Dear family and friends
Since our last trip to Zambia our ministry and family life have been a clamour of activity. 2013 is truly a new beginning for us. The year started with an unexpected opportunity to move house and all the wonderful disruptions of painting, plumbing and preparing for the move, as well as new God’s Vision God’s Mission classes in Zeerust and Pretoria.
We left for a teaching trip to Kabwe, Zambia at the beginning of November 2012, the day after Aimée completed her IGCSE Cambridge exams. This time the focus was on the practical courses which Marlien presents, namely Community Health Worker Training (CHWT) and Brewster’s Language Acquisition Made Practical (LAMP). It was the last two weeks of months of training for the twenty OM students, and although they were tired, they were also very excited. Soon after these courses started, they realised the value of having such practical tools on the mission field. The Community Health Worker Training enables the missionary to improve the health status of individuals, families and communities by recognising health problems and providing sound advice, informed health education and first aid. This creates a wonderful platform and open door to share the Good News of Jesus Christ. After completing the training, one of the students in the class shared her vision to start a Community Health ministry in Makululu which is a shanty-town of about 80 000 people just outside Kabwe with a very high incidence of HIV/AIDS, Malaria and TB. The three most vulnerable groups in Makululu which are especially in desperate need are children under 5, mothers and the elderly.
The LAMP course enables missionaries to learn any language in a social context by using this practical method. This course is based on the principle of bonding with the people you are called to. It is always rewarding for us to see the willingness and commitment of the students to leave country, home and loved ones in order to become a bi-cultural ‘belonger’ in a foreign country.
We also had the privilege of attending the graduation ceremony and dinner of the 2012 OM Missions class. We pray that as these trained missionaries depart to pursue their various ministries, God would use them to establish His kingdom on earth.
Going to Zambia is the highlight of the year for Aimée where she loves spending time with all her friends in Kabwe. She also ministered to the children of the community school in Makwati village where she taught them that each person received gifts from God for a particular purpose. She then encouraged them to discover and develop their gifts prayerfully. She also had the opportunity to join the worship team playing violin and piano in the local Grace Church in Kabwe, while I had the opportunity to preach in the church. A few days before leaving for South Africa we were invited to celebrate Thanksgiving with American missionaries working in Kabwe.
Towards the end of January I was invited to teach God’s Vision God’s Mission at a ministry in Zeerust. This was a wonderful class where the people were open and hungry for the word of God and willing to go out and share the grace of God with others. We are looking forward to working with this group later and teaching GVGM in Botswana.
In January I started a new weekly class in Pierre van Ryneveld, Pretoria which is going well. There will also be new classes starting in Faerie Glen in April. For about two weeks over the Easter weekend I have been invited by the pastors who attended GVGM last year to take a small team up to Malawi and present an Easter Conference. From 22 April until 10 May I will present a three week full time GVGM course at the Living Word Bible College in Brummeria, Pretoria.