Monday, July 20, 2009
Yes we finally made it back to Canada! We’re so happy to be back and get a chance to see all of you, our dear friends and family. We were glad to see that there was some warm weather here in Abbotsford to welcome us back. Not only was there warm weather but a warm welcome from Bill and Sandi McGladdery who have let us take over the main floor of their home here in Abbotsford. Their house will be our home base while we are here in Canada.
We want to thank all of you who prayed for Jane to be able to get a passport. We had been trying for two years to get Jane’s Ugandan passport renewed without any success. It was SO frustrating to see how the Ugandan officials do not have the heart to facilitate their own citizens in their travels. We eventually decided to try to go to Rwanda to get Jane a passport there as she is of Rwandan decent. What a different story! We were helped immediately when we went into the Rwandan embassy in Kampala. They helped us attain all the documents we needed for a Rwandan passport – including a letter of recommendation from the Ambassador himself! We enjoyed our stay in beautiful and clean Kigali and got Jane’s passport within eight days of filing. Unfortunately we were not able to get a passport for Tugume our nephew (hopefully next furlough we will be able to bring him back with us). It was such a joyful moment when Jane got her passport. We could hardly believe it. We didn’t know whether to laugh or cry so we did a bit of both. Thanks everyone for your fervent and persistent prayers. Please continue to pray as one of the main reasons for having our furlough at this time is for Jane to secure her Canadian citizenship before her Permanent Resident card expires in September.
We are really excited about some new training material that we have been introduced to recently and that we will now be using. FGW stands for Farming God’s Way. Farming God’s Way was developed in Zimbabwe and is basically Kingdom agriculture; focusing on Godly stewardship of our land, energy and resources. Chris attended a FGW seminar at New Hope Uganda and then promptly put in an FGW “well-watered” garden at our home, using FGW methods such as a heavy mulch layer, no tillage, and properly spaced planting stations. FGW takes peasant farmers towards zero tillage and continuous mulch cover – this leads to much higher yields and virtually no soil and nutrient loss. Farming God’s Way does not need high economic input and therefore is a very sustainable method. There’s a lot more to say but you can check out their site at www.farming-gods-way.org .
We have also continued to forge our partnership with Arise Africa International (AAI) over the last few months. We recently surveyed the future training farm site with an eMi (Engineering Ministries International www.emiworld.org) team. Also, John Sauder, an eMi missionary serving with AAI is helping to put together a project proposal complete with engineering drawings and site plans for us. Thanks also to Lindsay (eMi intern) who is working on the architectural drawings right now. It is exciting to see these plans come together. We plan on opening the training farm in September 2010 to our first students. The farm will be called “Providence Farm Uganda” and has the potential to host a variety of training courses that Equip currently offers only in North America in addition to the planned agriculture training centre.
We are coming to a town near you! We begin our speaking tour of Western Canada in September and will be traveling through BC, Alberta and Saskatchewan until the end of October. We would love to give a presentation about our work and vision to you, your home Bible study group or your church. Chris is willing to preach, share a Power Point presentation or even share about the FGW principles. Please use any of the contacts below to book your spot. We are happy to get together with those around BC before the fall as we will be spending time around Abbotsford with our church family at South Abbotsford Church.
We look forward to seeing all of you soon and sharing with you about what we’ve been doing and where God is leading us.
Chris and Jane, Andrew Kenny, Albert, Isaiah and Ezra