It's been a busy fifteen days. After several flights that took me from St. Louis to Atlanta to Amsterdam to Tanzania, I arrived at Kilimanjaro International Airport at 9:50 PM. After clearing through immigration and customs (with two suitcases full of donated books for the seminary that they wanted me to pay import taxes on...but I talked them out of it!) I was met by Pastor Jeremiah Issangya (President of the CLC-TZ) very late that night. We made the one hour trip from the airport to Arusha.
The next day it was back to the airport for an afternoon flight to Mwanza to meet with a small group of independent pastors who have been in correspondence with leaders of the CLC-TZ for the past five years. We spent three full days in Mwanza discussing the work and doctrinal position of the CLC and also conducting pastoral training seminars for three pastors and Bible studies with the members of three congregations.
We returned back to Arusha for two days of meetings with the those who will be teaching seminary classes in the very near future. These meetings were to finalize plans, that have been in the making for the past three years, for the start of classes in about a month at the newly established Wartburg Lutheran Theological Seminary of the CLC-TZ. These were productive days as much was accomplished and final plans for class schedules, teaching assignments, student transportation, room and board, etc. was finalized. Classes will begin with eight students on February 25th!
|Teachers and Text Books for the First Semester of Classes|
|CLC-TZ Congregation in Mbuyuni|
|Seminary Student (Robert) from Mbyuni|
|Adonai Destitute Center for Children|
|Director of the Adonai Destitute Children's Home|
Today is Wednesday, 23 JAN 2019 and I'm spending the morning getting packed up and ready for my evening flight to Lusaka, Zambia. This afternoon I'll meet one last time with Pastor Jeremiah before I take a 2:00 pm shuttle from Arusha to the airport for my 6:00 pm flight. I will fly from Kilimanjaro airport to Lusaka, Zambia with a long layover in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. My flight will arrive in the early morning hours on Thursday. If all goes well getting through immigration and customs I should be at my hostel and asleep by 4:00 AM. Hopefully I'll get a few hours of sleep at my hostel before Pastor Ibrahim arrives to discuss the details of my two week schedule in Zambia.
While in Zambia I will conduct pastoral training seminars in Lusaka, Livingstone, and Kitwe. While in Kitwe I will also meet with Pastor Yumba from D.R. Congo. He will travel over the border into Zambia since I have been unable to get a visa to visit the D.R.C. for the past couple of years. This visit with Yumba has been in doubt for the past few weeks while the D.R.C. has struggled through the first open election in the country since the achieved independence in 1960. The government had denied visas to all outside visitors during the election and since the election results were announced in early January all internet access has been cut. Just yesterday internet access was restored and I am back in communication with Pastor Yumba and our scheduled visit in Kitwe has been confirmed. The election results in D.R.C. are still being contested and there is a lot of uncertainty there right now. Please keep this nation in your prayers as they struggle for peace and prosperity after years and years of poor dictatorial leadership.
Your prayers are always requested and much appreciated.