And they sang a new song: "You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased men for God from every tribe and language and people and nation." (Rev.5:9)
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Ryan #1 - Mbarara
Greetings from Mbarara, Uganda! The team here is just enjoying some down time with the local regional pastor, John Yawe, and wanted to give everyone at home an update on our team.
We've just finished our first conference in a place called Rushengo, a small village about 2 hours drive away from Mbarara. For those who don't know, Mbarara is one of the main towns in Uganda, surrounded by many smaller villages. Rushengo is one such village, inhabited mostly by people who live off the land. When we arrived, we were surprised to find that most of the audience was children and local villagers. We were expecting to run a pastors conference, so this was a bit of a change of plans. Also, we were excited to see another youth mission team from Mbarara also in the village... they were a great help in moer ways than one! The people here, including the youth mission team, have an amazing heart of servanthood. We began with messages about intimacy, core identity, and healing, but the conference really built up to the last two messages of the conference.
Pat Koh began the afternoon giving a great message on forgiveness. With an interpreter, you can never quite be sure if everyone fully understands the point you're trying to get across - the communication barrier is something we need to always be mindful of. However, it was clear by the altar call that the people really did understand the message of forgiveness - many people were able to forgive some pretty deep wounds. For example, one woman was able to forgive a person who killed one of her children... some deep healing took place!
The next session was really the highlight of the trip... here's a short writeup, not from us, but from one of the pastors at the conference.
From Pastor Moses Mukisa
Thursday was so hot in the iron-roofed church house in Rushango. The youth mission team saw it fit to divide the congregation into groups of men, women, youths, and children. This brought minsitry closer to the hurting flock.
The climax of the service was foot-washing that turned the service around. The atmosphere got charged with joy, praises and with worship. The distrusted hearts melted and a warm fellowship ensued; only to be interruped by the next part of the program that needed to be attended to.
Minds, outlooks, and hearts were permanently impacted.
Thank Jeus for the grace to obey and the strength to do.
This is something you really have to see to believe. We have plenty of amazing videos and stories to share when we get home! Thank you for all your prayers and intercession - as Life-Spring partners with churches in Uganda, we are seeing God bring healing to the nation.