.  Apparently proud that he made it through the medical screening set up prior to entering the visa line.


Friday February 6

Friday was a very event packed day. All of us were jet lagging and even though we got to bed the night before rather late, we were all up before five.  We exchanged our dollars for schillings, got supplies at Nakumat, waited in line at Safaricom forever and then went to the Masai Market.

Of course we started the day with Java House.


Stan and Dave having a great time haggling.


After spending some time and not much money at the market, we drove into Nairobi to meet one of Stan's contacts for sign making and materials.  Stan was pretty excited to find suppliers for the sign business he is setting up in Matete for Pastor Moses. 

Then we drove across the city out to the ACTS bookstore on one of the most congested roads in Nairobi. However the bookstore was worth the wait.




Friday evening we met John and his wife Margaret and their new little girl, Eliana, at Brackenhurst for dinner.




Saturday February 7

We took off this morning for Matete after Stan and Dave packed the rig.


Along the way we stopped at the equator to take some pics.



In Eldoret we stopped to rest for a bit at Pastor Shadracks home. Stan appreciated the stop.



Damaris, Shadrack's wife, has almost completely recovered from a bout with pneumonia and a recent miscarriage.  Some of you were instrumental in her recovery through your prayers and financial support.  When Shadrack called me to tell me how sick Damaris was two weeks ago, he said that he wanted to take her to the doctor but they required payment in advance and he didn't have it. Through the generosity of many, we were able to send him the necessary funds to take her to the hospital. When he examined Damaris, the doctor said that if he had waited another hour, Damaris would have died. Praise God for His perfect timing!

We finally reached Matete around 7 pm and reunited Stan with his friend Pastor Moses.


ps. It is really hard to get Stan to smile for the camera. I have to offer him treats.

Sunday February 8

We had a wonderful time with the church in Matete this morning after a much needed rest and a great breakfast at our hotel, the Downhill Springs.






After the service, we ate lunch at Pastor Moses' home, and Stan played Santa Claus as he handed out gifts that he and Mary had packed for Moses' family.





Monday February 9

We spent the first part of Monday setting up the sign shop so that Stan could train the workers.



We had suggested the previous day that it might be possible for us to install power at Moses' residence which is only about 70 meters from the church and that we would calculate the cost to see if that was possible.  However when we got there Monday morning, Moses already had someone digging the cable trench.  Apparently we were committed to the project.  I'm just glad we had Dave along - he is a man of many talents. He took a look at the situation, calculated what we needed, and he and I and Frank headed off for Bungoma to buy the necessary materials while the ditch was being dug.



While we were in Bungoma, we met Dr. Charles for lunch and he showed us where he is setting up his new clinic.  He was awakened one morning a few weeks ago by someone who told him they were demolishing the building in which his old clinic was located.  His landlord had not seen fit to notify any of the tenants of the proposed demolition and he rushed to get his things out of the building they were demolishing.



I stayed in Bungoma as the conference in Amagoro was beginning that evening, and I will be staying there all week. By the end of the day, Stan and his team had produced their first printed t-shirt.


As always, there are interesting scenes on the road - like these guys hitching a free ride on a gas tanker.


Meanwhile, I was in Amagoro setting up for the first evening session of the pastor's conference.  Watched intently by a very interested group.



After setting up the church, we went for dinner by candlelight.


And then returned for the evening session. We have power and light in the church thanks to a generator.



Tuesday February 10

Tuesday morning Stan and Dave were back to work in Matete.


Of course every job has its fans.



Dave split his time between laying wire and helping Stan with his project.





And I was in Amagoro starting the first morning of the conference. Right now there are about 40 out of the 55 expected attendees. Since most of the pastors either walk or catch public transportation - matatus - arrival times tend to be variable.


Together for the Gospel provided these books for the pastors.


Every day we held a question and answer time after all the sessions were finished.  Pastor Reuben Luvanga does most of the interpretation for us and he does an excellent job.  At least that is what all the students are telling me since I don't speak Kiswahili.


Wednesday February 11

This morning I called to see how the Matete team was doing and found out that everything was going great, except that it seems the heat press was somehow damaged in the flight to Kenya.  Apparently one of the heating elements was broken and Dave spent the day trying to fix it.  We are praying that he can get it working because we already have orders to fill.


Since Stan and Dave had to go into Bungoma for parts, they decided to drive a little further and drop in on the conference at Amagoro and surprise me. Stan looks thrilled with the idea.



Back in Matete, Pastor Moses started burning the bricks they had previously made for the construction of the new shop for the sign business.




Thursday February 12

In Matete, Dave and Stan and Frank kept at it to get the heat press working and finish the wiring job.



In Amagoro we finished the 4th day of the pastors training.



I also received some pictures from a church in Turkana called Nataaba on the progress of the construction of their new building.  When we were in Lodwar last August, with money from the Brad Pederson Memorial Fund we had purchased materials for them to build this structure and delivered them to the church.  However, once they began building, a dispute ensued about ownership of the land and they had to relocate. They finally found a plot of ground not too far from the initial plot and began building last week.






The church was very grateful for the help and send their greetings and thanks to API USA and Summit Christian Fellowship and to all who contributed to the work.

They were very grateful as well for the bibles we sent them as most of them have never had a bible.



This is Pastor James, pastor of the church at Nataaba.


Friday February 13

Today was the last day of the pastors conference. And as with all the sessions, we spent a lot of time in question and answer mode. All the questions were very good and indicated a good grasp of the material we presented. I was very encouraged by the obvious passion to understand the word of God everyone displayed.




Unfortunately I did not get a lot of pictures of the conference but I did manage to capture Frank at his finest.  Frank is our API associate who does just about everything for us.  He's particularly good at waiting.


Frank probably had the hardest job of us all.  He was on the road early, driving from Matete to Bungoma to pick me up and deliver me to Amagoro.  And then turn around and head back to Matete to work with Stan and Dave.  Then he would come to Amagoro in the late afternoon to take me to Bungoma and head back to Matete.  He also was taking Dave all over to try and find parts for the heat press.  Unfortunately Dave had no success in finding the part he needed.  But he did manage to get the electricity hooked up to Pastor Moses' house.




The firing of the bricks was a success as they were unveiled today.





And everywhere Dave goes he finds friends and admirers. (It might have been the candy he carried in his pockets)


Saturday February 14

Today we held commencement exercises for two of our graduates - Pastor Dennis Makutu and Pastor Shadrack Mogesi Mwita who each earned their B th degrees from API School of Ministry.  Many thanks to the dean of the school, Dr. Franklin Clark for his passion and drive to bring this kind of education to the pastors of Kenya.










Sunday February 15

While Stan and Dave attended the service in Matete once again, I spoke in the church in Amagoro at the request of Pastor Leonard Ekea.  Currently the children's Sunday School classes are held outside while the adult Sunday School is going on in the auditorium.


The nursery is located inside.





In the evening, I joined Dave and Stan at Pastor Moses' home for a celebration dinner.  Judith, Moses' wife, showed off her new Wonder Bag she received from Mary Skinner as she made us dinner.  It was nice being all together after a week in separate locations for this last meal with the Matete crowd.




Monday February 16

Today was a travel day and we took off from Matete in the morning to travel down to Kilgoris.  Along the way we made a few stops.  The first was in the village of Majengo where two of our friends live.  The first stop was at Pastor Michael Omega's home. Michael is an evangelism trainer with E3, and he facilitates our evangelism training wherever we hold our Medical Mission Camps, to train the local pastors and church members in personal evangelism.


Stan was intrigued by the pig pen.



We also met with Pastor Reuben Luvanga who has a church in Majengo; and then we traveled down to Kisii where we were joined by Pastor Shadrack's wife, Damaris, who just finished her work there.  We got into Kilgoris around 7 pm and spent the night at the Seasons Hotel.

Tuesday February 17

We spent the morning and early afternoon visiting with some of the pastors in Kilgoris that have been part of our pastor's training conferences for a few years.  The leader of this group, Christ Gospel Churches, is Bishop Samson Kenteyia and we took the opportunity to visit his church that is in the middle of being remodeled and enlarged.





We also visited with Pastor Jackson Mongaine, of the Kenya Assemblies of God,who was a participant in our 2013 conference in Kilgoris.




We then traveled to Pastor Benson Ntuntai's new church plant in Olangabolo.  This church has received funds from the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund to raise a new structure.



We are hoping to raise more funds to help them finish the project and enclose the structure.  Pastor Benson also asked if we could bring our floor crew and help pour a cement floor. I told him that since the church was on top of the hill and far away from water, that might be difficult.  He replied that it was no problem - he would just bring the water up by donkeys.

We finally left Kilgoris that afternoon and traveled to Narok to spend the night before going to the game park at Maasai Mara.

Wedesday February 17

Today we spent touring the game park in Maasai Mara.  Although it is not the migration season, there are still plenty of animals to see.  Here are pictures of some of them.















 We took a lunch break at the oldest lodge in the park - Keekorok Lodge.


We also took some shots while on the border of Tanzania and Kenya in the park.



Along the Mara river, we took a nature walk with an armed park ranger.  I felt pretty safe until I asked him if he had ever had to fire his weapon at any aggressive predators on this walk, and he said, 'Oh yes, many times!'



Thursday February 19

We left Narok in the morning and drove back to Nairobi for the flight home that evening.  On our way to the airport, we stopped to eat at the Mombasa Road Java House and met the owner of the hotel we stayed at in Matete.  Her name is Daisy Kanainza and she is the youngest Senator in the Kenyan Parliament.  She was very interested in our work in Kenya.






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Traveling Home


Here we are in Amsterdam waiting on our flights home - Tim to Los Angeles, and Rob and I to Portland and on to Seattle. As you can see, we've gotten hold of a little bit of the U.S. here in the form of Starbucks to while away our four hour layover.




We've had an amazing trip as you can probably see if you've been following our blog. But we are thankful to be getting home after three weeks on the road. We are sincerely grateful to all of you who have kept us in your prayers.  The only time any one of us was not feeling well was two days ago when I think I got hold of a bad piece of apple pie at Java House in Nairobi.  But that was short-lived and I was feeling great the next morning.

Monday and Tuesday we filled with activity as we nailed down all the final tasks we had to complete before we left, but we also got some much-needed rest at the Hampton House. One of our last stops was at the Kenya Bible Society where we purchased some Bibles for the churches in Lodwar in Kiswahili and Turkana.  We had intended to purchase those in Lodwar, but we couldn't find any.  So we are shipping these to one of our pastor friends, George Lokwawi in Lodwar to deliver to the churches in Nataaba, Juluk, and Nakingol.

In His service for His glory,


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Can't wait to have you back!
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 06:43
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Maasai Mara


Friday afternoon we traveled to Narok where we spent the night.  Early on Saturday morning we got up to travel to the game park in Maasai Mara. The annual migration was on and there were literally millions of animals to be seen.  Here are some of the animals we saw.

Young male lions


Pretty bird




Guinea hens


Tembo - elephant



All of the lions we saw were resting


Buzzards enjoying a meal - circle of life stuff


Baby hippo


Sleeping croc - they sleep with their mouths open and birds come and pick their teeth


Mama simba and her cubs


Cape buffalo


The pride had made a kill and eaten and left this one to guard the food




Male osterich


Twiga - giraffe


A silhouette shot of the migration of wildebeestes


We had a great day in the park and as we were driving home, we came upon a wreck that had just happened minutes before.  Apparently it was a one-van accident when the driver lost control on the gravel road.  No one was badly hurt beyond scrapes and minor aches.  As we were miles from anywhere, we piled all the luggage of the passengers on the Prado and took six of them back with us to Narok, leaving the driver and one other to deal with the police.  They were still in shock from the accident, and they couldn't understand why perfect strangers would be so kind. Somehow we managed to squeeze ten of us in a vehicle that only comfortably fits seven. Good thing they were all young people and fairly thin.


Again we want to thank all of you for your prayers to God for us and we thank Him for His mercy and grace.  We are in Nairobi for two nights until we fly back to the US on Tuesday.



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Post Conference Stuff


It is Sunday evening and we are back in Nairobi so I'll try to catch you up on all the news. We have had a busy two days since the commencement exercises for the graduating student of the API School of Ministry.  Friday we held the commencement exercises, graduating four students: Pastors Fred Anyule and William Odhiambo with Certificates in Biblical Studies; Pastor Moses Biketi with a Bachelors in Theology; and Pastor Leonard Ekea with a Masters of Biblical Studies. Pastor Tim Bourgeois gave the commencement address and on behalf of the API School of Ministry and Covenant Bible Seminary I handed out the diplomas.  Here are some pictures of the event.








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Conference Notes - Eldoret


Today is Friday and the last session of the conference here in Eldoret was held yesterday.  Pastor Tim and I have been teaching through the book of Genesis and all the pastors and leaders here have let us know just how much they have been blessed by this study.  They were also blessed to receive a copy of Pastor Tim's 150 page Genesis Devotional that we had copied and bound into books here in Eldoret for them.  We will be holding a commencement exercise this morning for four graduates - Pastors William Odhiambo and Fred Anyule with Associate of Theology degrees, Pastor Moses Biketi with a Bachelor of Theology degree and Pastor Leonard Ekea with a Masters in Biblical Studies.

Here are some shots taken during the week.

Pastor Tim with Pastor Benson and Pastor Geoffrey


Rob with Pastor James


Reuban, William, Dennis, Jeremiah


William and Emily Odhiambo, Ursula Ekea, Fred Anyule


Valentine's baby


My little friend


Thanks to all of you who have been praying for this conference.  God has been good to us and we have been blessed with His presence, power and protection all through this time.


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Interview with Pastor Dennis

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Conference Notes - Eldoret


Sunday morning we all went to the church where Dr. Douglas, who works with Gary in the Medical Ministry Camps, is a pastor of evangelism. There were probably 1200 people in attendance and I was asked to give a greeting.


The speaker was a well-known preacher from Nigeria who was dressed in a stunning white, silk suit with alligator shoes and bold tie. He gave a show-stopping performance, capped off with an altar call that appealed for those who wanted a blessing from God to come forward with a 5000 schilling offering.  When not enough were inspired to bring the necessary, he then reduced it to a 2000 schilling blessing and got a lot more to come forward. Gary and Rob and I declined to purchase and walked out.

Sunday afternoon was spent in planning and prep for the conference that started on Monday.  And then Sunday evening we were invited to Dr. Douglas' house for dinner with his family. Unfortunately we didn't take any pictures but again we had a feast and a very enjoyable evening.

Monday morning we started the conference with prayer and devotions at six, breakfast at seven, and the first session at 8:30 going on until 9 at night. That is basically the schedule for the next 3 days culminating with a graduation ceremony on Friday.






And as you can tell from this picture - it is about a 50 degree difference between Lodwar and Eldoret.


Right now it is raining again and fairly cold as we end this first day with a hot cup of chai.


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Guest — Lyn
Hey guys, Continuing to pray and thanking God for this opportunity you three have had to bring Gospel truth to the pastors. Isn't... Read More
Tuesday, 26 August 2014 10:27
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Travel to Eldoret


Saturday afternoon Rob and Tim and I went to the Lodwar airport to get on our flight to Eldoret.  We also were able to take Leonard and Shadrack with us for their first airplane flight ever!  Initially, there were no seats available for this flight.  However, FLY 540 has never reckoned with the power of the God we serve.  We asked the Lord for seats on this flight Friday, and when we went to the office Saturday morning, they just happened to have two seats available. Imagine that! 

We also spent some time in the local market looking for those particular things that would remind us of Turkana.  I'm holding the local equivalent of a combination chair and pillow called an ekacholong.  All the men carry one of these around with them.



As news got out that mazungus were in the market - we were swamped by people who wanted to sell us their personal ekacholongs and other things.


When we got to the airport, we met a group of Spanish university students who had been in Kenya for a month and were on their way back to Nairobi for the flight back to Madrid.  We had about an hour to spend before the plane arrived so Shadrack and I began engaging these guys in conversation. We had a great discussion, asking them about their travels and life in Spain.  We also were able to share the gospel with them and they were engaged but ultimately uninterested.  However we told them that we would be praying for them so if you would join us in prayer for Paula, Alvare, Irene, and Jovi for Jesus to reveal Himself to them and save them we would appreciate that. They actually thanked us for even thinking about praying for them.


We arrived in Eldoret around 6:45 pm and were met by Gary and Frank who gathered us and all our luggage and we went to a great Chinese restaurant that Gary had discovered.  We had a feast!  Leonard and Shadrack were very skeptical about Chinese cuisine at first - but they were soon wolfing it down.


Tim and I are making sure our bags are getting off here and not traveling to Eldoret.



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After the conference ended Friday afternoon, we bought some iron sheets (corrugated metal roofing), nails, fasteners and all manner of other stuff and headed out to the church in Nataaba.  This congregation had purchased some land on which to build a new church and the Brad Pederson Memorial Fund donated about half the cost of putting up the structure.  On the way, Rob found a tower he wanted to climb.


When we arrived at the old church site, we were greeted by many of the congregation gathered together singing and dancing.


Needless to say they were very happy to see us.  I had come here in February of this year and smiles of recognition told me that they remembered my last visit.



She's actually smiling.



I think Leonard is preaching and Shadrack is interpreting - or they are just trying to pose for the camera.


We visited the site of the new church where construction was not at all advanced since I left there in February.  I hope to see a completed structure soon. Leonard has promised to send pictures.


On the way back to Lodwar we ran into a wandering herd of camels and Rob jumped out to take a closer view.


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Conference Notes Day 5 by Tim Bourgeois


We reached the end of the Lodwar Pastor Conference today. It was truly blessed by the Lord from beginning to end. Here are some of the significant things from my viewpoint. The pastors here were very engaged with the teachings and responsive to what they were learning. Having done three Pastor Conferences previously in India, these pastors were the most excited and appreciative for all the teachings. Many described to me how deeply they had been impacted by our studies and that their ministries to their churches would never be the same. The chairman of the pastor’s association was deeply thankful and wanted to stay in touch by email to continue to discuss the teachings and other theological issues. My email might be filled with pastor contact soon because many of the pastors asked to stay in contact.



I was particularly blessed by how in sync Mike and I were in our understanding of Ephesians and how our emphasis points lined up with each other as he taught chapters 1, 3, 5, and I taught chapters 2, 4, 6. It was like we had discussed notes in advance, but we had zero prior discussions. Since I was a last minute teaching replacement there simply wasn’t time to compare notes in advance. I was still completing my prep the night before the first session.

We were all blessed to learn on the way back to our rooms from the last session that this conference was the first time all the Lodwar pastors had come together for such an event.

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Guest — Kim Sandberg
Praise to our Father in heaven! I have been praying and hoping Pastors Mike amd Tim would be one and united in their teaching and... Read More
Friday, 22 August 2014 20:42
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Conference Notes Day 4



We had another full day of teaching and fellowship in Lodwar.  Today Pastor Tim taught through all of chapter four of Ephesians and I got through the first half of chapter five.  Again the response was overwhelming to us.  It seemed that every pastor wanted to tell Tim and Rob and I how blessed they have been by our coming to this desolate place to teach them the word of God. Apparently not too many Bible teachers make up to Lodwar.  I cannot count the number of invitations we have received to conduct conferences in other areas.  One pastor from a village on the border with Ethiopia assured me that it would be very easy because they had an airstrip there.

We have pastors from many different denominational stripes attending here and at least one former Muslim who was saved and is now pastoring a church. His heart's desire is to go to Saudi Arabia to minister the gospel to those people.



There are pastors here who have not been in the saddle for very long, and others who have served as pastors for decades.  But they all seem young in their enthusiasm for the word of God and the proclamation of the gospel.  One of my favorite young pastors is a guy named Spurgeon. I asked him how he got this unusual name and he told me that after he came to Christ, he got hold of a book of C.H. Spurgeon's sermons and he appreciated them so much he took his name.






All the pastors send their greetings!





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Conference Notes Day 3


Day three here at the Pastors conference was another full and rich time.  In talking to one of the pastors during our break time he struggled to put into words what the teachings have meant to him.  Finally he slapped his chest with his hand and said 'I have never heard anything about what you are teaching. My heart is burning with the word of God that you have brought.'  What this pastor, and the rest cannot fully realize is what a blessing it is to Tim and Rob and I to be able to share the word of God with men who are literally eating it up and are serious about the gospel.





During our break times, there is always a lot of discussion about the sessions and Tim and I are both very busy answering further questions.


TGC, Together for the Gospel, has a program called Theological Famine Relief that makes great pastoral books and theological tools available for free to pastors in third world countries like Kenya.  We have taken many books from this organization to the pastors in Kenya and this year we took two boxes of books entitled 'What is the Gospel?' to hand out.  Pastor Tim also brought along 160 copies of a book he wrote to hand out as a resource to these pastors as well.


Rob and Tim took some time to walk up to the top of the hill on which this facility is built to look at the statue erected on the summit by the Catholic Church for 60 million Kenyan schillings.  I think they wanted to see if they got their money's worth.  The consensus was 'probably not'. 



When Pastor Tim was teaching, he referred to their hike to the statue and the interpreter instead of saying statue said that they hiked up to the 'dead guy'. They also saw some interesting things along the way.


We call this the 'Kuku Matatu' - the chicken taxi


This guy was trying out some flip flops


And the view from the top was tremendous




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Guest — Sandy bourgeois
Mike, thank you again for the blog…we're all loving it! The pictures are fabulous!
Thursday, 21 August 2014 10:30
Guest — Judy Ross
Love reading the blog and the pictures are wonderful. I got chills when I read about how much the word of God and the teachings m... Read More
Thursday, 21 August 2014 11:58
Guest — Butch Baker
Hello Mike, Tim and Rob, Our Lord is moving His word forward in Kenya, bless you for faithfully serving while many miles from home... Read More
Thursday, 21 August 2014 13:07
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Conference Notes Day 2


It's Tuesday evening here and we have just finished our first full day of the conference.  We have 70 pastors registered and attending and we've had a great beginning day here.  We are teaching through the book of Ephesians and the pastors are enjoying it very much. It is very encouraging to speak to such a hungry, enthusiastic audience and Tim and Rob and I have been very much blessed by the response.


Pastor Tim preparing for his session











Great sunset over Lodwar - Nice portrait too!



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Conference Notes Day 1


Monday was a fairly quiet day for us as we finished our preparations for the first conference session in the evening.  The original plan was for us to visit a church in Kapua, about 75 km away, but given that we were starting Monday evening, the unreliability of transportation, and the incredibly bad roads, we decided that discretion was the better part of valor and chose to stay and finish our preparations so that the pastors we had come to teach wouldn't be disappointed.  But word had already gone out to the church there that we were coming, and there is no cell reception in the area to inform them that we weren't, so it was decided that Pastor Leonard would be our delegate to them instead. Leonard and Pastor George, who has been our driver, went in our place and brought back some wonderful pictures of the church there.






As we had accurately assumed, Leonard and George did not make it back in time for the start of the evening session, but they brought back news that the church in Kapua sends its greetings and hoped that next time the mazungus would make it.  The evening session went well and we got back to our rooms around 10.

The venue for the conference is a Catholic High School that has some very good facilities. 40 pastors from outside Lodwar are rooming at the school, with about 40 coming during the day from Lodwar.




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Desert Adventure


We had a very interesting Sunday.  In the morning we visited two churches, one right outside of Lodwar called Juluk, led by Pastor Beatrice Natto, and the other in town at Pioneer Ministries, led by Pastor George Lokwawi.  Pastor Tim spoke at Juluk and I spoke at Pioneer Ministries.



In the afternoon, we took a trip to Lake Turkana where there is a small resort. Pastor Shadrack characterized this trip as simply 'entertainment'. which as it turned out was anything but entertaining.  It was however an adventure.  Things were going fairly well (given the conditions of the Kenyan roads) when we developed some mechanical failure in the vehicle about 12 km from our destination.  Normally this wouldn't have been a problem as we could call someone to pick us up.  But apparently this place was a vast dead zone for cell reception. Pastor George and Pastor Shadrack attempted to effect repairs but things were beyond mere roadside mechanics.



Pastor Leonard and I decided to start walking to the resort to see if we could get a vehicle to take us back to Lodwar. Rob stayed with the vehicle to lend moral support to the others.



As you can guess, this area is rather devoid of helpful passing vehicles.


But there are goats.


Eventually Leonard and I did run into a guy on a motorbike who agreed to take us the rest of the way into the resort. He wanted to take both of us but I'm not really a fan of three on a motorbike.


Meanwhile I stayed in the shade to await his return.


I finally got to the resort an hour later, after one minor wreck and a skinned knee and shaken confidence in the driver.  Our plan was to return with a vehicle to pick the others up, come to the resort, have lunch and then hire a drive back to Lodwar.  Meanwhile, ignorant of the planning going on back at the broken Land Rover, Rob was put on a rare passing vehicle to take him to Lodwar with George to get a mechanic to come and fix the car. When Leonard arrived to pick them up, only Shadrack was there.  Leonard brought him back to the resort where we negotiated a steep fee for a vehicle to take us to town.  Unfortunately, they demanded cash in advance but we were fairly stuck there so we paid.  It was now about 9:30 pm.

All was going well until we had passed the broken down Rover and gone about 3 km when the rear wheel of our vehicle decided to give up the ghost. My thought was 'Okay, we'll just put on the spare and proceed'.  Which would have worked had the spare been aired up recently.  It was just as flat as the other.  Thinking quickly, but not very soundly, it was decided that Shadrack and the driver would walk back to the abandoned Rover and pull a tire to put on our vehicle.  I took a nap.

When Shadrack and the driver returned, they had no tire with them as they had discovered that it was a much bigger tire and wouldn't do the trick.  We were pretty much out of options at that point and I was beginning to think I'd be camping in this desert overnight.  But we had prayed earlier, asking God to send a vehicle our way to take us to Lodwar; and just as I was settling down to go back to sleep, a car showed up. 

It was a small wagon type vehicle with four people already in it.  I was squeezed into the middle in the back seat between two rather large women, while Shadrack and Leonard were put in the boot - the cargo area that was about 3 feet by 3 feet.  Thus ensconced, we slowly made our way home. It became rather obvious that these travelers had enjoyed a bit too much of the happy juice, as my companion in the second seat kept offering me a drink from the bottle of Bailey's Irish Cream she was finishing.  I kept praying.

We finally arrived at our place of residence early Monday morning around 12:15.  We got out of the car, thanked God and these well-meaning Good Samaritans, and went to bed. 



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We loved this one! The girls laughed so hard about the part when you had to squish in that wagon. So glad to hear of how God has b... Read More
Wednesday, 20 August 2014 08:45
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Travel to Lodwar

We left for the airport in Nairobi for a flight to Lodwar. There were some delays in getting some necessary supplies for the trip which put us on the road behind schedule.  Nairobli traffic was its usual hectic mess.  At one point on the way to the airport we finally got up some speed just to find out a car was crossing multiple lanes between other cars and we were destined for a high-speed impact.  All of us felt the hand of God guide the car amoungst the schreeching tires and certain impact.  We came through with un-belief that the crash did not occur and then thanked God for his obvious protection.


 The flight to Eldoret and on to Lodwar was uneventful although we were all a bit fatigued from the trip; some of us more than others.


We arrived safely to the Lodwar International Airport:


A previous flight was not so lucky:


We gathered our bags in front of the terminal.



After packing up we made it about a half mile before we had a flat tire in town. It was a great chance to meet some of the locals.


It is now Sunday morning and we are well rested and heading out to worship in some of the local churches.


Please continue to pray for the team.  Your prayers are felt and are critical to our time here.


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Guest — Kim Sandberg
The blog is wonderful! Thank you for keeping us updated. It encourages prayer and is simply fun to read and see of your God-dir... Read More
Sunday, 17 August 2014 10:47
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Pastors Conference Lodwar and Eldoret 2014

Pastors Conference Lodwar and Eldoret 2014






We made it to Nairobi late Thursday night after a couple of flights – Seatac to Paris; Paris to Nairobi – and arrived at the Hampton House around 10:30. After a good nights sleep, Rob and Tim and I went to one of my favorite spots, the Java House, for a thoroughly western breakfast of eggs, bacon and toast...and of course some of that famous Kenyan coffee.




We went to the Village Market to exchange our dollars for schillings and to take care of our communication needs and spent a couple of hours at the Maasai Market looking (and occasionally buying) some of the local products. In between, we met up with Kenneth Mbugua, an associate pastor at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Nairobi. I had contacted Kenneth prior to coming because we have been using his book, Gaining the World, Losing the Soul – How the Prosperity Gospel Distorts the Good News to great effect in our pastors conferences. He was very encouraged by our ministry to his people here in Kenya and we invited him to come to our conference in Eldoret so he could see firsthand what we are doing. He indicated that he would probably come up for a day or so while we are there.






We then spent two hours in Nairobi traffic to go to our favorite bookstore – ACTS – on the campus of the Africa International University, where we loaded up on books to supply the pastors at the conferences.

We head out tomorrow at 3 pm for Lodwar and the Pastors Conference there. We're flying there because of the extremely bad roads that are often frequented by bandits.  But the downside to flying there is that our weight limit is severely challenged. Please pray that the airline will grant us much favor with regard to excessive baggage fees.


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API Service Project February 2014

Monday February 10

We arrived in Nairobi last night about 8:30 pm and were picked up by Frank at the airport. We spent the night at Brackenhurst near Limuru Town and the next morning went into Village Market to exchange our money and buy some stuff for the trip – stopping of course at Java House for coffee and beans.


We drove through to our first night's stay at Bishop Stam's – a Catholic retreat center around 35 minutes from our first project site – Matete.


Tuesday February 11

We had a serviceable breakfast at the center and then drove to Matete for the first day's work. The first order of business was shifting all the rock and sand by wheelbarrow to the actual work site; and drawing hundreds of gallons of water from a well and storing it onsite for our project. The Kenyans do concrete work a little differently than we do – using manpower instead of machinery so we all got a real good workout.

The first course to the floor consists of a soil called maram that is laid about 3 inches deep. Then the next course consists of large rock, sand, and a thin layer of cement that is laid out on the ground and then mixed together with water, loaded into wheelbarrows and poured on the church floor. The top is left with a rough finish to facilitate the final layer after drying for three days. We were all pretty tired when we got done today. But it was a good day and we all were happy that we finished this part.

Wednesday 12

Today we traveled from Bishop Stam's to Amagoro to begin the first phase of our second project. This church is about twice as big as Matete and we began by excavating the entire interior of the church. The soil is very fine sand and we created quite a duststorm inside before we were through. Our health and safety expert, Butch, was not happy with the work conditions so we mazungus mostly stayed outside during this phase. But we all got busy as next we filled the floor with the first course of maram.

It was at this time I was informed that we had a water problem – to wit – no water on site. So a plan was quickly drawn up with the local water agency to run a pipe 350 meters to the church. The problem was that a 12 inch wide by two feet deep ditch needed to be dug, and then the pipe laid to bring water to the site. This was around noon today. We needed water by that day to wet down and compact the maram so we had to move quick. Fortunately, everybody responds to the prospect of earning money here so we found seven guys who wanted to work, negotiated a price and they went to work digging over a thousand feet of ditch in a little over five hours – by hand! The water company came and laid the pipe and then the whole thing was backfilled. It was well after dark by that time, however the four of us had gone back to Bungoma by then.


We moved our lodging to Bungoma today because it is really more central to both Matete and Amagoro and we are staying at a lovely hotel called the Elegant.

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