By Jeff Philbrick
The 16 person Uganda Team is entering day two of our second ministry focus - working in the school at the Word of Life Fellowship in the capital city of Kampala. The school here is lovely, very different from the extreme poverty we witnessed in the northern villages last week. Each of our missionaries are paired up in lower grades, basically serving as a teacher's aid during this busy Holy Week. The teachers are working hard on term-end responsibilities, as well as preparing their class for their part in the annual Easter pageant. The JR students went to the homes of their Host Family yesterday and enjoyed an overnight with their new friends.
Last week in the northern villages, we visited schools (day and boarding) that have enrollments ranging from 500-1000 students. The entire community lives with no running water (common hand pumped wells), no automobiles other than the occasional motorbike, limited electricity, and simple homes beyond most Westerners definition of simple. The roads can be best described as jeep trails or farm roads in America. The need - physical, emotional, spiritual - is almost beyond description. And yet, not only did we find them welcoming and joyful, but very open to the source of life our Gospel presentation offered them. Our Team created and prepared a 25 minute dramatic presentation of the Gospel, followed by a 30 minute "small" group (50ish kids) interaction. The JR students testified of the fruit of the many conversations, and were surprised to learn that at each school, many of the children had never encountered a westerner. Our message was warmly received and our gift of the Gospel of Christ has ministered to their deepest needs.
As Team Leader, I want to thank our readership for your support and prayers for our Journey. Our students (and the adult team too) are experiencing things most Americans only hear about in the media. Their understanding of the world has been dramatically challenged as they have lived and worked with the estimated 1 billion people worldwide who live on less than $1 per day. Expect them to come home changed, challenged, matured (and very worn out) - Praise God for all things!