Tuesday, September 10, 2013

a privilege and a challenge

Karibu! Welcome to the 2013 edition of Cherished Illusions...tracing and reflecting upon my recent journey back to Africa. Again this year, I was privileged to accompany a team from Christian Life Assembly in Camp Hill, PA to the village of Loborsoit, Tanzania:

...under the leadership of missions director Curt Harris:

Curt Harris
 ...and WorldServe International president and honorary Maasai elder, John Bongiorno http://www.worldserveintl.org/:

John Bongiorno
John Bongiorno
Over the years, these men have been inspired to serve the needs of this particular village in the remote African bush. The people of Loborsoit needed clean water. They needed medical care. They needed a school. Curt and John made a commitment to help. Their work has forged an enduring bond with the people of Loborsoit dating back to 2003. They drilled a well, built a clinic, and started a school.
This is my second trip with them. Why did I go back? Perhaps it was the despair and longing I recognized in a mother's eyes, or a child's timid smile, or an elder's crippled gait and knotted joints that drew me back. Perhaps it was simply the burden of work left unfinished, the yoke of suffering that drew me back. After all,
You Have Never Really Lived Until 

So, after months of preparation--organizing and packing, reorganizing and repacking--at exactly 2:45 AM on August 27th I hopped out of bed, eager to get started. Adventure was in the air.

"What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith
but does not have works?
If a brother or sister has nothing to wear and no food for the day
and one of you says to them,
"Go in peace, keep warm, and eat well,"
but you do not give them the necessities of the body,
what good is it?"
--James 2:14-16--

In my next post I'll tell you what it feels like to be a sardine.


  1. Our wonderful Doctor Jan. She not only took care of the Loborsoit people, but took care of me when I came down with some food related issue from the plane upon our arrival. I was in one of the best hands God has ever provided to his people. Jan follows God's words well.

    Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me-put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you(Phillippians 4:9).

    1. I have to admit that I was more than a little nervous about you, Audrey. I pictured myself hanging out with you in the hospital in Arusha while the rest of the team forged ahead. I felt every bump in the road with you. I breathed a deep sigh of relief as trouble subsided. And I really enjoyed getting to know you!

    2. No worries..you were not alone. But God always takes care of me, I have had many challenges in life that I hope no one has to ever go through and I am still here. Perhaps, it was a lesson for both of us...I admit having to depend on a total stranger in only my 2nd time out of the country was a little more than stressful. However, it all worked out...And we need to get together sometime. Keep up the Good Work! Blog is allsome. I am reading it backwards..lol