who have obtained
like precious faith with us by the righteousness
of our God
and Saviour Jesus Christ
Glenn and I wanted
to write and tell you about a place here in South Africa that we have recently
visited. We came to this place because this Government has been
overwhelmed with the cataract back log coming in from this area. The area
is called Khayelitsha, which means "New Home". It is a 6 mile
by 6 mile sea of wall to wall makeshift shacks made of tin and scrap
wood. Each home is about 6'x6', some a bit larger and others
are more lean-tos. Yet they continue to come. They are blacks coming into
the big city to find work. Some have. We saw men dressed in suits
arriving off the train to go home. We saw students in uniforms walking
home. But, 80% are unemployed. And, there are a million and half living
Many here are
Christian. About 2% are Muslim. But, they keep there ancient traditions
alive here. If there is a wedding, the bride's family still brings
a live cow and sacrifices it at the house ( and then cooks it for all) to
signify their blessing the marriage! Evidently, there has been a lot on
the media here protesting this type of thing and political cartoons drawn about
As we drove
through parts of it, it looked a lot like conditions in Liberia where
the ship is now. But, this government has been able to supply them with
portapotties that run into the sewer system and near them is access to tap
water! Way better...but you wouldn't want to live there!
They also have there markets selling everything and anything they can get their
hands on or make. One table ( no , I didn't take a picture) was
neatly lined with donkey heads, fur and all! Another had various entrails
and another cow hooves attached to 18" of leg! Bathing outside was
a must, but in their rainy season, their houses leak anyway. Because they cook
over open fires, many fires break out in these areas. One broke out this
week. Usually these spread rapidly because of how close all the places
are built and last time, 25 people died! The government has begun to
build Habitat style housing , but they cannot keep up with the influx of people
and 10 more go up overnight!
Psalms 61:2 says "
When my heart is overwhelmed, Lead me to the rock that is higher than I".
That is what we are praying concerning Mercy Ships' part in helping these
people. We have talked to government Ministers of Health, hospitals,
ophthalmologists and CEOs about how to meet the need. All say that there
IS a need. All say that the government cannot take care of it. All say
that it affects each family who has a blind person because often that is the
person who is taking care of the children or the one who would be working if
they were not blind. But, it is overwhelming need!
Mercy Ships knows
we cannot bring the ship here. So, Glenn and I , with the South African
office for Mercy Ships are working on a solution using the resources we have.
And we are praying for whether or not God wants us involved at all. Please pray
with us about this daunting task.
The good news is
that we have found many who are of like in precious faith who are poised and
ready to help. This is encouraging. They would like to see the kingdom
expanded in their country. They would like an answer this year ( preferably
before March so they can start planning). The Lord is our higher
Rock. Pray He leads us.
We have our
meeting with the South African Board soon to discuss what we have learned. We will
be leaving here to travel to England
The Lord bless you
and keep you in His Peace,
Glenn and Kim