‘After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”’ Revelation 7:9-10
We praise God that there will be people from every tribe and nation in heaven, praising him forever. We had 10 out of the 42 different tribes of Kenya represented in TransformD this year and we hope and trust we will see each of them in heaven!
We also praise God for the two new additions to our family! Jeremiah and Daniel, our twins, were born on 2 April. They are growing well and now do a lot of smiling and chatting! We have had struggles with eczema and reflux but they seem to be reducing now. We do appreciate your prayers for their health and safety.
We thank God for the successful completion of our third TransformD programme with a team double the size of the previous two (27 participants). We saw growth and change in each of them over the six months, particularly in confidence in discussing Scripture and even preaching from the front. Our graduation at the end of June was attended by over 200 guests!
The mission to Samburu went well despite challenges of space for sleeping and living in very close proximity, in addition to the other usual challenges faced each year. The team led the children’s camp (around 300 children) and youth camp (around 80) which gave them good experience to teach, be leaders and communicate the gospel. They also did outreach into local communities so it was great for all of them to engage with different cultures; this year we had three young men from Samburu in our programme. In a male-dominated culture it is exciting to influence these young men to be serious, committed Christians.
This year we introduced a new type of teaching, specifically supported by one of our partner churches. We had copies of ‘God’s Big Picture’, a book by Vaughn Roberts which the group read chapter by chapter. They had teaching on the topic, then read the chapter, then completed the bible study materials in small groups. We were particularly excited that one of the young men, Fredrick, from Samburu, requested a copy of the book to keep so that when he returned to Samburu he could teach it to other people. He found it enlightening to understand the Bible as one story.
Around 10 of TransformD are beginning university in September. Others will look for further training at colleges for things like hospitality or agriculture and some will look for jobs.
We hope that within the next couple of months we will have some permanent full-time staff to help Gerald, which will make continuity easier. Particularly running alumni events, keeping in contact and supporting the young people beyond the programme. Gerald will be thinking through how to do this well and planning for the future with these other staff members. Please pray for the necessary resources to this end. Then in December we will run another ‘Cross Camp’ for 40 young people at iServe premises. We also hope to be back in Northern Ireland during September for a few weeks.
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