API Summer Conference Lodwar

It's Wednesday afternoon and I'm back in Nairobi after a long circle route that took Frank and I from Nairobi, south to Narok, west to Kilgoris, north to Kisumu and Kakamega and Matete, west again to Bungoma, and then east to Eldoret and finally back to Nairobi.  We had meetings with several churches and pastors along the way, renewing old acquaintances and establishing new ones. We met with Maasai Pastor Stephen Muntet in Narok to discuss details of the conference in the spring of 2018, and then we sped off to Kilgoris to meet with several pastors there.

One of the pastors was Sailas Makalluh who has planted several churches in the Kilgoris area. API helped construct a building for the church in Magena last year.

Since then, Sailas has planted two more churches that need buildings.  The first is in Muntenkuar where the church has purchased a plot of ground. There are no other churches in this village and they are in need of a building in which to worship. We gave them some funds to begin construction from the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund, and we hope to send more soon.

The second church is in a place called Kiango which is on the border of Kisii County and Narok County.  One of the reasons Sailas chose this place to plant a church is because of the continuing friction between the Maasai in Narok County and the Kisii in Kisii county. His prayer is that this would be a church of peace between the tribes. There is a very long history of violence and war between these two groups and Pastor Sailas is convinced the only way to peace is when these tribes come to Christ.  Right now, they are worshipping in the open air when the weather is favorable.

The church of Kiango was given this plot of land by the owner who came to Christ after he was healed from a very serious sickness when Sailas and the church prayed for him. His testimony was that it was a very small thing for him to give this land to God who healed him and saved him.

Frank and I were invited to dinner at the home of another pastor friend of ours, Benson Ntuntai and his wife Ruth.  

They again expressed their thanks and the thanks of his entire church for the construction of their church and the installation of a concrete floor through the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund. They are now also using this building as a primary school.

Since this will likely be one of the last posts for this trip, I thought I'd leave you with a few random shots that didn't make it on the previous posts. Here are some from our trips to the villages in Lodwar.  Below is the village of Namagart.

Food for the village of Naotin.

The village of Moruese.

The village of Juluk.

We also handed out audio bibles and flip charts and gave many gospel presentations in these villages. Pastor George gives a very dramatic and effective presentation.

The kids were always curious about the muzungus (white guys)

They also like the lollipops we handed out at every stop.

Getting water is a daily chore for these people. These women have dug a hole in the river bed to get water.

And the termite mounds are everywhere.  For some reason they fascinate me. Some of them, like this one, are massive.

Thank you all who have partnered with us for this trip.  Your prayers and financial support have been invaluable. To God be the glory.

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API Summer Conference - Lodwar

 

It's Friday morning in Nairobi and I'm putting on all the warm clothes I have. Coming from 90+ degree temperatures in Lodwar, it feels like winter here. The past week in Lodwar I spent delivering food and audio bibles to several villages. Thanks to the generosity of many, we were able to deliver around 5 tons of food to this drought-stricken place. From Monday to Wednesday, we reached nine villages with these desperately needed supplies of food.

I don't know why, but these massive termite mounds are a continuing source of fascination to me.  They literally dot the landscape in Turkana.

Before I left on Thursday, we took another run out to Nareng'lup to view the progress on the church building.

Note the OSHA approved ladder.

Almost done.

We were a bit disappointed that the work was not yet completed but perhaps it was due to the fact that the workers had less than desirable living conditions.  Below is a picture of their campsite.  A scrawny thorn tree and makeshift windbreak provide what can only be described as bleak comfort. They are actually sleeping on the doors they brought for the church.

Frank and I are traveling to Narok today to meet with Maasai pastor, Stephen Muntet, to plan our spring conference in Olulaimutia and discuss the progress of those students from the village. We travel on Saturday to meet with pastors in Kilgoris.  Thank you all for your support and prayers.

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API Summer Conference - Lodwar

It's Sunday evening in Lodwar and I'm here in my bungalow at St. Teresa's as the monkeys are playing rugby on the roof. Tim, Rob, and Roger flew to Nairobi yesterday afternoon after we had a wonderful lunch at Pastor George Lokwawi's home. He had his son prepare the goat we were given in Nareng'lup and he was tasty! Tim stayed at the airport in Nairobi to catch his flight home to the U.S. later that night, and Frank picked up Roger and Rob to spend the night in Nairobi before heading down to Olulaimutia and the game park in Masaai Mara.

 

Before they left we had a wonderful graduation ceremony at the conference site Friday night with three graduates – Pastors Peter Ewoton and Christopher Tioko both graduated with a Bth and Pastor Reuben Luvanga graduated with an Mth. Roger Johnson gave the commencement address and we had the recently elected local Minister of Parliament for this region in attendance.

 

Saturday morning, we went back out to Nareng'lup to check on the progress of the church building before lunch at George's and checking in at the Lodwar airport.

 

Of course Roger never misses a chance to be with the kids.

And this is a common sight, rolling containers of water home from the water hole.

And carrying them on your head.

Sunday morning, George, his wife Grace and I headed out east of Lodwar to a village in the bush called Lokurumka to attend Sunday morning worship at one of the churches planted by George and deliver food to the village.  Because we were so overloaded with food, one of the tires went flat, but thankfully this was only a minor hitch in our plans. George and I have changed a lot of tires together and in no time we were on our way again.

The service was well-attended and after George shared the Good News with the audio bible and flip charts, and I gave a short gospel presentation, 12 of the villagers stepped forward to trust Christ. Again, we were amazed at the number of men that came forward!

We brought over 1/2 ton of food with us and with very willing hands to help distribute it everyone in the village got plenty.  Thank you John-Mark and all who gave so that we could give out.

Thank you all for your continued prayers for the work here.  We have several more villages to visit with the gospel and food so keep praying.  God is at work! 

 

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API Summer Conference - Lodwar

It's Thursday evening and we have just finished our fourth day of the conference. We expected a few more than 90 pastors and church leaders, but we have 133 here as of Tuesday. Needless to say, this is a great blessing but also a great challenge as it strains our budget. But God has been faithful to allow us to feed and house all the extra people by stretching the ugali, sukomoweke and goat meat to feed everyone!

The response to the exposition of 1st and 2nd Peter with myself and Tim, and Roger's training on Children's Ministry has been tremendous. We are having conversations everyday with pastors who cannot thank the team enough for coming to share these truths with them. We have pastors who have traveled from long distances to get here and they have told us has been worth every effort to come. One pastor shared with me that he came back this year because of what he got in our conference last year. He said the ministry of API has revolutionized his church as he has put into practice what he learned during our Shepherd to Shepherd conference last August. “These teachings have challenged us and changed us as a church and as leaders as we have begun putting things in order according to the word of God we learned from you.” Thanks be to God!

The training has also sparked lively discussion groups after the sessions.

We will end the conference tomorrow night with a graduation of three of our API School of Ministry students who have earned their degrees.  Here are some random pictures from the conference. I actually got a picture of the elusive Rob.

Camels on the way to market

Mbuzi (goat) on the way to lunch.

My new shower friend.

Pastor George and his faithful Land Rover

We have also begun the construction of the new church building at Nareng'lup where we were this pasto Sunday. We hope to be finished by the first of next week. A special thanks to all of you who have contributed to the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund to make this happen!  Here are a few photos of the ongoing work.

 

Thank you all for your prayers. Continue in them for us. God is doing great things through your prayers.

 

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API Summer Conference - Lodwar

It is Sunday evening here in Lodwar and it's starting to cool off from the heat of the day. The bats and bugs are out and we are in our wonderfully air-conditioned rooms. The team arrived in Lodwar Saturday afternoon and we are staying at the St. Teresa Pastoral Retreat Centre where we have stayed many times before.

Saturday evening we hosted a dinner for the executive team of the Lodwar Pastor's Fellowship which has graciously invited us for the past four years to hold a conference for the pastors in the region.

Sunday morning we saddled up and drove about 20 km out to the village of Nareng'lup where we held Sunday services. It was a great time of worship and the word and several men who came to see the musungus (white guys) responded to the message by trusting Christ. I've actually never seen so many men respond to the gospel before. Usually it is the women and children, but here we had eight men come forward.

Pastor George Lokwawi demonstrated the audio bible and gospel flip charts we gave to Pastor Paul for his church. These audio bibles are a great help in the church to teach and train illiterate people in the word of God. Thanks to everyone who contributed to buy these tools. We will be visiting many more villages in the coming days to deliver more of these bibles to the rural churches.

After the service we distributed the food we had brought to all the people who came. Thanks again to all who contributed for this. Again, we will be bringing food to all the villages we visit in the coming days. We were able to purchase quite a bit of food because of the generosity of many.

As a parting gift to the team, the church gave us a goat so we could enjoy some nyama chomo (barbecued goat).  The goat wasn't really enthused about the idea, but we loaded him up anyway in the Land Rover and brought him home for a future meal.

On our way home we dropped off some more maize at the pastor's home.

And with joyful hearts, everyone went to their homes with loads of food.

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API Summer Conference - Lodwar

We've been in Nairobi since Wednesday evening. Rob and Roger arrived about an hour before me and cooled their heels with Frank at the airport Java House until I arrived. We then drove to our hotel, the Mayweather, in the Kiambu suburbs of Nairobi. Thursday was spent exhanging money, buying supplies and meeting with a pastor who had contacted us from our website wanting to invite us come and train the pastors in his association.

Pastor Benson Mutulu and his son Isaac

Pastor Benson Mutulu heads up a group of about 35 pastors in the Satellite suburb of Nairobi where they have begun what they call a Leadership Discipleship Institute. Their goal is to train up pastors and church leaders in their area and they are looking to partner with API to do that. Thursday evening we had a great dinner at one of my favorite places in Nairobi, 360 Pizza.

Friday morning we had breakfast at the Nove Coffee Roasters (funny how we always end up in coffee joints!) and spent the morning finishing out our supply list and bargaining for baskets.

The basket market

 Bargaining for baskets

Success!

This afternoon we rested, repacked our books and luggage for the flight tomorrow to Lodwar and worked on details of the conference. Both Rob and Frank, our Kenyan associate, are working through severe colds so we would ask for your prayers for their health and endurance. Pray that neither Roger nor I would catch whatever they have! We would also ask you to pray that Fly540, the airline we take tomorrow, would be gracious to us in their consideration of overweight baggage fees. We have lots of books and materials we need to get to Lodwar and we have to take them with us on this flight.

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API Pastor's Conference Spring 2017

April 13, 2017

Nairobi

Stan and I flew back to Nairobi last night and we are flying back to the U.S. tonight at 11:55 pm. Love those late night flight times! Tuesday we traveled out to Nakepokan, the village where we helped build a church last August.

We were actually going to visit Nakepokan and another village where we want to help the church put up a building, but we ended up staying in Nakepokan most of the day, taking care of some important church business.

Essentially we were looking to help facilitate reconciliation between two pastors and I am happy to report that God was gracious to us and the brothers were fully reconciled and unity restored. Keep Nakepokan in your prayers as the work is difficult and the challenges are many. Pray for Pastor Thomas Eipa and his congregation. The drought here is severe and the animals are dying, as well as many people.

The meeting here lasted so long that we went right through lunch and by the time we ended, we needed to head back to Lodwar so we wouldn't be traveling at night. But along the way we found a nice place to take a break from the rough road and the heat to picnic. George's wife, Grace, had brought a thermos of hot water to make coffee and tea, and we had some biscuits and crackers, and some beef jerky I had brought along.

I am deeply indebted to Nick Dawson for his contribution to this trip by buying new tires for George's Land Rover!  We've driven many hours and a few hundred kilometers on this trip to Turkana and not one flat or blowout! George is very grateful to Nick also for his generosity.

 

Today Stan and I are wrapping things up in Nairobi, getting ready to fly home. It has been a great trip for both of us and God has blessed us in so many ways. Stan has a blog of this trip as well, and since he and I were in different parts of the country for many days, you can read about his work in Matete by going to: http://staninkenya.blogspot.com/ 

Here are some random shots of our last day. 

Fueling up at our favorite petrol station.  Thought I might see Chuck.

Stopped at a new coffee Roaster - Nove Coffee.

Stan instructing his Maasai friend on how to use the internet.

Stan and Frank at the mall. Don't they look angelic?

Stan and I would like to thank all those who have supported us for this trip and have been faithfully praying for us.  God has answered your prayers bountifully.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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API Pastor's Conference Spring 2017

April 10, 2017

Lodwar

It's Tuesday morning in Lodwar and it looks like another hot day in Turkana. Sunday morning I was invited to preach at Pastor Boniface's church, the Free Pentecostal Church, while Stan stayed at the hotel to rest up from his busy week down in Matete. I had flown from Nairobi after our conference in the Mara and Stan joined me when we touched down in Eldoret and we flew on together to Lodwar, getting in around 5 pm on Saturday. Stan immediately felt at home here in Turkana because it reminds him so much of Yuma, Arizona.

Sunday afternoon, we met with pastor's George Lokwawi and Boniface Lokuruka to plan out the week. We have several churches to visit and a church building to put up. We also decided to bring food, as well as building supplies to the church we are putting up in Lorugum because the drought has really raised the price of food around here and many people do not have enough to eat.

 

Monday morning was spent gathering all the supplies we need to take with us and we eventually set off for Lorugum around 3.

 

On the way, we stopped at the first church we helped to build in this area, Nataaba, and spent some time greeting the members who had gathered. The church building has become an attraction for people to build their homes around and there is quite a little community now around the church.

After an hour with the people of Nataaba, we continued on to Logurum. We met the pastor, Luka, and the church in the little building they have been renting. Pastor George and pastor Boniface took them through part of the first lesson in the gospel flip charts and they were so excited that it was in their own language.

Then we offloaded the food we had brought and went down the road to the plot of land they had been given for the church.

The fences in Logurum

The building site

As the supplies were being offloaded, George, Boniface, and the funde (contractor building the church), were making final changes to the building plans.

Stan was directing operations.

The funde and his workers will camp here until the building is done.

By the time we had finished, the moon was rising and the light was failing and we ended up traveling back through the desert to Lodwar, arriving around 9 pm.

 

 

 

 

 

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API Pastor's Conference Spring 2017

 

 

 

 

April 9, 2017

Lodwar

 

It is Sunday evening in Lodwar and several days have passed since we last updated you all. I finally got to a place where the internet is fast enough to email and post pictures so I'll try to catch you up.

 

We had a wonderful time in Oloolaimutia with the Maasai pastors last week. We arrived Monday morning where we checked into Manyatta Camp overlooking part of the Maasai Mara game park.  From the hotel open air dining room, we could watch elephants, giraffes, antelope, gazelles, wildebeests, zebras and other wild animals as they moved through the part of the park we could see.  It was a great way to begin the day. 

Home sweet home for a week. 

We began our conference last Monday evening at the Enkitoria Church with about 30 pastors.

The rest of the pastors were with their animals moving their herds of cattle, sheep and goats further south into Tanzania in search of pasture as the drought has hit these people very hard. Their animals are dying for lack of food and water and as a result the people are suffering. And yet the testimony of these pastors remains strong. “God is good and He will provide” they tell me. “Even if times are hard now, He will bring us into abundance.”

By Wednesday, most of the pastors and leaders had arrived to take part in the rest of the conference. Our host, Pastor Stephen Muntet, told me near the end of the week that “the pastors were crying to him to have more of these conferences because they were so helped by the word”.  Give God the glory! According to him, we were the first missionaries to come and hold this kind of conference, and this was the first time so many pastors from different denominations had gathered together in unity. There were 86 pastors and church leaders from 8 different denominations that came to this conference and they all expressed their deep appreciation to us personally at one time or another. The pastors are already planning the next conference and they expect 200 to come this time.  Their hunger for the word of God is amazingly deep and they received the word with great joy.

I am deeply grateful to my longtime friend, Pastor Shadrack Mwita who made several trips to Mara to organize this conference. Shadrack was in charge of all the daily logistics of the conference and he did an outstanding job. I don't think we've ever eaten better at any of our conferences.

Market day in Oloolaimutia.

The pastor who hosted the conference in his church, Reverend Samuel Muntet, the brother of Stephen, is building a new clinic to replace the old one he built years ago. His was the first clinic in Oloolaimutia and he will expand the services of the clinic to include labor and delivery rooms, long-term care rooms, a pharmacy and a lab.

We also gave out some audio bibles in the Maasai language along with the gospel flip charts as many people in the surrounding area are still illiterate. On my last trip to Mara, I had given Stephen one of those audio bibles and he told me he has been using it to great effect in evangelism and discipleship in his church.

One of the highlights, at least for the pastors, was the ceremony making Shadrack and I honorary Maasai.

I think I'm a little too white for this. But they insisted. One of my staunchest supporters in the Maasai thing was Pastor Timothy.

Please pray for the churches in Mara that God would increase the love and unity among them and that the gospel would go out in power throughout the Maasai. Pray too that God would have mercy on their land and visit it with rain. 

 

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API Pastors Conference Spring 2017

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Narok

I know it's past time for you all to be updated so I will try to summarize our first week here in Nairobi.

 

Stan and I arrived in Nairobi late Tuesday night where we were met by our associate John Kamau and taken to our hotel. The next morning we had breakfast at one of the many Java House restaurants around town and spent some time exchanging money and buying some necessary supplies at the Nakumat at Village Market. I went back to the hotel to work on the conference presentations and John took Stan downtown Nairobi to buy vinyl and other printing supplies he is taking to Matete.

 

Gary, Lesley and their friend George arrived at our hotel late Wednesday afternoon from their time in western Kenya where they were doing some infrastructure work for the medical camps and we got to spend some time catching up and doing some strategizing and future planning. Thursday we all had dinner together before Frank took them to the airport for their flight home.

Friday was spent buying books for the pastor's conference at the ACTS Bookstore and picking up the gospel flip charts for the audio bibles we are taking to the Masaai and Turkana people.

We also delivered some bibles to a pastor who is friends with one of my friends, Paul Moffet, in Puyallup. They had made connections in Israel in 2015 and Paul sent me with a suitcase full of bible to give to him.

Frank, another one of our Kenyan associates, and I took Stan to the airport to fly to Eldoret. Pastor Shadrack picked him up on the other end and delivered him safely to Pastor Moses in Matete.  We also managed to visit the brand new Two Rivers Mall near our hotel - the biggest mall in East Africa.

On their way out of the airport, Shadrack had forgotten to pay for his parking so he was ushered out of the line and back to the pay booth. By the time they had gotten out of the airport down the road a bit, the car that was in front of them as they were trying to exit the airport before they were turned back had been hit head on by another. Shadrack was sure that the Lord had prevented them from exiting the first time so as to miss the accident. A minor inconvenience was a blessing for Stan and Shadrack in disguise.

 

Frank and I arrived in Narok this afternoon after leaving Nairobi. We had attended the Immanuel Baptist Church in Nairobi this morning where I reconnected with the lead pastor whom I had met two years ago. I'll spend the night here and travel to Oloolaimutia tomorrow morning where the conference will take place, and Frank will head to Matete to be with Stan this week. Because of the weight allowance, Stan left all the heavy bags with Frank to bring with him.

 

Thank you all for your prayers and support for this work. I know that your prayers are working to keep us full of joy and peace in the Lord.  

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Still Thursday September 1, 2016

I mentioned in my last post that after the rest of the team left for the US, I flew back to Lodwar.  I had several meetings with pastors there and handed out the rest of the audio bibles and flip charts that I had had to leave in Nairobi when we went to Lodwar the first time. Although I don't have any pictures of this, the expressions on the faces of the people when they hear the Bible for the first time in their own mother tongue is priceless; and all of them were insistent that I tell those who helped supply the word of God that this was a great ministry to them.  Thank you to all who contributed to this.

On Tuesday I traveled back out to Nakepokan to see the progress on the new church building.  Pastor Thomas was actually weeping as he told me that they had been meeting under a tree for 12 years and never imagined they would be able to have a structure like this. He wants everyone who helped make this happen that they are forever grateful that brothers and sisters they don't even know made a dream a reality. The workers were not quite done when I leftt I was assured that by Wednesday they would have finished.

They even let me drive a nail or two.

Around 1 in the afternoon, (96 degrees in the shade!) we broke for lunch in Pastor Thomas' dining room. Much to my surprise, it was at least 10 -15 degrees cooler in here.

Pastor Thomas is on the left and Pastor George is on the right. George began the work here in Nakepokan and handed it off to Thomas.

Pastor Thomas also told me that now they can have a school in this building for their children, most of whom are not able to attend school because they are so far away.  Thanks again to all those who contributed to the Brad Pederson Memorial Building Fund to make this happen. 

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Thursday September 1, 2016

It's Thursday evening at Jomo Kenyatta Airport and I'm waiting for my flight to board. It's been action packed over here for the last three weeks and I thought I'd better take advantage of the down time here at the airport to post some more.  It's now 7 pm and my flight leaves at 11:59. (Might as well say Friday!)  The picture above was taken at the home of Pastor Thomas in Nakepokan and was one of the best meals ever!  Goat stew, ugali and nyama choma (barbequed goat).

The rest of the team left for the US this past Monday as I flew back to Lodwar to meet with some of the pastors individually, hand out more audio bibles and flip charts, and take a look at the progress of the church building in Nakepokan.

The second conference was held as you know in Mwamba and we had 69 pastors and church leaders attend, many for the first time. One comment we heard again and again from some of the pastors who have had at least a little bible school was 'We never went so deep in bible school as we have here in one week'. 

Ben did another great job teaching on the sanctity of human life and engaging these leaders in good discussions on what they are doing in their churches to help women and children in crisis. Ben also took time during the week to visit the Crisis Pregnancy center in Eldoret, bringing videos, brochures, and informational packets from the CareNet Centers in the US to help this center in its work. Ben was even talking about seeing what we could do to get this center an ultrasound machine so I won't be surprised if Ben takes off for Kenya again next year with one under his arm.

During the conference, we stayed at a hotel about 20 minutes from the conference venue.  One of my team assignments was coffee maestro.  And as you can see, it was not only room service, but window service.

We were glad to reunite with Frank after missing him for the Lodwar conference.  Frank is our API USA associate based in Nairobi and although he is our main driver, he does it all.

Friday the 26th was our last day in Mwamba and we got the whole group out for a picture.

Thank you for your many prayers for us.  Although by the end of the week we were all tired, we were still in good spirits as we headed down to Narok to take a day in Maasai Mara.

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Safari in Maasai Mara National Park

We spent the night in Narok after a day of travel from Mwamba. We departed early Sunday morning for a Safari in Masa Mara. We had excellent weather and our driver, Simon managed to find all kinds of wildlife in the park. A few of the highlights included two "firsts" for the team; a rhino and a leopard. There were several other surprises including baby giraffes, jackels and a hyena. Pastor Michael managed to "smell out" a couple of male lions as well. Overall, it was a wonderful time despite an especially bumpy ride in and out of the park.

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Lodwar API Pastor Conference Video

Alternate link to video: Here

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Wednesday August 24, 2016

We are in our second full day of teaching here in Mwamba at Pastor Dennis' church with 60+ pastors and church leaders, and more arrived today.  Roger and Dan returned to the U.S. last Saturday and so we are left with the infamous four: Pastor Tim, Ben, Rob and myself. Here is a rare photo of the photographer.

I was happy to see my friend, Pastor Benson Ntuntai from Kilgoris show up.  Benson actually showed up before those who lived right in Mwamba.

Our registration team of Frank and Maurice.

Ben manned the book table, taking over from Roger and Dan in Lodwar.

The weather here is 20 to 30 degrees colder than in Lodwar and it was time to break out the coats and blankets.

Since our rooms are too small, morning devotions are held in the court between our rooms. I had a lot of jokes about my blanket, but I was warm.  7 am is a little chilly.  The coffee helps.

This is Dennis Makutu, the host pastor of the conference.

Thank you all for your faithful remembrance of us in your prayers.  Everyone is healthy and energized by the ministry here.  We have three full days of teaching ahead of us and two days of travel. Please pray for the team and for all the pastors and leaders that have come.  Pray specifically that the word of God would be active and transforming in the hearts and minds of both the speakers and the hearers.

 

 

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Saturday August 20, 2016

It's early morning here in Lodwar and we have finished the pastor's conference and are preparing for the graduation this morning. We have five graduates this year and they are really excited about it.  We've had a wonderful week of teaching and learning and building relationships with our Kenyan brothers and sisters. Here are a few pictures from this week.

Pastor Tim

Ben Edwards

Roger Johnson

 

Roger Johnson

Pastor Dan

Firewood delivery

Prepping for lunch

Ben had a friendly visitor one evening. I think he emptied a whole can of pesticide on his guest.

The whole week was a wonderful time with these pastors and leaders and the power of the word of God was evident in their lives as one pastor's testimony bore witness: 'Now I have discovered myself I have been in my preaching without knowing the messages that I have been teaching. I realize that I had been teaching wrong doctrine and have cheated many people to the extent that spiritually they are dead.'  And then he asked the question: 'So what can I go and tell them and how can I do it so that I can take this good doctrine that I have been given and feed them. Where do I start?'

Thank you for all your prayers for this ministry and please continue to pray as we travel to Mwamba for the next conference.

 

 

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Monday afternoon we began registering pastors for the conference and handing out the books and other materials we brought for them

A big thank you to TGC and their Theological Famine Relief initiative for supplying all these books for the Kenyan pastors!

Our first session was Monday night where we opened the conference with the first chapter of 1st Timothy.  The next morning, Pastor Tim continued on with chapter two.

We are using one of the conference rooms at the Catholic High School in Lodwar for our sessions.

Preparing lunch - Nyama stew. (goat stew)

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Thursday 18, August 2016

(continued from Tuesday)

After the service and handing out the food, we visited the site where the new church building will be located, and we gathered around and prayed, dedicating this place to the proclamation of the gospel and the glory of God.

Pastor Thomas lives nearby and we visited his home.

Of course the trip was not complete without getting stuck in the sand. Fortunately there were plenty of people around to help. But Dan did most of the work. 

We eventually made our way back to Lodwar without more flat tires or other issues and gratefully rested at our hotel, St Teresa's Pastoral Centre.

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Trip Update From Ben Edwards

We arrived in Lodwar Kenya Saturday the 13th and have been preparing for this year’s Pastoral conference. This year’s study is titled Shepard to Shepard: An Exposition of 1st and 2nd Timothy and Titus.  I will be speaking on the Sanctity of Human Life with focus on God the Creator, the humanity of the unborn, our responsibility as Christians and sexual integrity.

Sunday we were blessed to be invited to a church, two hours outside Lodwar, and spending time with the congregation and the tribes people. I am always moved by all those I meet.

This year I am again traveling with Mike Sandberg, Pastor and Director of Pastoral Development, Rob Hostager, Pastor Tim Bourgeois. New to the team are Pastor Dan Mason and Roger Johnson.

The team meets each morning in prayer and devotion. This to me is a very special time and the best part of the day.

Next week will be at the Pastoral Conference in Mwamba with meetings in Eldoret with Youth for Christ and Jane Osoro to discuss crises pregnancy intervention, post abortion support and medical equipment needs.

Thank you again for your prayers and support.

God Bless,

Ben

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API Pastors Conferences 2016

Tuesday August 16, 2016

We are in Lodwar right now, beginning the 2nd day of our pastors conference.  The theme of this conference, and the one we will be doing next week in Mwamba, is Shepherd to Shepherd: An Exposition of 1st & 2nd Timothy and Titus. I intended to start this blog much sooner but our whirlwind schedule and sketchy internet connections doomed that from the start.  Surprisingly we are getting very good reception at the school where we are holding the conference.  So to bring you up to date -

l arrived 8 hours ahead of most of the rest of the team last Thursday after several airline delays.  Four members of the team arrived Friday morning at five: Rob Hostager, Roger Johnson, Dan Mason and Ben Edwards.  Ben and Rob linked up in Amsterdam with Roger and Dan who were traveling from Portland. The last member of the team, Tim Bourgeois, did not arrive until Saturday morning at 2:30 am, which was both a blessing and a curse. The blessing was the lack of traffic in Nairobi; the curse was the fact that I had to get up at 2 am to go pick him up.

Meanwhile, the rest of us spent Friday preparing for our trip; getting our communications equipment squared away, exchanging dollars for Kenyan schillings and buying souvenirs at the Masaai market. Of course the first order of business was to eat breakfast at one of our favorite spots - Java House.

Friday evening we had a great dinner at a place called 360 Degrees Pizza.

Saturday was our travel day to Lodwar.

Roger and Pastor George Lokwawi meet.

Pastor Shadrack is our API Associate who travels ahead of the team arranging all the logistics for our trip.  And he does a great job.

Saturday evening we had dinner with some of the pastors of Lodwar, and the Lodwar executive team of the Lodwar ministerial, and checked into St. Teresa's, a Catholic retreat center in Lodwar.

Sunday morning we bought maize, beans, rice, cooking oil, matches and salt, loaded up the vehicles and set off for a church in the interior called Nakepokan. It was only 52 km from Lodwar, toward the South Sudan border, but the condition of the road and the inevitable breakdowns, turns this into a 3 hour trip. The first flat came about 30 minutes out of Lodwar.

The second one came about an hour later.

Both breakdowns involved flat tires and thankfully we dealt with those fairly quickly. I'm just glad that we had two spares. There was a brief moment of panic when the vehicle slipped off the jack and headed off the road at one point however.

Ben tried to help with the air pump Roger bought to inflate the soccer balls he brought.

It was decided that the problem was the load on top was too much for the tires below. My personal thought was the problem had more to do with the condition of the tires than the weight.  But what do I know?  We unloaded the top and continued the rest of the trip without another flat.

After about three hours on the road, (and off the road) we finally made it to Nakepokan.

We met the church of Nakepokan at their place of worship under a large tree.

When they saw Roger, they immediately recognized that he deserved the chair of honor. The rest of us got a log to sit on.

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Pastor George Lokwawi planted this church and handed it over to Pastor Thomas.

Pastor Thomas Eipa

After the service, we handed out the food we brought to an appreciative church. Pastor Dan, Ben and Roger handled the duties.

 

 

 

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