What a week…

Jambo from your Cornerstone Kenya Team.

This week has been full of time spent with the kids; big and small.  We took 2 bus loads of teen agers to a National Park called Hells Gate.  It has a natural hot spring, picnic areas and a hiking trail.  A Park Ranger took the group on a 2 mile hike through the wilderness that the kids thoroughly enjoyed…as did Lydia and Mama Lisa!  We went to a lake that we thought we were going to be able to let the kids swim in, but was told that none of the lakes near were safe, as there are hippos and crocodiles in them!!  I’ll pass.  We did take plenty of other outdoor activity toys for them, like Frisbee’s and soccer balls, and the kids had a great time.  They also enjoyed the hotdogs, sodas, watermelon and cookies we gave them as well.  For some, it was the first time they had ever had a hotdog.

The rest of the week has been spent on work projects for the home.  We finished removing the scaffolding from the boys dorm and getting it ready for the next phase.  The scaffolding here is made of tree trunks and nails; nothing like the modern stuff we have in the US.  It was a tedious process and a lot of hard work, but we worked as a team and got it done for Mama Zipporah.  We also took down their old basketball back-boards, constructed new, painted and set them up.  Again, not like the states.  These back-boards were just odd shaped in size, and not the same on both ends.  Our guys had to measure them, cut the wood and get it to fit into the odd shaped frames.  After 3 coats of oil paint, we were able to hang them and re-hang the hoops.  Another job well done and a team effort.  Our men put up two doors in the main building too.  You guessed it, not conventional sizes and had to be cut to fit!

A Pastor’s conference was held on Friday and Saturday, lead by Pastor Linn and Pastor Jojo.  Over 250 Pastors from around Kenya came to share the word, learn from each other and how they can grow their churches.  Cornerstone team members participated in various activities preparing for the conference and some team members spoke to the group as well.  It has been deemed a very successful conference and well attended.

These last hours we have here are bittersweet.  As we are looking forward to coming home to our families in Arizona, we are also sad to leave our new family here in Huruma.  We have been blessed in many ways here, and as stated before, I believe we have learned as much and have been emotionally effected as much as the children here.  Several of the children have given us letters of gratitude and love.  They enjoy writing and receiving letters.  I encourage you to write to your sponsored child as much as possible if you have one.  If you don’t have one yet, you can speak to the Cornerstone Office on how you can participate and be a part of these wonderful children’s lives.

We are heading out to spend our last hours here with the children and say our goodbyes.  It’s been a life changing trip and one I hope to make again.

Lions, Hippos & Cheetahs…OH MY!!!

Jambo from your Cornerstone Kenya Missions Team.

We arrived back from safari yesterday evening to a large rain storm, so pardon the delay in blog posts.  We were able to capture what I believe to be one of God’s greatest pictures of art; the beautiful landscape is the back-drop to some the most exquisite animals on earth.  We were able to experience a cheetah hunt a Thompson Gazel.  The adrenaline of the hunt came to life as it captured it’s prey and then took it to a private place to partake.  It was almost sad, yet we all realized that every creature has a purpose; God’s purpose.  As ‘The Lion King’ movie says; it’s the circle of life.  We were also able to observe the likeness of the animals, yet how every stripe of the zebra was different from the next zebra and that every spot on the cheetah was unique to each cat.  God knows the numbers of hairs on each of His children’s heads and every person is unique; as is every animal in His kingdom.

This morning we had a spirit filled church service led by our very own Pastor Linn, or as they call him here:  Papa Linn.  He taught the kids that “we are better together” from Ecclesiastes 4:9-12.  Once again, he was amazing, had the kids very involved in the service and showed them how much God loves them.  The team finds it’s greatest rewards for us AND the kids when we are able to share in God’s word.  They pray for us as much as we pray for them and they are reminded often that there is a church in Chandler, Arizona that loves them and prays for them.  Thank you for sharing in that and continuing your prayers and support of the children of Huruma and the mission team representing our great church family.

VBS Success

Jambo (Hello) from your Cornerstone Kenya Team.  God is moving with the team and the children of Huruma.  Vacation Bible School for approximately 100 children was a HUGE successs.  Jody and Jana lead the Cornerstone team in a farm themed VBS filled with crafts for eating, skits, games, crafts for the children to keep, music and lots of laughter.  They learned the Fruits of the Spirit by reciting the verse and motions to remember it all.  They would march into every activity singing “I am marching in the land of God”.  The children were having fun competing in their march, in games and their team colors in sports.

After VBS, the team was taken on a tour of the dormitories and the class rooms.  We learned that the children sleep in multiples in the beds, with the little ones sometimes sleeping 3 or 4 to a bed.  They are happy to be together though, and here at Huruma, where they know they are safe, well cared for and loved.  Mama Zipporah and her staff work tirelessly to be sure the kids are shown God’s love at all times.  Mama is up before the sun and rests long after it sets.

Every day starts and ends with song and dance rejoicing in the gifts and blessings that God gives them.  This author has learned more from them than they are probably learning from me…that I NEED to start and end each day being thankful for all my blessings, great and small.  What may be small to me would be HUGE blessings to each of these kids here.

Thank you for your continued support and prayers.  We are truly blessed to be your team representing the great people of Cornerstone.  Peace and blessings.

We have arrived!

Greetings from your Cornerstone Kenya Missions Team.  We had successful travels, yet it was LONG travels to get here.  We left Phoenix at 2:15pm on Friday, went to Dallas then to London.  We had a short time to tour London and after many adventures on the “tube” (the subway train) to and from the city, we made our way back to the airport to board for another overnight flight.  We made it to Huruma on Sunday morning where we were greeted by all the wonderful children who were as excited to see us as we were them.  They know that the team is here to share Jesus’s love and compassion and they are ready to gobble it up.  We threw our bags in our room and prepared for church services.  They have a very energized service of approximately and hour of song & dance before Pastor JoJo gives the message.  He honored Pastor Linn and “Mama Lisa” several times during the sermon while always keeping God the focus.  The team was introduced and the children have already memorized our names.  We toured the campus with the children and then went to town.  The rules of the road are, there are no rules!!  Upon returning to campus, we started the preparation for our VBS and other projects we will perform this week.  We are looking forward to God’s movement this week in the team, the kids and the staff here at Huruma.  Please pray with us as the entire  campus knows we are here as a team, with a loving, praying team back at Cornerstone supporting us all.