The evangelism portion of our trip has been going well and as the team members learn more and more how to evangelize effectively and we are seeing better response. The first day up on the mountain, the team shared a presentation at a secondary school. During the altar cal,l more than 50 came forward to accept Christ. Thursday morning the team did their first door-to-door evangelism. Each group came back with gifts of fruit and vegetables for the team in appreciation for what they were doing. It impacted the team to see how little they have as they just live off the land and yet they are still willing to welcome the team into their home and offer them a gift.
In the afternoon they did another presentation at another secondary school. Each evening we have shown various films in Swahili at the church. Over one-hundred people would fill the church and even a few more stood outside peeking in to watch the film.
Friday the team did one last presentation of the Gospel to a primary school up the hill. Shortly after their backpacks were loaded up and they were on their way to another church across a large valley and up another couple of slopes. It was a difficult hike with incredibly steep walking trails both down and up. Again some thought they couldn’t make it, but their teammates really supported and encouraged them and they all made it through another tough hike, though this one was just two hours.
As soon as we arrived a crowd began to form, curious of our every move. Passersby would stop for a time to watch and children would stay for hours to watch everything from laundry time to library reading. We can never forget we are on a mountain. The water is very cold and the hills are very steep all around us. Even walking from the tent site to the church is quite a hill. We were happy to get our laundry done before the rains came overnight into the morning, now we are praying for lots of sun to get our clothes dry for church tomorrow. With all the rain the past few days, it has been very muddy and difficult to keep clothes clean, much less wash them with any hope of getting them dry.
This afternoon we were invited to share some songs in a wedding ceremony and now they are enjoying themselves at the reception. Tomorrow we will divide up into two groups to be able to do presentations in two churches. Pray for Travis as this is the first time he has been asked to preach the message. Sunday night we plan to show the Jesus Film as its our last night up on the mountain before we head back down towards the Teen Missions base.
Thank you so much for praying for our team this summer. We have been blessed so much and only hope to be such a blessing to the people here in Tanzania. Everyone is doing well and we have really enjoyed having each and every one of your kids on our team.
A few more bits from the team members:
Sierra: I still can’t believe how incredible and huge Kilimanjaro is! We have a great team and have definitely accomplished a lot during our time here. The African church experience is so much different than our churches in North America. The Africans always seem to clap three times after the pastor said something. And their singing! Wow! They also make this noise with their mouth that is so loud, it’s their way of whistling if they enjoyed something. They dress in bright clothing. I wish I could better describe my experience. I’m loving Africa and being on this team!
Audrey: The Lord has blessed us with safety and protection. He has been keeping us safe in a place where we are surrounded by people and elements we don’t know or recognize and it has been so incredible to see the joy and peace which still flows through our team. I am honestly very proud to say that I am a member of this team. The students and leaders are growing in Christ and it has been so cool to see their influence around me. I am so blessed by the leaders and their work and dedication to us crazy teenagers. They love God and are eager to serve the Lord and help us serve Him.
Christa: God has been teaching me that He is everything. He is everything I need. My own wants don’t mean much, and won’t last, but God’s way will last forever. Jesus is good.
Naomi: I am learning to have faith that God will take care of me. He will be with us in everything we do and His love never fails. Something I love here in Tanzania is the mountain and the scenery. Everything is so beautiful. I also love going to town, meeting the people and seeing all their beautiful smiles. I don’t like walking 2km every morning to get water. It also makes me sad seeing all the poverty here. It is such a huge awareness that we all normally look past at home! I am so blessed to be here!