While we were at the orphanage/school, a young 3-year-old girl, Emily, was walking with us. She kept jumping in the air to high five us. Then she saw some other people and started yelling in her language. Billy translated: These are muzungus (white-skin people) and they are MY muzungus! We then saw the cutest little boy - perhaps 2 years old - and she yelled at him that the muzungus were going to eat him. He started backing away! She was a funny mess!
Back-tracking: At the student Christian Fellowship a young man read Eph. 5:15 - See that you walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise. His interpretation: All of the children who walk along the roads, which are numberless, should be very, very careful and watch because someone could grab them. Child sacrifice by witchdoctors is on the rise in Uganda. As Americans, we would't have thought of that interpretation. So sad and scary that any young person has to even give child sacrifice a thought.
Did you know that if you let cows, chickens, and goats wander the streets they will return home in the evening? Here that is true. I don't know how, but it happens!
We went to the clinic/hospital Saturday, in which we put a library this year. Seriously, it is not possible to describe ... two adults sharing a twin bed; the beds shoved almost together; families sitting at the foot of the bed on the cement floors. So much suffering all contained in one long room. In a seperate room were several people, with a couple kids. I gave the children a stuffed animal each, which the Illinois ladies had brought. The young man on the table with a tube in his arm said hello. I ask him if he had malaria. He replied that he had AIDS. An older lady was lying on a little bed with the door open and people wandering through. Her son said she had breast cancer. I looked at our youngest volunteer, Leigh Ann, a college student; she was shedding endless tears.
How blessed we are, and we don't even realize it. That said - their library looks absolutely beautiful. Libraries of Love provided funding for shelves and shipped the books to the hospital. Dr. Matono said people that saw it were amazed that a place so far out in the bush would have such books.
On Saturday, we were able to spend the day with Mercy, who Melissa and Cody are going to adopt. She had a bit of a cough and wasn't feeling so good. She is precious. When the caregiver started to leave - I followed the sound of Mercy to catch up with Anne. I asked to see her home, so I would know where Mercy lives for now. Mercy lives in a small, round, mud/wattle thatched roof hut. She sleeps in a small wooden bed next to Anne and her husband's. They have three sons. The family loves Mercy, but realizes she needs to go to her American family. Anne started potty training Mercy at 3 months. She is now potty trained, except sometimes with an accident at night. Cheers for Mercy! It must be hard to learn to walk in the bush; there aren't things to pull up on to stand. Anne's son's names all start with E - including Elvis :) They're cute - 12, 8, and 6. I can't wait to have Mercy at home in Kansas!
This morning we attended Pearl Haven - where Wilber pastors. That also is indescribable. I think I shed a year's tears. God's presence is so real in that church. It seems that He changes my life every year through the services at Pearl Haven. I remember clearly the night that He spoke to my heart and I knew that I would return to Uganda.
As I was praying this morning, I remembered so many of you who have supported our work these past six years - your faces and names were flashing past and I spent time thanking God for you. Without people donating books, time, and funding - the libraries would't be possible. With a full heart, please accept my thanks and love. Together we are making a huge difference in thousands and thousands of young people's lives. God has provided exactly who and what we have needed over the years. 19 libraries later, He is still doing exactly that. Again, thank you!
Special love sent across the ocean to my three beautiful daughters - Kim, Donita, and Lindy. I am so glad I'm their mom! A hug sent your way.