Winding Down-March 2018

Winding Down-March 2018

                                                                                                                                                                March 2018

Dear Prayer Partners,

Just thought I would give a brief update on our time here as it is winding down.  I leave to come home March 16th.  John will be flying on to Yaoundé, Cameroon to work for SIL for three weeks on a special project. He will then return to Bangui and wrap things up here and then come home. Pease be in prayer for him while he is gone.

John and I (mostly John) have had several meetings with Dr. Nupanga looking at the challenges of an aging infrastructure.   Items that have been addressed is providing better internet access for the students as well as the faculty, providing water on a more consistent basis, and looking at solar power for the library.  John, as well as others on the Mtelo board, have worked on a grant request for several different projects.  First, John and Nupanga have been exploring solar power and we are planning our first solar project.  Funds have been requested funds in a grant proposal to convert the library from commercial power to solar power. FATEB hopes to begin this project this summer if the grant is approved. We have received pricing to install a campus wide WI-FI system which will also be powered using solar.

As part of the grant request, we have also requested funds from foundations to replace old galvanized water lines (which have closed) with plastic water lines in eleven residential buildings.  These building include 24 apartments in married housing, 6 duplexes and the single student housing building.  These supply lines have rusted, and the flow is restricted to a trickle. As a result, there is either no water or very limited water pressure.  Students are required to draw water from several locations around the campus.  This project will provide for the restoration of indoor plumbing for the married and student housing as well as the increased pressure for the duplexes. Pray that the funds will be granted.

Work continues at the Leadership Center; door frames have been made and installed and they are currently working on making and installing the window frames.  Water has been hooked up to the building.  The Lord has provided the workers; all glory to God.

I have been enjoying my time with the children’s program.  It is so encouraging to watch and listen to the children recite the memory verses from heart. We always ask questions after the Bible story to make sure they understand what they have heard and to answer any questions.  Then off to coloring with such jubilation!  The teen girls continue to amaze me.  One of the teen girls, Gratia, will lead the singing and then after a few songs she takes us into a time of prayer.  So awesome to see these girls mature in the Lord and take leadership roles.  I have known Gratia since she was very young, and she has been coming to the teen girl program since 2012.  Her mother is the director of the ecole maternelle-the kindergarten school and pre-school and her father is a professor here at FATEB. I am amazed at their insight when we ask them questions relating to the devotions. The teen boys have welcomed me, we have a great time together-and they are willing to learn any craft I offer, which has been a challenge for my brain. We then end with a game of soccer or basketball.  Please continue to pray for all these children and teens that they will continue to grow in their faith and in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus.

I always enjoy my time with the women in the women’s school.  They have such steadfast faith and inner joy. Please pray for them in their challenges of raising children here in difficult situations.

My time with the English class is also coming to an end and I will miss our time together.  We are already talking about next year.  We have been working on sharing their testimony in English.  As Bible translators they often must raise funds to attend conferences or for special projects, so it would be helpful if they are able to write it in English when requesting funds from westerners.  Currently they write the request, and someone edits it and then translates it for them.  They would like to one day write it themselves.  Please pray for the translation work so thousands more will have the gospel in their own language.

Pray for the theological students here as they study and then return to lead their churches in the truth of God’s Word and spread the good news.  Psalm 86:9 “All nations whom thou hast made shall come and worship before thee, O Lord; and they shall glorify Thy name.”

I had the privilege to watch two SIL missionary children for 10 days while their parents were in a spiritual retreat.  They were such a delight and it was a real treat for me. Pray for the SIL missionaries and the challenges they face living and raising children here in Bangui and around the world.

Please pray for John and me as we were asked to lead chapel on Friday.  I will be leading the singing (fortunately one does not need a good voice to do this-just enthusiasm) and reading the Scripture and John will be preaching.  While he and I have already done that in the English service here-there are usually only about 20 people, chapel is in front of the entire student body-yikes!! John doesn’t mind getting up there, but my nerves will be on edge-pray for calmness and peace for me and that the Holy Spirit will speak through John.

Thank you again for your prayers.  It is such an encouragement to know people are praying for us.  We pray that we will see others through the eyes of Jesus and love as Jesus loves.


John and Marilyn

Some of the girls receiving their yarn
Coloring their Bible story picture
Installing the window frames
Women’s School
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