Church Leaders, Farmers, and Clean Water

RAU hosted 688 farmers over four days

Carol and I want you to rejoice with us in the work that your partnership of prayer, financial gifts, love and eternal perspective are effecting and enabling across the ocean!  These newsletters are a way for you to “come and see” even though you may not be able to travel the distance.

We are looking forward to Module Two of our church leadership trainings in the RAU Hall of Tyrannus next week. In our last newsletter we shared about Module One. Module Two is Good Soil’sThe Roots of Faith Old TestamentGood Soil is a branch of ABWE. “The Roots of Faith – Old Testament course unfolds the story of a perfect world that became cursed by sin and the giving of promises regarding a Jewish King who would become the Savior of the world. Each student will receive a  200 page workbook which includes four pages for each of the 50 event-lessons. Each of the 50 Bible event-lessons includes: a Focus page, a two-page lesson spread, and a narrative summary of the event-lesson. Workbooks include a divider tab for each of the 15 sections. Pages are beautifully and colorfully illustrated.” Carol and I received training this last October from Good Soil. It was a blessed and encouraging time. RAU’s Module Two  Roots of Faith :OT will run from February 21st-26th. After completion, each student will be certified to teach it. RAU’s push remains 2 Timothy 2:2 and we will encourage church leaders in attendance to immediately begin teaching what they have learned. RAU is grateful for our partnership with ABWE. An added joy is that missionary friends, Greg and Kilby Helms,  working in and around Arua, will be spending the week with us, too.

This is the ABWE teaching team:

  • David Drullinger: After David’s retirement from Cedarville University he joined ABWE and moved to South Africa helping with theological training. He was recently appointed the Regional Director of South Africa.
  • Dan Cook: Dan is an ABWE missionary in Brazil. He is involved in leadership training, church planting and is the regional director of Good Soil in Brazil
  • Randy Southwell: Randy is the ABWE Overseas Director of Good Soil Evangelism & Discipleship Ministries. ABWE headquarters are in New Cumberland Pennsylvania which is near Harrisburg  Pennsylvania.
  • Caleb Mitchell: Caleb is an ABWE missionary here in Uganda based in Jinja. He is involved in discipleship and leadership training. Caleb is ABWE’s East Africa Regional Director 

Please pray for this pastor/church leadership retreat February 21st -26th. Thank you!

We had four full days ( Feb. 2, 3, 7 & 9) of agricultural training here at RAU’s demo farm and box gardens.  World Vision brought farmers from the nearby refugee settlements/& host communities. Along with the World Vision team, ZOA (a Danish NGO) and the OPM (Office of the Prime Minister) were represented. In the four days, we interacted with 688  farmers. Two farmers came as representatives of each of 334 Farmer’s Groups. We were told by World Vision that each group has 27-30 members. This means that, potentially, 9,018 farmers will be exposed to new farming practices and “Farming as a Business” principles, if the participants return to their homes and practice our motto of 2 Timothy 2:2 (Teaching faithful people who, in turn, teach others to teach others). ​

All the participants were divided into 3 groups and each group rotated between 3 stations each day (On two days we had separate groups of farmers in the mornings and afternoons): Stations:1. Box Gardens 2. Drip Irrigation 3. Mango and Land management. Odendi Zakeo handled the Box Gardens, Paul George, the Drip irrigation, and I handled Mango and Land management. There was no way, with this large group , to go into great depth on every aspect of any of the areas, but they were definitely exposed to some great information and ideas, especially being inspired with Farming as a Business. One of the wonderful things is that we found a company here in Uganda which sells drip irrigation kits similar to the Chapin kits we have here that were donated by M.A.R.S. ( Missionary Agricultural Resource Services), so we were able to give them the contact information to get their own. Carol and I are so grateful for the many years M.A.R.S. has supported and stood with RAU in its agricultural ministry.  That was always one of the questions the farmers would ask when they saw how well the irrigation system worked, “How do we get this kind of system?”  Even though the system is a bit expensive for the average farmer, we tried to explain with examples how the results would pay for the system after just a few harvests from a small box garden.

Station 2: Micro/Drip Irrigation with Paul George, Tiondi Patrick and Onette Zorah

In the opening session, I explained that the “why” of what we are doing is Jesus. They all had access to gospel literature. Our sincere desire is that each person took something away which inspired them or taught them to see a way forward which has long term impact for them and their families! We are grateful for the RAU team that keeps on working tirelessly so that we have a beautiful place to showcase. I am grateful for the good partnership with World Vision as well as with their regional director, Lanek Pollicap. I am quite sure this is only the beginning with World Vision. ZOA is also requesting to bring farmers and they are also doing good work among the Refugees. It was good to have government representatives here as well so they could “look and see“. RAU continues its policy of not charging any fees (though that is the normal practice here in Uganda) to World Vision, other groups or to any famers  who come to RAU’s demo farm to learn. 

Station 3: Grafted Mango Production and Land Management with Jacob Lee and Alumai Henery

“Learning at RAU was amazing. Carol and Jacob are God sent. I am delighted to have known you. I will not make a mistake of losing contact with you and if there are opportunity to bring more people to your farm for more learning, I will, including linking more partners to you as long as they are ready to learn. Looking forward for more Ministry work together.”

Lanek Pollicap | Component Manager || EUTF-SUPREME PROJECT|| World Vision Uganda

On February 5th we were in Aliodranyosi, a Yumbe village which has a desperate need for clean water.  They are literally drinking murky water from a hole which seeps through the ground. Proverbs 25:25 says “As cold water to a tired soul, so is good news from a far country.” In our case, the “cold water” WAS the good news. We also had the privilege of letting them know that a loving gift was given which would provide them a proper borehole with a hand pump, allowing them to drink clear, clean water. I love to tell them the “why” of the gift (the love of God through His people) and the “how” (RAU is only a pipeline of grace and it will take a process but the process will soon begin.) I reminded them that the borehole (well) when finished will now become THEIRS, which means the upkeep belongs to them to manage with the help of a water committee (formed by them) which collects a small monthly fee that is saved for future needs. So far that has been working very well in the 23 other villages where RAU has been able to assist with a borehole. We are grateful for TouCan Ventures for the funding of this borehole and for another village in Moyo District in a similar situation. Selecting villages for boreholes is very difficult as there are a large number of villages in our Moyo District and nearby Yumbe District which have NO access to clean water. As mentioned in our last newsletter, we are seeking to add 22 to the 23 we have put in since 2014. Would you consider helping us in this?

Drinking water for the village of Aliodranyosi

While we were waiting for a friend to arrive, we were able to interact and get to know some of the community members. During this time we gave some reading materials, in this case, in Aringa–some New Testaments and other Christian literature translated from English to Aringa by our friend, Onduga Charles. I am very grateful that Charles was able to join us as my interpreter in Aringa. Charles can (usually) pick my English as well as pick my heart and spirit and can explain what I am saying in a way that reflects my heart and meaning. We have been working together since 2014 and he has interpreted in Christian-Muslim Dialogs and Open air preaching in the markets on market days.
RAU is truly grateful for all those whose hearts are touched to give for this particular project. One young man stood up at the end and asked, on behalf of 70 or so other villages, if they have received such a gift, could this gift also not be given to their brothers and sisters in the other places. How we wish we could! May the Lord grant it to be so!

On a personal note we recently had a scare.  Our 5 year granddaughter was airlifted by helicopter to the Cooks Children’s Hospital February 6th! She started to have a hard time breathing and her parents took her to the local hospital and, then,almost immediately taken to Ft. Worth. Her oxygen level was very very low. It appears there was some kind of infection in her lungs. She is back home now and doing well, praise God!  Also, our granddaughter (oldest) was found to have a bone cyst in her finger which requires surgery and a bone graft. She is 10 years old. It is so hard for us to be away from them, especially when things go awry, and we are not to be able to support them in times of trouble. Carol and I pray daily for our family. We request your prayers for us and them that our trust would remain in the Lord! Thank  you very much!

Our granddaughter and daughter. Our granddaughter said she enjoyed the helicopter ride but is not ready to ride in a plane! 

Carol and I are grateful for the Lord’s grace and mercy. We are also very thankful for those who are supporting us in prayers and with their financial gifts.

(In the village of Aliodranyosi)

Your partners in walking out 2 Timothy 2:2 with our Ugandan and Sudanese brothers and sisters in Christ,

Jacob and Carol Lee

Love and Blessings from both of us!

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RAU’s Mission and Vision Statements/Statement of Faith:

The greatest evil is having the gospel and not doing everything within our power to get it to those who do not have it!

Sowing seeds of love and kindness should not be separated from preaching the gospel of sovereign grace but completely intertwined with it!

When at least 35% of the world; “the unoccupied fields”, have no access to the gospel, we (believers) must all do all we can to reach them. We who are saved owe the gospel to every lost person, most especially the 2.4 billion who will not hear unless someone breaks into their “unoccupied field” with no thought of their own life!

Sowing seeds of love and kindness should not be separated from preaching the gospel of sovereign grace but completely intertwined with it!

I am sure that none of us will say when in heaven that we prayed too much, we sacrificed too much, proclaimed the gospel too much, and were too passionate to get the gospel to those who have little to no access to this gospel of grace. Let us together press on to make it our  ambition to preach the gospel where Christ has not been named!

Our goal in our gospel witness is to take our eyes off the “risk” and place them on the cause for the risk. When God compels us like this he often will not tell us the risks…after all there are no risks for the all-knowing, all-powerful God. So let us be AMBITIOUS (Romans 15:20) to see that ALL are reached with the gospel of grace (Romans 1:16) in ALL places…there are no closed doors to the gospel, just some which are more difficult to go through!

Jacob Lee