Sorry it has taken us too long to communicate with you. This has, indeed, been a busy and intense season -physically, mentally, and spirtually
The physical aspect of our work — the renovations and expansions for upcoming retreats and for the place we call “home” — has finally been concluded. Oh my! It was a stressful time! All the builders are gone and now we are in the process of reorganizing and preparing for 3 retreats between now and the time we return to the States for fundraising and reconnecting at the end of August. Though everything looks so nice and we are enjoying its benefits, the destruction and rebuilding process has taken its toll! Praise God, it is now in “past tense!“
The main purpose for renovations has been to create an infrastructure which will continue its usefulness many years into the future. The four tukalus which house church leaders and others for retreats were more temporary in nature (with grass-thatched roofs which leaked and “rained down” bugs and dust). The roofs have now been raised and vented for coolness and metal sheets have replaced the grass. Larger windows were added for airflow. The outsides have been updated to have the characteristic “RAU” appearance with red metal roofs and decorative stone around the outside. Also, the tukalus have now been equipped with solar power so that they will have lights and electricity for charging phones and such. A new and improved pit latrine with drainage has been added.
Our room and one of the guest rooms have been expanded to make them more comfortable for the long haul…we were a bit cramped in ours which served as a bedroom, office and living space. In all these expansions we have been looking at sustainability for future growth and continuation of the ministry, especially as others will be called to work alongside us or receive “the baton” of ministry.
The other guestroom was finished – just in the nick of time – for Preston and Laurel Sink’s visit. Preston and Laurel have become dear friends and partners in our ministry here in the West Nile/Ma’di region. Their presence and company cheers and encourages us and they are always eager to bring along ministry items. They are always ready for “whatever” we plan!
Preston and Laurel Sink from Florida
While they were here we enjoyed a two-day conference at Aya Baptist Church, organized by Pastor Ojji Tobious. Preston, Laurel, Zorah, Samuel and I all shared from the scriptures. (Jacob stayed behind to oversee the building projects.) There was a lot of worship and dancing. We are encouraged by the steadfastness of these believers, some of whom walked many, many miles to get to the retreat/conference held at Aya Baptist Church. Thank you, Pastor Tobious, for your tireless efforts to strengthen the churches in your area and under your care!
During the week, while Preston and Laurel were here, we took bodas (motorcycle taxis) and went around to local schools distributing soccer balls which had been donated by friends of the Sinks. The schools were especially happy to see the balls as soccer (football) season approaches.
On the last day of the Sink’s visit, we went to Kuru and met with around 100 men, many of whom were Imams and Sheikhs. Emma, our Ag Extension Officer, gave some teaching on soy bean production and included a manual in the literature they received. There has never been a time when the Agricultural information has not been received with extreme enthusiasm and gratefulness, wherever it is taught.
These meetings are an opportunity not only to give people empowering information but also to express love in action. We always take the opportunity to hand out reading glasses to all who have need. Also, at the time of our visit, the Yumbe area had been experiencing some drought. As a show of love for the people of Kuru, also God’s image-bearers, we brought along 200 kgs of soy beans which were grown on RAU land to be distributed to those who had signed up for the Ag in-service. Half way through the day, the Lord graciously caused a heavy rain to fall. Since then, rain has been falling more regularly in the area.
Last Friday, we hosted 100 or so farmers through the Moyo District Farmers’ Association here at RAU’s demonstration plot. It was a full and busy day. Jacob shared some spiritual words of encouragement. Emma shared a lot of information with them and then took them by groups around to the various crops for hands-on instruction, especially in soy bean production. They all were keenly interested and asked many questions and took notes. I added a little to the day by giving a demonstration on identifying the readiness of watermelon for harvest. We had several watermelon which were cut up and then distributed to each farmer to taste. Many had never tasted watermelon before. They were scrambling to get some seeds when it was over. Several of them bought a watermelon for a greatly reduced price just so they could have more seeds to plant.
RAU, through its Ag Extension Program and the expertise and winsomeness of Apiku Emmanuel (Emma), is having an encouragingly good impact on the community by way of inspiring them and providing timely information on crop production and livestock management. The radio Ag call-in show, which Jacob was inspired to start, has been one of the best venues for helping the greatest number of people possible. For this coming Friday’s radio show, Emma will interrupt his normal plan of crop production to focus on livestock management, inviting some visiting guests with Veterinarians Without Borders to join him so that their expertise can benefit the community as well. We are so grateful for this door of opportunity which has opened up so that wherever the radio program can be heard (and it is a very large area, indeed) people are receiving a high level of Ag Extension service free of charge to them. Many see this service as being a way out of their poverty and a way of development for the community.
Now that the renovations have finished and we prepare for some specific ministry events we ask you, our beloved supporters, to pray, prioritize and give towards the operational expenses of this ministry. (Recent activities and ministry have nearly depleted our funds.) Everything we have accomplished is through your generosity and partnership. Everything we hope to continue to do is through the same means. Please keep us on your “ministry radar” so that what has been started can also be completed! Thanks so very much!
Please be in prayer for the following concerns:
- a brother in a nearby area who came close to being beaten/killed because of his association with Jacob
- spiritual, physical and emotional protection and encouragement as Jacob and I and those working with us experience the unpleasant brunt of an attempt to discredit and bring us down personally and as an NGO by someone much akin to Sanballat in the book of Nehemiah (chapter 4), and Alexander, the Coppersmith in the book of 2 Timothy (4:14)
- upcoming retreats (2) and teaching ministry of Ron Zeiner who will be here for about 3 weeks during the month of July
- upcoming ministry in August of Delmar Hager and his team for a time of intense teaching (Delmar is our awesome brother who has provided the many Kindles which have been loaded with wonderful books and then distributed to local church leaders)
- a young 17 year old boy (Walter) who developed heart valve disease after rheumatic fever and who is in desperate need of open heart surgery for valve replacement. Such a surgery is not only not available in Uganda, but it is well outside the affordability of the parents. Without surgery (and the doctors have suggested that the heart will suffer further damage if repair is not done by September) this young boy will not see many years. The family has already lost their oldest child to a tragic death. Their son’s situation is sorrow upon sorrow. The boy would be taken to India (I have been communicating with a representative from the hospital there and I have the medical records to verify this as a legitimate case) for surgery and recovery. With the help of a subsidy, the total cost of travel, room and board, surgery and recovery is $12,000. This amount is outside the scope of RAU’s budget and plans, but the Lord has touched our hearts to ask for help with this situation. We would like to receive the full amount by August 7th so that we can get the money to the parents before we leave for our USA visit. We are asking those of you to give who would be able to do so without diminishing your support of our regular ministries. Donations could be made through PayPal on our website: https://reachingafricasunreached.org/donations/ or by writing a check to RAU (with a notation for Walter) and mailing it to Lifegate Missions, 395 Lifegate Lane, Seguin, TX, 78155. All gifts are tax deductible.
Love in Christ,
Carol (and Jacob) Lee
For those who have asked, small packages and letters may safely be sent to:
Jacob & Carol Lee, PO. 55, Moyo Uganda, East Africa
The greatest evil is having the gospel and not doing everything within our power to get it to those who do not have it. (Jacob Lee)
Tax deductible charitable donations may be made via PayPal. PayPal also has a way to make reoccurring monthly gifts. To do so please click their link below. PayPal deducts a small amount from each gift as a processing fee. All gifts given through PayPal are now tax deductible as Reaching Africa’s Unreached has 501 c3 tax exempt status as a charitable organization. If you wish to write a check you may write it out to R.A.U. and mail it to Lifegate Missions, 395 Lifegate Ln., Seguin Texas 78155.