Tuesday, December 8, 2009

updates and corrections

I wanted to write and thank everyone for praying for us in our time of transition. We are all learning a lot and trying to adapt as quickly as we possibly can. I wanted to write and give you some brief updates and to clear up some things that I told many of you as we were speaking in churches.

First an update. The conflict has settled down in the Democratic Republic of Congo and as of now no new refugees are coming our way. This situation can change rapidly so continue to pray for peace in that area. The refugees really do not have a lot but are very grateful to be here. They also do not want to leave since they have no place to go. Our surgeon who is doing a lot of good work with the casualties told one man “You can go home if you want.” The man (who speaks a little English) replies “You go to my home first, and if it is good I come. I not go back first”.
Another update is that we have all but 5 or 6 of our boxes that we shipped on the container. A little is coming on each plane flight that comes into Impfondo (tues, thurs, sat). The kids have had a lot of fun opening the boxes and discovering toys (which should’ve been in every box apparently) and other things. Anna and I are also happy to get some of the stuff we’ve been waiting for.
Correcting some impressions. Number one: we don’t have to iron our clothes. I had told many of you because of the mango fly we would have to do that. One reason we do not is that the mangoes are not in season but the big reason is that we can also just let the clothes dry for over an hour then the larvae do not live. Of course getting our clothes dry here has been a challenge because of the humidity. We usually end up hanging our clothes up inside overnight to dry.
Number 2: our clothes are not being washed in the river. The lady that comes and does them uses an outdoor spigot that we have to do that.
Number 3: The town’s electricity doesn’t even work ½ the time. You can see which part of the town as electricity and who doesn’t sometimes a night. The other thing about that is that since we are on the hospital compound we are hooked into the generator (both solar and diesel) system. Therefore we have power for all the time except it usually runs out on Saturday or Sunday if no big surgeries were done over the weekend.
Number 4: Since we are hooked into the system on the hospital we are working on a 220v, 50htz system which doesn’t work with all of our electric equipment. We can use transformers to get it down to 110-120 volts but things with motors (like sewing machines, and kitchen aid mixers) are more limited use only.
Number 5: mail. It seems that the mail is running on average about 6wks to get here. We’ve gotten some very early birthday cards for the boys already. However, it is hard not to open a letter you’ve gotten so we didn’t make the kids wait. Again, packages are still very iffy as to whether or not they will make it.

I think that takes care of that. I am sure there are some other things that I did not think of that so I will come back to this at a later time.
This week pray on
Monday for the children and Anna as they start another school week which is getting more strenuous.
Tuesday for the patients at the hospital. Pray that we can aide in their physical and spiritual healing.
Wednesday Pray for the hospital staff (both expatriates and nationals) as we are always searching for more nurses and looking for ways to make sure we can pay everyone here.
Thursday pray for the hospital equipment. We need our diesel generator to work ( we are currently using a tractor to run a smaller generator). Pray specifically for Art and Jean-Pierre as they are involved in hospital maintenance .
Friday pray for Anna that she would have the energy to do the things to keep our house running, that she would have opportunity to speak Lingala and French to others as well.
Saturday pray for me to not get discouraged when children die (4 have died since I’ve been here) and that I would succeed in communication with others
Sunday pray for our family to be a family and that Anna and I would maintain a healthy relationship and that we would be good parents to our children.
Everyday praise God that He is faithful and will sustain us as we abide in Him.

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