Sunday, October 19, 2008

The congregation at Mariakani

Hello All,

Greetings from a sunny Sunday morning in Mombasa, Keyna. It is pre-church time at our hotel. Yesterday we met with some local pastors in the morning, then had a pastoral training seminar in the afternoon. Pastor Mayhew presented an overview of the Old Testament books, and I spoke on Jeremiah 31:31 ff., and the idea of Old Covenant (testament) vs. New Covenant (testament).
Pastor Mayhew presenting at Mombosa conference

We had some time between the conference and a church gathering, so we took a short drive down to a public ocean beach to take a break. The Indian Ocean, from the east Africa coast, is a beautiful sight. Local boys followed us around, begging for change so they could buy ice cream from the vendor. One of them, with one hand out, held the other behind his back with an ice cream cone in it. "Hapana!" -- NO!

At the Ocean, with trusted Driver and all-around helper, Charles Wamithi

We drove back east somewhat, gaining altitude, in order to reach the very friendly congregation at Mariakani. Pastor Simon, who was at the big Naibrobi pastoral conference, leads this group. About half the congregation showed up, it being a Saturday afternoon on a holiday weekend (Monday will be "Hero's Day," akin to our Presidents' Day). There were still 60-70 present. Russ Schmitt asked for a volunteer, and dressed a small boy up with the "whole armor of God," explaining the attributes we need to do successful battle with sin.

"Put on the full armor of God"

We have been eating whatever is put in front of us. Usually this is chicken or beef in a kind of gravy, with rice. Pastor N. & Russ are fond of "samosas," which are like egg rolls, except they are triangular and have a beef mixture in them. Also, the spices are different. Other than that, just like egg rolls.

Last night we spotted a "Pizza Inn" in Mombasa, and treated ourselves to some excellent slices.

[Later]...Today [Sunday] church was at 10 a.m., at Samburu Parish. This is the smaller of the two churches served by Pastor Simon Muriuki. It took about an hour to reach it -- fortunately, it was on our way back to Nairobi.
The Congregation at Sambruru
In each place we visit, it is a joy to see the recognition in the people's faces when they hear the Word of God's grace -- salvation by faith in Christ, apart from works. Our efforts to provide better training for pastors, as well as Bibles and catechisms for the members, is well worth the time, effort, and expense that is contributed by the CLC-USA.

After a day in Nairobi, we leave for rural Etago, and the AIDS orphan school. Email access may be infrequent from there. In Christ -- B. Naumann, N. Mayhew, and R. Schmitt.

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