Sabbath in Lilongwe, Malawi

Saturday, October 11, 2008
Lilongwe, Malawi
The Lockwood's and we share an apartment-type accommodation at the Ufulu Lodge. It's very comfortable. Water pressure is the one of the finest features of this place...along with a pleasant and uplifting atmosphere.
We had not previously met the Scott and Collette Lockwood, but after less than a day feel like we've known them for a long time.  
Because our body clocks are a little off, we're up at 4:00 am. Scott Lockwood is working on his sermonette and I've going over my sermon on Hope.
Breakfast is brought into our apartment and then we're off to Church services at 11:00 am. We will be using my projector today to see the words of the hymns. Because the new UCG hymnals have yet to come to make it to Africa, we thought it best to make the words visible via PowerPoint.
Again, it's great to visit with the brethren who are friendly and cheerful. In spite of Africa's ills, the people project a happiness that is sometimes hard to describe.  
Scott Lockwood gave an excellent sermonette about COMMITMENT. The Lilongwe choir sang and I concluded with a sermon about HOPE. After services it was good to talk to many people that we know through communications or through the education of livelihood development grants that LifeNets has provided. We are very pleased with the work of most of the students.  
Afterwards, we decided to visit two families. Chiphale and Lester (wife) Njewa were not able to make it to Church because Chiphale has had a stroke and his leg is numb. He sits quietly in his humble dwelling. The other family, Frazier and Jesse Nyalubwe were in Church and we drove them home. We had nine people in our ambulance. Wordsworth Rashid guided us to the Chilinde area of Lilongwe where they live.   
We visited first with the Nyalubwe's. Several of their children Leah, Kennedy, Chisomo have received scholarships. Jesse has been helped with her sewing business and Frazier has been helped with construction tools. Jesse is a talented seamstress and showed off her work.  
We then went over to the Chiphale and Lester Njewa's home. This is where we put in "Rebecca's Well."  Financing for this well was provided by a birthday party hosted by Rebecca McClure in Indianpolis, Park Tudor School and my Indianapolis Northeast Rotary Club. That paid for about 60% of the cost of a borehole that serves the neighborhood in this section of Lilongwe.  
As we worked our way to the Njewa's through the terrible "back streets" towards town and back to our where we're staying. All of a sudden we come to a blocked road lined on both sides with little outdoor shops and   vendors. There is shouting an almost a fight among a group of men. We can't move. Wordsworth tells us that a mini-bus that take people around blocked traffic to wait for more passengers and were taking their sweet old time. Finally, after about 10-15 minutes the blockage cleared and we struggled through the streets to the Njewa's.  

Jennifer Myers has already been out here to the well. It was good to see this project done. The Njewa's have really appreciated the water. As we visited the well many children came around and were eager to be photographed.
We then struggled back through the same "back streets" to our part of town. We went to a restaurant in a shopping center as it opens at 5:00 PM. Darkness comes quickly at 5:30 PM. We all enjoyed a fun dinner and were glad to have Wordsworth Rashid join us. Afterwards Scott and I drove Wordsworth home after dropping Bev, Collette and the kids back at the Ufulu Lodge.
One interesting note. We see many business called "*.* Investements"  I ask what are they investing in? Why would I want to "invest" in anything here? I find out that "Investments" means the same as something like LLC in the US. OK.
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