Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Remembering Mary Clark

Mary Jane (Evoy) Clark
September 3, 1947 - August 13, 2016 

Erica and her mom, Mary

Mary at a tiny Baptist Church in the Dadaab Refugee Camp
Over the past ten years, we had the joy of Mary coming to Kenya and staying with us for the Canadian winter on three different occasions. Each time, it was wonderful to have Mary join us in our ministry. She braved long desert roads, crossed miles of rugged landscape and entered into the lives of people in refugee camps and urban slums.

With her nursing background, Mary contributed to community outreach projects and often found great pleasure helping with a local children's home. Mary often talked about her angels. Her home was filled with little angel statues and pictures reminding her of God's provision and care. We still have a little guardian angel in our car that she gave us early in our marriage -- a reminder that she kept us in her prayers as we travelled throughout the maritimes. 

Angels meant a lot to Mary, but in many ways God used her as an angel in the life of others as she shared the love and compassion of Christ.

 Mary visiting the David Sheldrick Wildlife Orphanage, Nairobi

In her visits to Africa, Mary enjoyed her encounters with nature. From walking in the verdant tea hills of Limuru, to wading in the Indian Ocean and driving the great plains, she found great delight in the birds and wildlife. But where ever we went, Mary always seemed to attract the unwanted attention of the monkeys. On many occasions we'd hear her let out a hoot as a cheeky little monkey would snatch her breakfast or interrupt her coffee break. 

Soon the monkey would dash away and Mary would treat us all to her laughter.

Sopa Lodge, Naivasha

Early this past Sunday morning, we drove to the town of Thika to join the African Christian Church and Schools for worship with heavy hearts. After a prolonged battle with health issues, Mary died of an infection in the Corner Brook hospital, Newfoundland. 

As we entered the town, we were startled to see a little angel walking toward us. A boy of perhaps ten years of age, met us. His bright eyes greeting us, as the wings of a giant eagle kite stretched out from behind him. 

Mary would have been delighted. 

Kamp Tumaini: 2016 Team Two

K A M P    T U M A I N I
Counsellors Wes, Patrick, and Canuck at Kamp Tumaini ACC&S Kimangaru

Kamp Tumaini Team Two
Joel, Daniel, Matthew, Sandra, Jennifer, Alysa, Kathleen, Rebecca, Cindy, Katherine (Scotty), Laura, 
Joanne, Catherine and Wesley

Last Thursday evening, August 11, the second Kamp Tumaini short term missions team arrived in Kenya for this year's camps. We travelled together into the cool tea hills of Limuru for two days of orientation and preparation for the camps. 

 Jennifer, Scotty and Alysa warming up by the hearth

August is winter for Kenya and in the high elevations of Limuru it can dip below ten degrees celsius. This may sound pretty mild for Canadians, but with no central heating or insulation in the homes it is pretty chilly. Everyone appreciated the hot water bottles and extra blankets provided by our friends at Brackenhurst.

Along with preparing for the camps, the team had time to get over jet lag and enjoy nature walks where they encountered monkeys and wonderful bird life.

The team participated in worship at the African Christian Church & Schools (ACC&S) in Thika on their first Sunday. They shared music, greetings, scripture reading and the message.

 Team leader Catherine Cole and Reverend Beth preaching 

 The Canadian team meeting for prayer with the ACC&S Church leaders

 Kamp Tumaini 2016: ACC&S Kimangaru, Embu
Phyllis and Cindy sharing a devotion with Guardians of Hope caregivers

On Monday, the team launched this year's third Kamp Tumaini with seventy children and caregivers from the ACC&S Guardians of Hope project in Embu. 

At the ACC&S camps, our colleagues Laura Muema and Phyllis Wambui are leading times of sharing and training with caregivers in each of the projects. Members of the Canadian team are also joining them for prayer and devotional times.

Meanwhile, the Canadian counsellors are leading the children through worship, speaking, small group times of sharing and prayer, crafts and loads of fun and games.

 Wes and Scotty having some fun with their pod (small group)

Catherine and Erica 

 Rebecca hanging out with her goofy campers!

Dan leading soccer drills with the campers 

Let the games begin!

Along with all the fun, Kamp Tumaini is really about building relationships of encouragement and care with the Guardians of Hope children. We are so thankful for the great group of Canadian volunteers who have made the step of faith to travel to Kenya and to give so generously of themselves. Each day we are seeing the impact of their love and concern as God's spirit works in each of our lives.

 Wes and Scotty playing games with their pod

Dan and Joanne leading circle time with their pod 

 Joel, Sandra and Rebecca with their Twiga pod

Jennifer and Matt having some fun with their campers 

Alysa and Kathleen 

Please join us in praying for the camps and for the Canadian volunteers as they travel throughout Kenya. The last three camps will be taking place over the next week and a half in the communities of Kaiani, Saika and Nakuru. We also pray for the local church and volunteers who are hosting the camps, and for the hundreds of children who are anticipating Kamp Tumaini.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Kamp Tumaini: Kamp New Life, Machakos

 Kamp Tumaini: New Life, Machakos

Today is the final day for this year's first Kamp Tumaini. The Brunswick Street STM is hosting the camp with the Africa Brotherhood Church Guardians of Hope project with 59 children and caregivers.

Each day the team gathers everyone for prayer, worship, reflection and lots of fun. Along with the children's program, our colleagues Pauline Kariuki and Caroline Stevens are leading training times for the caregivers on nutrition, hygiene and income generation. During these times, members of the team have also shared in times of devotions and prayer. 

The camps have got off to an amazing start. Here are just a few snap shots from the camp.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Kamp Tumaini 2016: The Brunswick Street Team

The Brunswick Street Team

Early this morning, we met the thirteen members of Brunswick Street Baptist Church's short term mission team. After a long haul from New Brunswick through Qatar to Kenya, everyone arrived well with all their baggage in hand. They were tired, but in great spirits!

Brackenhurst Conference Centre

We shared a great day of getting to know one another in Nairobi and in the beautiful tea hills of Tigoni where the team will stay for the next two nights before joining the Africa Brotherhood Church  (ABC) in Ukambani. 

Over these next two days, we will be preparing together for the camping program that the team will be leading with children and youth from the Guardians of Hope HIV and AIDs program of Canadian Baptist Ministries and the ABC. 

Erica leading the first orientation session with the team

Greg, James, Sam, Jerrad, Peter, Elizabeth, Dale
Rebecca, Sarah, Catherine, Hillary, Allison and Faith

Please join us in praying for the the team. We pray that they are able to get some rest tonight and that they stay in good health. As the next two weeks speed by, we pray that they each experience God's transforming work in their lives.