Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Fall Festival

We had a Fall Festival! I thought you would enjoy a picture of Emily and I bobbing for apples with two new missionary kids in Cote d’Ivoire. Caleb and I tied for first with three apples each. Though I am sure Emily would have won if she hadn’t stopped to help Karis!

We had a ball toss, croquet, and a treasure hunt too!

Janaba, the wife of our night guard Saydou, made us Peanut sauce and rice for the meal and we made many deserts.

We really had a good time together and it was a good way to introduce a new missionary family to the fun of living in Abidjan.

Pictures provided by William Haun. http://www.haunsinafrica.com/

Baby Naming

Sunday the Hausa team went to a Baby Naming ceremony. We arrived too late for the food…but in enough time to visit with the family. It was a great time. The first stop was at “Fatiis” (Fah-tees) house. They got all dressed up in their “fete” (party) clothes and posed for a quick picture and then we where off to the house of the new baby.

Here they wait eight days to name the new child. (They see if it will live or not. So, they wait to get attached.) This compound is full of laughter and fun. We’ve been just once before and that is when they invited us to the party. The group was excited to see us. The men were gathered under a tent in the street and the women were seated outside the compound gate away from the men. Very normal.

We visited outside for a while and then when into the sauna-like room. It was incredibly hot in this small windowless room. The smallest baby ever was laid out on the bed with a Hausa knife pointed at her head, laid very close to her head. I’m sure it is something to keep the evil spirits away. She was a twin, but her brother didn’t make it.

They handed the small baby to me to hold and then demanded we pose for pictures.

We took the time to pray for the baby. (Yes, my eyes are open and palms out, this is seen as a more respectful way to pray in the culture here.)

Then I went to play with the other little children. A good time was had by all!

Pictures provided by William Haun. www.haunsinafrica.com

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

The Hausa

Sannu. Ina kwana? Hello. Is it a good morning?

Today, for the second time, I went to a little place I like to call Hausaland. The Hausa people come from Northern Nigeria and eastern Niger. But, there are over 100,000 of them living in Cote d’Ivoire.

A couple moved here in August and part of their job is to work with the Hausa people. Emily and I are honorary members of the Hausa team. I can barely say hello, Sannu.

Laura and I sat with the Hausa women in their dark bedroom (because the power was cut) and I’m sure they talked about life, kids, work…but, I don’t know because I don’t speak Hausa and they don’t speak English or French!

Later, we moved to a porch like area and watched the kids hit each other and roll around on the ground. Laura’s son, Noah, doesn’t know what to do with all the hitting Hausa kids.

After we sit with them for sometime and maybe Laura gets a chance to tell a story from the Bible, we go to look for her husband Greg. Greg find’s some Hausa men to practice his Hausa and to try to tell Bible stories. Today, he told the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000.

When we find him, it’s time to go down the muddy, trashy road for lunch.

Rice and Peanut sauce, my favorite African food. Enjoy it with me.

On our way back to the car, we stopped at a little stand to buy soap and sugar (don’t mix them!) and the man told me the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000! They are hearing and remembering.

Try to tell a story from the Bible this week. It’s easier than you think…(You get to say it in English!)

Tomorrow it’s off to the market to visit are wonderful market ladies.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


I am on strike. (Not really) FREE THE PEN!

If you can’t tell my strike slogan is FREE THE PEN! Chant it with me. FREE THE PEN! FREE THE PEN! FREE THE PEN!

I had a moment of mental block and started chatting with a friend from Mali, Lori. Lori is awesome and we pretty much get into some kind of trouble anytime we are together or on the same continent.

She came up with the slogan, creative genius that she is. If you listen hard enough you can hear her chanting FREE THE PEN in Mali too…

I think this got started because she wants me to come visit her in Mali and I can’t right now. So, we went on strike until such a day the pen is freed and I can go visit her!

See what semi-creative minds can do during a break. Just imagine what I could do during work hours!

Children's Material

Well, during work hours I (along with my beautiful co-worker, Laura) have created material for children (lessons and activities), West African recipes and put together websites for those and language resources that Emily has pulled together.

It was a very happy day when it was all completed and uploaded to the internet. A lot of time, over-time, weekends, late nights and computer time went into this project.

The lessons are about each country the IMB currently has personnel or an SBC church is currently or will soon have work among a people group. That is 11 West African countries. Each lesson contains an intro language activity, a missionary kid story, fact finding and prayer activities. The hope is that children will become just as involved in reaching West African people groups as their parents pray, give and go to West Africa as volunteers, partnering churches or engaging churches.

Maybe one day the kids who learned about West Africa through these lessons will come to West Africa to spread the Gospel!

To view and download these products go to www.gowestafrica.org/media. (click on Children's Materials, West Africa Recipes or Learning Lanuages)

My next big project is working on Lottie Moon Christmas Offering promotion for West Africa! It’s due at the end of the month. Wish me many more long hours at the office!