Friday, June 19, 2009

Friday's Update from Zambia

I was excited to get another update from Pastor Jeff Eckart about how things are going for the team in Zambia and am happy to share that with you as well!

Jeff writes:
We've been out of the city of Choma (the place we've been staying, where World Hope HQ is) in the village of Jembo for the last 2 days. The village is where our KCC sponsored orphan trust is. We stayed there the last 2 nights at the home of American missionaries who run the Bible college there and just returned back to Choma about an hour ago.

We had lunch at the village and had the opportunity to eat goat intestines. (I was the only brave soul)

In the afternoon we visited several families with "patients" through WH who are HIV+. One that particularly impacted all of us was a 3 year old girl named Fanitee who lives with her grandparents. Her father abandoned her and her mother died of AIDS. The family lives in a place so remote it is a 5k walk just to get water. We are all changed deeply through these experiences.

Yesterday we were able to participate in another Hope Fest assembly at Jembo High School. There were 400-500 students there and the celebration was focused on sexual purity and the benefits of Reach 4 Life being in the school. We were able to worship together and perform a couple songs as well as meet many many students.

Our American hosts who are based here in Choma and have been with us for our entire trip let us know last night that we were the hardest working group they had ever worked with. They said we have such servants hearts and have been very thoroughly culturally prepared and have behaved very properly in all the situations we have been in.

The Zambians have been so welcoming to us and singing and dancing follows us wherever we go.

Tomorrow we travel to Livingstone and see Victoria Falls, stay the night there, do a game drive (mini safari) on Sunday morning and then board the plane back to the States Sunday afternoon. This may be the last update as I'm not sure I'll have internet access until we land back home.

Everyone is doing very well and our team has bonded and grown like crazy while we are here. The trip has been filled flexibility and changes but it has been very smooth and uneventful as far as anything not going according to plan. Everything has been going very well. We appreciate your prayers!

Jeff & team

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