Teleios Ministry

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tuesday-Wednesday: Mbeya Safari and Children's Home

We took it easy in the morning heading off to Mbeya. The trip is a unique one as we travel plateaus, through the Great Rift Valley, and into the mountains surrounding Mbeya. After fours, we arrived in Mbeya and visited Frank and Mpeli's parents. I was given a new name by their father in the Nikusa language, Anganile, meaning "the one loved by God". We secured our nights lodging. We visited with George and had dinner together. Our hotel had free internet. WOW! What a deal. We rose the next morning to enjoy a delicious breakfast prepared by Violet (George's wife). They have a beautiful home and Violet is a gracious hostess. We met George's mother who looks just like him. We left Mbeya and headed for Iringa. We enjoyed a delicious meal of rice pilau. At first, Suzanah was not interested but quickly decided to join the guys in this gas station delight. We arrived in Iringa by mid-afternoon a little behind schedule. We rested for a few minutes and then headed to play with the children at the DBL Children's Home. After an hour with them, we headed for Kidetete to see the new farm. Unfortunately, no pictures we arrived after dark. Mpeli and I walked the farm in by moonlight. The great news is that the farm has a spring on it--water year round. We did not know this--What a blessing from God! Neema and Yusta prepared an great meal for us. Suzanah met with Neema and Yusta on women's health and other issues facing women in Tanzania. They had a long meeting. Mpeli and I went over teams coming to Tanzania and his upcoming visit to the US. A short night's sleep means another Safari.

Do you remember the field of dreams in the previous months newsletter. Believe it or not the beans have already been harvested almost 90 lbs. The corn is growing and will produce a bumper crop.

I am left with the thought of the smiles of the children and those who serve them at DBL children's home. What a joy to surrounded by smiles and the happiness I always find here.

Monday:Safari to Iringa

Suzanah, Frank, Mpeli and I left early Monday morning and enjoyed quite a long time jamming (traffic jams are famous in Dar)in Dar. Afterward an hour we were on the open road. For some reason, the police kept wanting to talk to Frank and we were constantly pulling over for these visits. No charges just pleasant conversations about traffic. We enjoyed our usual stops in Chilize at the Kobil for Breakfast of soup and chapati, Morogoro for bananas, Top of the Ugundu Hills for corn, and then finally to Iringa. We visited the children at the DBL children's home. A great evening meal with Frank, Anne, Westley, and Embre. The safari was long but the end of the day was great. Another safari tomorrow traveling to Mbeya.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Saturday and Sunday: Tanzania Safari Begins

First, my scheduled arrival in Dar Es Salaam was Friday at 6:30 PM. My actual arrival at Frank Mwaisumbe's home in Dar was just a few minutes into Saturday morning.

I met most of the day with Frank and Mpeli Mwaisumbe, founders of Daily Bread Life Ministries, We caught up on what had happened in our families and lives since January. We met regarding future partnerships between Teleios Ministry and DBL Ministries. The main topic of our discussion was the Children’s Home and new farm. We made plans for future ministry groups coming this summer. Frank and Mpeli outlined their plan to develop more detailed plans for the children as they grow older. These life plans involve helping children to discover their opportunities and plan according to the their abilities. In the afternoon, we met Suzanah Raffield of Covenant Community Church, Elba, Alabama. Heavy rains caused difficult traffic in Dar es Salaam to become almost impossible traffic. Frank managed to work around the traffic jams to the Chicken Place. Teleios partners always have the opportunity to enjoy this “hot,” no, “really hot” grilled chicken. After a delicious meal we headed for Frank home.


What an exciting Sunday morning worshiping at the Riverside Community Church. Pastor Ephraim Mwamsasu and his wife, Prisca, warmly welcomed us to the church. The church was filled with people. When we arrived they came out of the open air sanctuary and greeted with joyful songs of thanksgiving to God at our coming. The joy of the worship celebration was truly a worship experience in itself. The praise team led in worship through a wide range of music from the very enthusiastic to emtionally charged, intense softness. Pastor Ephriam often joined the praise team and is an excellent worship leader. Suzanah brought greetings from her church and introduced herself to the church. Greetings were brought from Teleios partners around the world. Also greetings were brought from my family and church family. Hopefully you will have the opportunity to see the videos of the worship service. There were over 600 people present in worship with many new worshipers. Pastor Ephriam grew up as an orphan and lived on the streets. His life was transformed as a young man from a very "violent" life to one of joy and hope in Jesus Christ. Now, he and Prisca lead the Riverside church in reaching out in a neighbor filled with those he understands best. The church was filled with young people who left the streets to follow Jesus Christ.

Frank and Mpeli treated us to Sunday dinner at the Indian Ocean. The setting was beautiful and relaxing. Dar es Salaam was cool compared to past visits. After the meal we met Dr. Godbless, yes, his name is GodBless. He, Frank, Mpeli, and Suzanah met to discuss maternal health care in Tanzania. The meeting was arranged by Frank and Mpeli for Suzanah to better under the maternal issues facing Tanzania women. Godbless was an invaluable resource for better understanding the medical situation in Tanzania. He identified two critical issues: equipped medical facilities and trained staff for the facilities.

After the meeting with Dr.Godbless, Mpeli, and the doctor left us for a nights rest. Frank, Suzanah and I walked to a local restaurant specializing in BBQ fresh pork sausage and BBQ pork ribs. Someone had to eat the ribs and sausage. The pork was delicious. We walked back by the light of a beautiful sky and moon. Tomorrow the safari continues to Iringa.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Thursday: The Medical Crusade

Thursday was another amazing day. One pastor said, “This is not a medical clinic. This is a medical crusade.”

By the end of the day, four more people had accepted Jesus Christ. We finished on time for the first time and saw 278 patients. During the four days, 30 people accepted Jesus Christ. No one knows how many teeth Ryan pulled. He would not stop until all were seen. Over the course of the four days, almost 1,200 people were served.

This was a day of thanking God for the privilege of serving others in his name. Jesse, one of the translators, said, “It feels so good to serve others.”

The Grace Team and the pastors shared a common bond—a desire that none go away without being served, even though they all knew they could not meet everyone’s medical needs. Even on Thursday, as many were turned away as were served.

People arrived as early as 2 a.m. Some even slept at the clinic site to make sure they would be able to see the medical team. The Team found joy and comfort in knowing they had served so many in Jesus’ name. Even the people who were turned away expressed their gratitude for the Team coming. What a special time this was for all the partners involved…serving and doing what had not been done before in Sipili – offering a free medical clinic serving without favoritism or partiality.

In the end, the Sipili area pastors, Grace Medical Team, Fellowship of Baptist of Central Kenya, Outspan Hospital (Nyeri, Kenya), and Teleios Ministry came together in one great partnership in the Gospel. From the testimony of the community, Jesus Christ was lifted up and His name praised through His servants. The day ended with a group photo and thanksgivings to God.

By Wednesday, the staff of the Olivia Court Hotel in Sipili had grown accustom to our large group and did a good job of taking care of our food needs. In fact, the hotel did a good job of trying to meet all our needs. Actually, the food was well prepared and mighty tasty! One thing about our showers, however, was that they were not of the Laodicea type—never warm, but either hot or cold…when there was water coming out of them. Personally, I will miss my faucet showers—NOT!

We all traveled to the Thompson Falls Lodge for a celebration dinner on Thursday night. The night was spent in laughter, telling stories, joking with our new friends, and finally relaxing after five days of hard work.

Friday morning, we woke up early to hike to the falls. Thompson Falls was a beautiful setting for our last challenging adventure together as a Team. The Nyeri group left for home, the Grace Group left for Nakuru National Park, and the rest of us headed for Limuru/Nairobi/Ruaka.

Bernard Kabaru Mwangi continues to do an excellent job of leading the clinic and building a real team from many different places. Great job, well done, Bernard!

I left for the airport only to discover my flight was delayed from 5:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Hopefully, I will be able to keep you updated on the Tanzania portion of the trip. Thank you for your prayers over the past week. The effectiveness of the clinic was directly related to the prayers of God’s people.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Monday through Wednesday: 900 Served

Please excuse the shortness of the blogs. Time and internet connection allows only a short time for posting the blog. Thank you for your prayers.

On Monday, the clinic saw 250 people with four persons making decisions to follow Jesus Christ. This was a day of learning one another, the system, and getting use to translation. Some complications developed but were addressed. Overall this was a great starting day.

On Tuesday, what a change in the effectiveness and efficiency of the medical clinic. We began an hour and half earlier than Monday. What an unbelievable day of ministry. Over 300 people were helped by Ryan, Grechin, Chuck, Mark, Stephen, Donald, Stephen and Julie. The nurses for Outspan Hospital in Nyeri filled hundreds of prescriptions. A team of pastors and Floyd led in Evanglism. Mike served to coordinate the activities of the team. Bernard and Peter working with the local pastor developed a great system for the overall medical clinic. Peter, Jesse, Titus, Peter, Robert, and Joseph did an excellent job of translation. Sixteen people made professions of faith. After 11 hours of ministry the clinic finally closed—our longest day. Some of the people served by the clinic were the displaced Kenyan driven from their homes during the post-election violence. What a privilege to serve them in Jesus name!. Some had traveled 60 kilometers (37 miles) to come to the clinic. This was unbelievable.

On Wednesday, the medical clinic served 334 people and seven people made decisions for Christ. Each person who made a decision was counseled by local pastors and introduced to the pastor from his or her area. What a surprise that we were finished just after 5 PM. This was our shortest day but day of greatest service to the community. Even with all our joy we were faced with the reality that over 500 people had to be turned away. Each day the team has had to struggle with working to exhaustion and knowing hundreds were turned away. Please pray for them on the closing day. This will be a tough day

Sunday: Sipili

The team packed up the vans. The Grace team was joined by part of the Kenya medical team. We began our journey to Sipili. The journey went well and we enjoyed roast chicken at Thompson Falls Lodge for lunch. The roads had been repaired somewhat—Praise the Lord. Setup began as the team was joined by pastors from the Sipili area. Then, we were joined by the medical team from Nyeri. Tents raised, suitcases unpacked, medical stations set up, tables and chairs arranged, and meetings to go over the details of the medical clinic. Great to get started and to see everyone working together.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Saturday Koinonia and Grace

Bernard Mwangi and Robert met me at the airport. The trip was an easy on and it was good to see the plane full of passengers. We went to Bernard’s house for a great meal with Mary, Carol, Judy, Robert, and Bernard. Then, on to the Kentmere to see my good friends. After a restful night, Bernard, Jesse, and I went over future partnerships and Jesse’s new business. Also, we prepared for the Grace Team to arrive.

I cannot express my surprise at the newly completed Koinonia church on its own property. The last of January there were still grass and banana trees. Now the sanctuary, four classrooms, kitchen, storage room, a caretaker quarters, and toilets. We later went visit a potential site for future ministry opportunities. What a joy to see youth that we had worked with the past two years helping to prepare the church for worship on Sunday by washing the chairs and cleaning the church

Then, off to the Nairobi airport to get the Grace Team. They arrived with no problems. In typical Grace Team to Kenya tradition, they had a run through the airport to catch a flight. We enjoyed a real thumping dinner at the Kentmere before a night of rest.