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Rwanda 2012, Part Four

December 15, 2012

Part of the team’s project was to buy some goats and a cow to give to the needy in the area. The Church had raised the money to purchase relief supplies to help the Gisenyi area people and most of the supplies including fifty goats, had been purchased. The Rwanda government officials had been contacted and they had selected people who had lost their homes in a flood just two weeks earlier after a rain storm in the town of Rubavu, near Gisenyi. The presentation of the fifty goats, a cow and the other supplies was scheduled for the next day and we were stuck in Kigali due to the conflict in the Congo.

Pastor Simon was prepared to return for the presentation so after some discussion it was decided that anyone who would sign a release, which relieved the Church from responsibility for our safety, could attend the presentation with Pastor Simon. Four of us decided to attend, so it was back in the SUV for the four-hour ride early the next morning. The presentation would include one farmer receiving the cow and fifty of the flood victims receiving a goat, two plates, two cups, a large bag of flour, two blankets and a Bible translated into Kinyarwanda, the local language. We arrived at a small Church where the presentation was to be held; the Church was pastored by Simon’s wife, Caritas.

Nazarene Church in Rubavu

Nazarene Church in Rubavu

We spent some time greeting the people arriving for the presentation and interacting with the children. It was a good time to practice the few words of Kinyarwanda that I knew like Hello which is “muraho”.

The girls interacting with the children

The girls interacting with the children

After greeting the people as they arrived, a meeting with the government officials who coordinated the presentation, decided on how it would be done. We all lined up with the supplies as the officials read off the names. It all started with the presentation of the cow to a local farmer.

A local farmer with his new cow

A local farmer with his new cow

There were some speeches from the local officials and our team leader and then all of the material was laid out for the fifty people who were flood victims. The team members and local officials formed a line, the people were called by name and came down the line to receive their goat as well as the other relief items.

Getting ready to hand out supplies to the flood victems

Getting ready to hand out supplies to the flood victims

As the names were called out the people lined up and receive their goat then proceeded down the line to receive their plates, cups, flour, blankets and the Bibles.

Receiving the goat

Receiving the goat

Once all of the goats and other things were presented the people all gathered in a group, held up the Bibles and sang us a song of thanks.

A final celibration and thanksgiving

A final celebration and thanksgiving

Headed home with the goat in tow

Headed home with her goat in tow

We all felt it a great honor to be able to participate in this activity. To see the joy on the faces of people who had lost everything they had, to be able to help in some small way and to be able to serve the Lord this day was a humbling experience . It says in Colossians 3:17 “And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

The presentation was near Lake Kivu and after it was over we proceeded to the lake shore for some refreshment. This is a very large lake that goes the length of Rwanda with the Congo on the other side. We could see the fishing boats and the beautiful shoreline.

Fishing boats on Lake Kivu

Fishing boats on Lake Kivu

At the end of a long day it was back to Kigali and the Nazarene Mission house for the night.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Greg Ledyard permalink
    December 16, 2012 10:11 pm

    What an awesome experience. Thanks for these wonderful posts. Marcia Date: Sat, 15 Dec 2012 19:35:05 +0000 To: gregledyard@hotmail.com

  2. December 17, 2012 10:55 pm

    Thanks for the update Lee, and thanks too for the Christmas Card. Look me up when you get back to Michigan.

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