Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas from Tchincombe!



Merry Christmas from Tchincombe!

We are having a wonderful cool, wet Christmas! Since 1 Dec Tchincombe has received more than ½ of what we usually get in a year! We have had overcast skies for more than a week! We are very thankful!!

As word of mouth about Tchincombe beef (yum) goes around we have more and more requests for meat! That’s good and that’s bad! It means we (mostly Stirling) spend more time in the car than we would like – must find a different plan! Stirling is delivering meat today in order to fill everyone’s orders! Pray for stamina!

Please PRAY for Sunday’s services at Imbondwe – that the meaning of Christmas would be clear! God came in the form of a babe to restore us to himself - so that we can know Him and enjoy him forever! He wants to be our God, King, Friend, Brother/Sister & Savior!

Please pray for Stirling as he brings the message tomorrow at 8 AM – he hasn’t had very much time to prepare with all the traveling of the last week!!

Early in the New Year we will go to Namibia to organize transport for fencing. We’ll also take a few days of holiday to go to Botswana to visit two of our nieces and to meet Peter and Shelley who are returning to Africa!

With Much Love,

Donna, Stirling, Jeffrey, and Meghan

The catchment basins are full!!! This usually only happens in Jan or Feb! It’s not a remote dog but a remote boat that you can’t see in picture!


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Adventure continues here at Tchincombe!!!

The Adventure continues here at Tchincombe!!!

We are having rabbit for lunch. Stirling, Jeffrey and Matt (Jeff’s friend) took our weekend visitors sightseeing and hunting on Saturday. So today we have rabbit on the menu! Rabbit cacciatore!

Last night we had microwave omelets and the boys decided to add a little food coloring! Guess what food coloring each used? Jeffrey had orange eggs! Matt had green eggs (no ham). Meghan had bluish eggs! Stirling and I settled for plain old yellow!

Sheila Foster Fabiano returns to the USA tomorrow. She is returning to help take care of Mum and Dad Foster as well as work on her doctorate. Please pray for her transition and for peace of heart as she knows she’s doing the right thing but is torn because she really does love her work at ISTEL (AEA seminary).

Rains have been good. Crops are getting in the ground. The people are really in need of a good harvest – pray that the rain continues well! People here literally live off the food they harvest!

We are looking into ways of purchasing game animals to stock Tchincombe. There are vast tracks of the 60,000 acres that are too thick for cattle but would be great for game (kudu, eland, and impala). These are good meat animals and will allow diversification of income. Pray for wisdom & patience for God’s perfect timing in all of this. Lord willing, in time, we’ll also be able to help repopulate this area’s depleted game reserves!

Continue to pray for lives at Tchincombe and Imbondwe to be transformed! For all of us to understand that God doesn’t just want to save us from our sins but that he wants an ongoing, daily vital relationship with us!

PRAISE – we were able to distribute 90 treated mosquito nets yesterday! We should see a significant drop in malaria! Nets were supplied by Rio de Huila Clinic (another UIEA/SIM ministry).

Thanks for your partnership!

Donna for all of us!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Raindrops keeping falling . . . . !

Raindrops keeping falling . . . . J ! While we were in Namibia Tchincombe had 109 mm of rain (> 4 inches). Since our return we’ve had 80mm (>1.5 inch) and it’s raining as I write – WOW! What a relief!

We are glad to have Jeffrey back with us! He had a great time at our friend’s farm and learned a lot.

While we were away Perpetua’s nephew stole some things from our pantry. This young boy, Njonjombua is an orphan. He and his two brothers have been living with Perpetua’s family for a few years now. There have been other incidents of petty robbery over the years (within the family as well as in the community). Perpetua and her husband have decided to take the boys back to another uncle. Pray for the boys that they will turn away from this way of life. Pray for Perpetua and Nobrega who feel betrayed by their nephews.

Pray for the ladies at Tchincombe to hunger and thirst to know God better!

Pray for the people in the Imbondwe area to see the futility of a life without Christ. Our next meeting there is the 27th of December.

For your prayers and gifts of support we are grateful!

YOUR PARTNERSHIP IS ESSENTIAL!

Donna for all of us!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Meghan and I finished 3rd grade!!!

Hi Again!

How could I forget to tell you that Meghan and I finished 3rd grade!!!

We are free from school for 6 weeks! Thanks for all your prayers on our behalf.

Love,

Donna

100° F today!

100° F today! No rain since 3 weeks ago! Grass is beginning to wilt. There were NO clouds yesterday and day before BUT today lots of clouds! PRAY for rain! AND PRAY for us to not be anxious!!

There were 72 people at Imbondwe today – PRAISE God that there many new people. PRAY for desire to know GOD!

The professors from ISTEL (the Evangelical Seminary of Lubango) came this weekend to Tchincombe for a work retreat. Seems like a contradiction in terms BUT here at least they were away from cell phones and people knocking at the door! PRAY for the staff of ISTEL as they seek to train leaders.

Tomorrow we head out to Namibia to pick up Jeffrey. We hope to be back at Tchincombe by next Sunday – i.e. it will be a whirlwind trip! As always we’ll be doing shopping for the farm and for ourselves!

PRAY for Firmino, Tutyiale and Paulo as they direct the work of the farm and the community here!

THANKS so much for standing with us in prayer!

Donna for all of us!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

We did FINALLY have more than an inch of rain!!

Hi!

PRAISE - We did FINALLY have more than an inch of rain!! On Sunday, 9 days ago, 30mm of rain fell and quenched the earth’s thirst! It was wonderful! We have had sprinkles now and then. More rain is always welcome and needed.

Each year we watch the sky with anxiety. Will there be enough rain? Will it come at the right time? What if it doesn’t? What will we do? We ask you to pray for rain. We really should ask you to pray for us not to be anxious! To pray that we would remember that the people, land, cattle and we ourselves belong to God! Whatever falls or doesn’t fall from the sky - God will sustain us! To pray for wisdom to make good decisions!

PRAISE – We have received the money from cattle sales and then transferred enough money to buy 30 km of fencing (includes poles, gates, wire, droppers) – ½ of what we need to fence the entire perimeter of Tchincombe and 5 km o f water piping! God’s timing is really perfect as the exchange rate in Namibia is 10 to 1 – hasn’t been that good since we started thinking about fencing!

PRAY for Jeffrey. He’s two weeks into his 4 week work experience. We talked with him on Sunday. He’s happy, enjoying himself, working hard and a little tired. We leave 1 Dec to pick him up. PRAY

for him that he’ll learn to rely on the Lord. Give thanks for the farm family where he’s living – for their generosity in having him. We’ll then go to Windhoek for a day or two to do some Christmas shopping and to arrange for the transport of the fencing.

PRAY for us to understand how great a salvation we have been given. And what it means that Jesus is our High Priest. (Can you tell we’re reading in Hebrews!)

PRAY for meetings at Imbondwe on 29/30 November – openness to God’s Word.

The granting of visas for missionaries continues to be an issue – please PRAY the two couples in Portugal who will be needing visas.

Don’t forget to lift up the Fox family daily! They have all their outgoing expenses – are in need of monthly support so they can join us here at Tchincombe!

ONE LAST THOUGHT: Are you looking for year-end tax deductible giving options? Consider the work here at Tchincombe J ! All gifts to our ministry account would be appreciated greatly!

In Him,

Donna

Monday, October 27, 2008

4 mm DOES not = 1 inch of rain!

Dear Praying Friends,

4 mm DOES not = 1 inch of rain! A dear friend in Namibia pointed out my mistake – and I must admit when I wrote it didn’t seem quite right because it sure didn’t feel like a one inch rain! More like 1/8 of an inch! We are still waiting for a GOOD thoroughly soaking rain here at Tchincombe.

At Imbondwe – we did have a good rain – a ground soaking, stop the show rain! So on Saturday evening we went to bed at 8 PM since there’s not much else to do when you are camping and it’s raining! Sunday morning there was a good turn out for church – even 6 older, traditionally dressed people – keep praying that the older generations will not consider this ‘new religion’ just for the young people – but will see that God desires a day to day relationship with THEM!

The man in who’s village area where we meet asked for a Bible which we gave him this week. In return he gave us a chicken!

Stirling and Jeffrey head off to Namibia tomorrow. Jeffrey is going to work again at the farm of good friends. His school is mostly complete – computer issues delayed his typing course but he should be able to finish it after he returns from this work experience.

PRAISE!! Stirling will be doing shopping in Windhoek including setting up the purchase and transport of fencing and water piping!

Pray for safety in travel – especially no run ins with game (kudu, warthog, etc)

In Him,

Donna

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Greetings from Tchincombe in the Spring!

Greetings from Tchincombe in the Spring! This has been the most beautiful spring we can remember. Perhaps with the late but plentiful rains there is still water close enough in the ground for the shrubs and trees to really burst forth! Monday, 10 days ago, we had the first rain of the season - 4 mm of rain (about 1 inch) – what a relief – we want more! J !
PRAISE! A buyer came to look at cattle today! He will buy two lots of animals – we should have a good sum to buy fencing and water piping! There won’t be enough to buy all that we need to fence the entire perimeter but enough to get a good start – even if we landed all of the needed 60 km of fencing tomorrow it would take months to get the posts in and wire up.
We were in touch with the fencing company and the price of wire has come down!! Yippee!
Stirling
is on his way to town for the second time this week! Pray for endurance and alertness – he will travel back tomorrow. The trip to town is 200 km (125 mi) – but it takes 4 hours! We hope that will soon be down to 3 as work on the main road progresses – paving has arrived almost to the place where we turn off the main road. When all the construction is done (not just paving but bridge rebuilding) is will be wonderful! The main road to Tchincombe will be a bush track for many years to come – usually takes 2 hours – as long as it doesn’t rain!
Pray for our ladies’ meeting tomorrow (had to postpone from today to tomorrow) – we will be discussing why Believers shouldn’t take their sick loved ones to the witch doctor!
PRAY for the services at Imbondwe this weekend. Last month we had a good group of young people learning to play Frisbee. There weren’t too adults to see the film because of a coming of age party in the neighborhood. Pray for open hearts, for fun and relationship building.
Please continue to pray for the FOX FAMILY who have received all of their outgoing support but who still need monthly support!
Pray for the Verhoefs and Schemps who are presently in Portugal doing language study in preparation for ministry here in Angola.
Thanks so much for your faithfulness in prayer, financial support and for all your encouraging e-mails, etc!
Love,
Donna for all of us!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

The General Assembly meetings went very well

Greetings FROM Tchincombe – the kids and I have been away for 10 days and Stirling for 15 days! Stirling had an uneventful trip from Menongue – other than when he got home he ran straight to the loo (WC, bathroom) and thus commenced 3 days of staying close to the loo! Poor guy!

The General Assembly meetings went very well – the new president of the UIEA, Eduardo Chiquete was elected by more than a 2/3 majority – that was encouraging. THANKS for praying!

Our time at Imbondwe was . . . interesting! There was a big party – a coming of age ceremony – in a nearby village and so we had only about 15 kids on Saturday night. Sunday morning there were only about 10 adults and 15 children! BUT one of the adults there was the man who had given his heart to the Lord month before last and the older gentlemen who’s home we are near came and asked for a Bible! KEEP PRAYING!

We did business in town and then went to the beach for the weekend. It was very nice – the beach was nice the only not so nice part was that a friend who came along came down with malaria. He did bring treatment along (never leave home without it!) and so started treatment – he’s well on the mend now.

Chickens – today I managed to buy 20 laying hens! The producer in Lubango is having a hard time getting feed and so is having to sell his chickens – not good for him but good for us!

Thanks so much for being part of the team!

Donna for all of us!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hi!! Two things!

Hi!! Two things!

Forgot to mention one thing important about this year’s UIEA General Assembly - a new president will be nominated and elected – please pray for the whole process and that just the right man will be chosen!

Last e-mail we mentioned the need for fencing/piping – we are NOT asking for money but for PRAYER!

There are two options:

PRAY for buyers for the cattle that we have to sell!! OR

PRAY about the bank loan we have applied to receive: In an earlier e-mail we wrote about the fact that we had applied for a loan from the bank – despite filling out the forms and being asked further questions the bank has not come back to us! Tchincombe being owned by a Church doesn’t fall into the bank’s usual customer profile!

There is a third option – and only the Lord knows what it might be! He does work out things in ways we do not understand!

THANKS for standing with us in PRAYER!

In Him,

Donna

Saturday, September 20, 2008

please pray for rain!!

Greetings from Tchincombe! The gray/brown landscape of the cold, dry season has begun to be sprinkled with vibrant greens, whites and pale reds as the trees & bushes respond to the hot, dry season! Temps are rising – the heat is on! We are definitely longing for the rain! Our young stock especially need some nice new grass – please pray for rain!!

Stir went to Lubango yesterday and is driving the 12 hour trip to Menongue today for a week of General Assembly meetings. (It’s only 500km).

Please pray for wisdom and patience as reports are given and things discussed. Pray too for a spirit of unity, enthusiasm and joy. That God’s will will be everyone’s top priority!

This is slightly pessimistic but I’m waiting for something to break down – you know how it goes! Let the husband go away and something always breaks! Pray that I will let my breath out and relax!!

THANKSGIVING - Our friend, Brent from MAF, was here for a week. He and Stir accomplished quite a lot. They put the HF in the brown car (so we can be in communication with Stir from Menongue), got the 4 wheeler going so it can be used for outreach at the corrals and made a drag from old tractor tires to help level out the airstrip that Jerry cleared. Brent also got our dryer going and even put a light in the laundry room! (The dryer was donated from the USA to friends working in Namibia – but Namibia is 220v and the dryer is 110v; Brent heard of it and told them that we had a 110v system at our house – so now we have a dryer!)

Pray for the $156,000 we need to buy fencing and to buy 10 km of water piping!

We have cut our workforce by 30% so that we could raise pay for the workers that stayed. Pray for us to be able to encourage and motivate the workers. Pray for those that aren’t followers of Jesus that they will see their need of Him!

Pray for those workers who were let go that they will be able to find other work!

Ongoing requests:

Last weekend of month – meetings at Imbondwe – the children and I will be going on Saturday – we will take a team from here.

Every Wednesday – ladies’ meeting – we are studying the catechism in Olungambwe!

Every Sunday afternoon – literacy class

Pray for a Bible in Olumhuila/Olungambwe!!

Pray for a teacher for the kids!

THANKS so much for your love and prayers!!!!

Donna for all of us!

Friday, September 12, 2008

September is the end of SIM’s fiscal year.

Greetings from Tchincombe!

September is the end of SIM’s fiscal year. We want to say a HUGE THANK YOU for your faithful support !!! We stand at 97% isn’t that AWESOME!

Pray that this month we will receive full support and that there will be extra so that we will be at 100% for the year !!!

Pray too for funds to cover the negative balance in our ministry account (shipping of vehicle).

Can it be that the rains might come early? We PRAY it would be so!! Pasture is getting marginal since we have not been able to sell the cattle that we needed to sell. PRAY for the rains to come early and well!!

Your Partners in Angola,

Donna & Stirling

Sunday, September 7, 2008

New Pictures!

Gabriel, Meghan, Lucas and Jeffrey!
Our family with Stirling's mom and dad.
Our most recent dairy calf- a heifer!
Jerry dozing!
All the family that could make it to the reunion.
Sani Pass!! Ice in Africa!
Day trip to Sani Pass- Mountain pass between South Africa and Lesotho.
Louise preparing to separate cream from milk.

Greetings FROM Tchincombe!

Greetings FROM Tchincombe! After one month and 7,000 km we are home! We arrived home at 12:30 AM – having left Windhoek at 5 AM – it was a LONG day and uneventful except for locking the keys in our car while we were fueling up in a place called Kamanjab. Stirling was able to take the seal off one of the small windows in the backset of the car and Meghan squeezed in to unlock – 45 minutes of hot work for Stir!

The night of our arrival the big generator had stopped running owing to a fan belt that broke! The guys replaced the fan belt but the engine didn’t want to start. So they came got Stir – we were all a little bleary eyed still – Stir went down and came back to get WD40 and starter spray stuff – he managed to persuade the generator pistons that they weren’t stuck and so the generator did start!! Whew! The generator has over 40,000 hours of op so is due for an overhaul. We hope it holds out until the rains come so that we can get by without it for a few days.

We are so grateful for the time we had with Stir’s parents, Peter, Shelley and Sheila in Windhoek. It was a very sweet time!

Mum and Dad Foster, Peter and Shelley as well as Jerry and Louise all arrived back on that side of the ocean safe and sound!

Summer has come all in a rush! We have just finished the cold dry season and are now in the hot dry season – everything is thirsting for the rain! Pray that it will come well and on time this year!!

Last update we told you that there were 65 people at Imbondwe – there were but ½ were from Tchincombe as a team from here went in the Unimog (farm truck)! Please begin to pray for 28 September when we will go and spend the weekend at Imbondwe – pray for open hearts!

Meghan, Jeffrey and I start school again on Monday. Please pray for patience and a willingness to do the work set before us. Please do pray for a teacher for the kids! It was so GREAT having Helena here doing school with Meghan – Meghan really enjoyed it! If you know of a teacher who would like an African adventure send them our way!! A teacher would also free me to do language and literacy!

PRAISE – the team from Tchincombe that took the animals to the Ag Fair reported that everything went well – all 20 animals sold for a good price!!

Elections as far as we can tell have gone smoothly and without incident – at least in our part of Angola.

THANKS for your partnership in sharing the Good News with the Ovangambwe!!

In Him,

Donna for all of us!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Hello from Windhoek!

Hello from Windhoek!

We’ve had a wonderful time with Stirling’s parents, Sheila, Peter and Shelley. We have lingered over meals and tea and enjoyed each other’s company. It’s always fun to hear stories of Mum and Dad Foster’s early years in Zambia and Angola.

On Wednesday morning we’ll be driving up to Angola – trying to go the whole way in one day – it will be quite a push! Please pray for stamina and alertness!!

Wednesday afternoon Stir’s parents and Peter & Shelley will be flying back to the USA – pray for them too!

PRAISE - Thanks for praying for the service yesterday at Imbondwe. There were about 65 people present! Continue to pray for spiritual growth of the new believers there!!

Friday, September 5th there are parliamentary elections in Angola. Pray for stability!

Jerry and Louise arrived today!! They have had a good time in Angola. We are so grateful that they could be at the farm while we have been away. Jerry was able to bulldoze land for a future runway, clear land around waterhole, and clear roads. Louise kept the milk side of things going and said there’s lots of butter.

We are looking forward to being home!! Thanks for your faithfulness in prayer!!

Love,

Donna & Stirling

Saturday, August 23, 2008

We are back in Windhoek having traveled 6,000 km safely!!

Hi!

We tried sending an update from the reunion/60th venue but the wireless was down the whole week! And we were a LONG way from any internet caf├ęs!!

PRAISE! We are back in Windhoek having traveled 6,000 km safely!! The car gave troubles at the beginning of the trip but a very helpful Land Rover dealer in Upington, SA put car on computer – found nothing, cleaned a few connections – and the car has worked perfectly ever since. It was 4:30 pm when we pitched up at the dealers but they were gracious and didn’t charge us anything!!!

Today has been quite stressful!! We were having tea at the dining room table in flat 7, a guy came in the door and snatched the 2 purses that were on a chair across the room from the dining table; Stir and Jeff gave chase but thief slammed outside metal gate and that little bit of delay allowed them to make it to the get away car!! Sheila lost money, credit cards and car keys!! Joan Brain (missionary friend in her 70s) lost money, credit cards, plane ticket and passport! Police came and took reports but we are doubtful of getting things back. Stir did get car color, make, the fact it was a taxi and most of license # - apparently this has happened at this SIM guest house before and there is suspicion that it’s the same guys! SIGH!

PRAISE! The reunion and 60th celebration was great - lots of time to visit and play! We were 27 people! Really couldn’t have asked for a better time. The trip over took a lot out of Stir’s parents. Family had time to sit and talk about Mum and Dad’s future needs. It seems that the time has now arrived that Mum and Dad Foster should no longer live or travel alone. The state of their health made us all think it would not be wise to go on to Angola as planned. The earliest they could return to USA was 3 September without losing their ticket (original plan was Sept 30). They flew to Windhoek from South Africa as it was the routing of their return ticket. Peter and Shelley's work visa has not been renewed yet - they have graciously accepted to return to USA with Mum and Dad and stay with them until December. PRAY for Peter and Shelley as they came to Africa expecting to go back to work in Angola and in the space of a few days they had to decide to return! It's not easy.

The original plan was to have Mum and Dad with us in Angola but since they aren't going up we'll spend time with them here in Windhoek. We were frustrated by our delayed departure from Angola but now it makes sense! The Lord knew we'd need the time on this end of our trip!

We are VERY grateful to the foremen, Latimers and to Brent Mudde (friend/colleague with MAF) who are holding things together at Tchincombe! Fuel has continued to be an issue – Brent went once to visit Latimers and take them fresh veggies; he went a second time to take fuel so that Jerry could continue bulldozing! Louise says BP (our parrot) is talking up a storm! And that our freezer is getting quite full of butter!! Latimers will fly to Windhoek on 1 September.

Please PRAY for the service at Imbondwe on last Sunday – Steve, Brent and Latimers are planning to be there. Pray for the new believers there to continue to grow in their faith!

Please PRAY for Angola as elections are September 5th.

PRAISE – A Sunday school class at Calvary Baptist Church collected $600 to help pay the outstanding amount on the 130.

In Him,

Donna for all of us!

Monday, August 4, 2008

We are setting off today on our holiday

Dearest Praying Family,

We are setting off today on our holiday – only 5 days late! Stirling had to change the clutch and the wiring loom on the car this past week (was scheduled for the week the thieves made of with the cattle). The Kudu’s clutch isn’t acting quite normal so we’d appreciate your prayers for safety in travel. Until Windhoek we’ll have both vehicles. The 130 will stay in Windhoek while we are in SA so that we can buy supplies on our way home.

For those of you who have written but we haven’t responded – sorry, life has been crazy – even yesterday the neighbor’s brought a worker who needed a few stitches so life has been full of unexpected surprises – thanks for your e-mails and prayers – will write along the way as we have time!!

Meghan is not feeling well so we ask prayer for her – she has fever and cough. Since she was in town for 2 weeks we tested her for malaria yesterday and she was negative.

Please pray for Jerry and Louise Latimer as they hold down the fort in our absence! They are a real encouragement to us – in their 70s and out here doing a short term missions trip.

Pray for Stirling’s parents (in 80s) who are making trip to SA next week for their 60th wedding anniversary celebration!! Pray for stamina and health. Pray also for all the others of us that are traveling!!

Continue to Pray for child we took to hospital – since there’s no communication between here and there we don’t have word on how he’s doing. We’ll know today as we travel south and pass by there.

PRAISE – Meeting with the workers about salary increase went very well. Nothing was officially decided but proposals were made for the workers to think about in our absence. Everyone was pleased with proposals and with the fact that we gave them a little bonus in this month’s check.

With all our love,

Donna for all of us

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Adventure continues!

The Adventure continues!

This afternoon the neighbor dropped off an infant who is very sick. The mother has two sisters and an uncle here at Tchincombe. The child is critically ill so Stirling and Jeffrey left just now to take him 3 hours south which is the nearest hospital. Please PRAY.

PRAISE! Tutyiale, the workers, and all the cattle are safe back at Tchincombe!!

Donna for all of us!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Cattle rustling saga: The cattle have been recovered!!!!!!

PRAISE Cattle rustling saga: The cattle have been recovered!!!!!! In the last few days at least 4 thieves have been caught but apparently the armed thieves haven’t been caught –– there seems to be a pretty big ring working this area. Animals that are stolen are either killed and then sold as meat or are transported live to market. There are two trucks loading meat or cattle out at night. The question is who owns the trucks!? It seems that the police are taking the weekend off and will continue the investigation and apprehending of the other thieves on Monday – where is the logic in that?! It is the situation we live with!

Despite all our efforts it was the headman of a village to the west – west of where our guys were situated - who actually caught the thief – and on Tuesday! The thief came asking for a travel document for the “cattle given to me by my uncle”. Since the headmen didn’t know the guy he said he would have to see the cattle. When he saw that the cattle were marked with brands he immediately grabbed the thief, tied him up and took him to the police. It seems like the Lord was taking care of His cattle!

The cattle will stay at Tchimbolelo tonight (‘neighbor’ farm near main road). Tutyiale spent the morning collecting up the men he’d left watching roads then he had to turn around and go back to where the cattle are being kept tonight to take more men to help herd them back. There is concern that since the cattle will have to come back through the area where the armed thieves are operating that they might try to steal them again!! Again we ask you to PRAY for safety as the men travel home tomorrow with the cattle.

On Monday we must go to that village where the animals were caught and give a reward to the headman who helped catch the thieves – at least that is the expectation – he would like us to give him two head of cattle. PRAY for wisdom.

Sad news – PRAY for Kakinta and Mwatewa - we heard yesterday that their baby, Alexi, died in hospital.

We were supposed to leave on Monday to head down to SA but will not likely get away until Wednesday or Thursday! That’s sad for us as we will loose part of our time with the Joubert family – will still be able to visit but not for long as we would like before going on to the retreat!

PRAY for Tutyiale and his safety both in travel and health – he’s been going non-stop for a week. Pray too for Firmino who’s been holding down the fort here doing the work of 3!

Thanks for partnering with us in prayer!!

Donna for us!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Cattle rustling saga continues!

Cattle rustling saga continues! Stirling and Jeffrey came home about 10 PM. Tutyiale, our foremen, had tried to get the local police (60 miles away) to help go after the thieves but was told that they didn’t have enough trained police to go after the thieves. Stirling explained this to the police in Lubango (provincial police) who were not impressed with their local colleagues! So two ‘commandants’ (don’t know best translation – maybe police chiefs) came with Stirling to the local authorities and basically told them to get to work! In ironic fashion the police commandants organized the others and sent them off to look for the thieves along with Tutyiale and other staff from Tchincombe. The chiefs waited at the fuel pumps! Stir was in a quandary as to should he stay with the chiefs or go with others but thought he should stay with chiefs since he had brought them from town. In the end it was a good plan as they were able to find out some information about the thieves from the local villagers who came by to chat and greet them.

PRAISE - fuel arrived yesterday at the station so the Unimog will go today to get 1,700 liters. And Lord willing we’ll send them back on Friday for another load so as to have plenty of fuel for Jerry to keep bulldozing!

Thanks for praying – I was very relieved when Stir and Jeffrey got home! Continue to PRAY that the other men still looking will be safe and that the cattle will be retrieved and the thieves caught. The thieves seem to have a ring going and have been stealing cattle from all around this area.

Continue to PRAY for the 4 people who gave their hearts to the Lord this month – for their spiritual protection and growth!!!!

In Him,

Donna

Monday, July 21, 2008

Stir and I arrived last night at 9 PM.

Stir and I arrived last night at 9 PM. It’s always good to be home. Jeffrey, Jerry and Louise did a great job of holding house and home together. We did manage to get all things needed for Ag fair.

We are glad to say that the ‘new’ car came back with no problems – it’s got 350,000+ km so it’s just new to us not new :-}! It’s going to be a fixer upper cosmetically but the gearbox and engine are sound!

The farm is still in a bit of a mess in the sense that Tuciale and his team have yet to return from looking for the cattle. Firmino went with the Unimog yesterday after to take a child to hospital. So this morning there were no foremen on the farm!

Jerry’s gone to bull doze this morning while Stirling and Jeffrey have gone to look for the foremen and to see what the scoop is on fuel!

Please PRAY that the cattle will be recovered and that Alexi (one year old who’s sick) will respond to treatment – his parents name are Kakinta and Mwatewa.

PRAISE - A woman gave her heart to the Lord yesterday in church – even before the sermon was preached! She’s recently married one of the herdsmen – his name is Njitumalye – don’t know her name yet since we weren’t here for church yesterday! PRAY for her spiritual growth and protection.

In a weeks time we should be headed south for the 60th anniversary of stir’s parents. There’s tons to do to leave things in order – so PRAY for wisdom, strength and patience!

Together in Him,

Donna for us!

Friday, July 18, 2008

12 cows were stolen this morning

Hi! Stirling flew in this morning to Windhoek. We got an e-mail from Jeffrey (he stayed at Tchincombe with Latimers) saying that 12 cows were stolen this morning and being herded off north. The foremen are in pursuit. Pray for their safety and that they would catch the thieves and recover the cattle. It seems like the thieves must have been waiting for Stir to leave! We plan to leave Windhoek Saturday and arrive Tchincombe on Sunday. Donna

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

WOW – what a week!

WOW – what a week!

Monday, the circumcisions went well – 18 boys done – no complications! Lots of logistics to get set up but once set up things went very well.

Jerry & Louise, Daniel and Steve arrived on Monday night with Stirling. Jerry and Louise are doing well. It’s like they never left! Jerry was on the bulldozer Tuesday afternoon for a bit!

Daniel and Steve had a great week with the kids doing the soccer camp. It’s not the norm for girls to participate when the boys play soccer but for this camp a good number of girls participated – quite a new thing for here - Meghan was thrilled.

Tuesday, Steve and his team got away just after lunch for their return to Lubango so around the table we went from 16 to 9.

Wednesday the veterinary services for Ag fair came to TB test the 20 cows we are sending to the fair – all tested negative.

Thursday – I (Donna) took meat to town – planning to stay the day and return in the late afternoon to Tchincombe – only to find no fuel available! It seems there is not enough fuel because of the large number of machines (bulldozers, dump trucks, etc) that are working on rebuilding the roads! There are l-o-n-g lines where there is fuel. On Friday morning I got up and went to pumps at 5 AM and was THANKFULLY able to get fuel. PRAY that we can get enough FUEL in stock at Tchincombe so that while we are away in South Africa in August (Stirling’s parent’s 60th) Jerry will have the fuel he needs to keep bulldozing! Not to mention for the general needs of the farm. (I was able to leave town at 10:30 Friday am)

Friday Sheila, Sara (Sheila’s daughter and a pre-med student), Hannah (med student), and SIM colleague, Karen came for the weekend. We went from 9 to 13 around the table.

PRAISE – Tchincombe was donated a Land Rover!!!! The Kammers, German colleagues, are returning to Germany after 6 years in Angola. They have a Land Rover and their organization, CFI, has agreed to donate their Land Rover to Tchincombe to be used for the mechanic who will be coming out (Lawrence & Cynthia Fox). Continue to PRAY for their other support needs.

Sunday just after church – neighbor comes to tell us that one of our retired herdsman was found dead! He had gone to the neighboring farm to visit friends and find drink (moonshine). ‘Njalakambala was quite elderly – it seems that in his drunken state he got turned around and headed down the road (bush track) the wrong way and so walked way more than he should. It was quite clear from the tracks that he became quite agitated realizing he was lost - most likely he had a heart attack. PRAY for his family. His wife is quite elderly as well. PRAY for opportunity to speak of the hope we have in Christ! On Monday Firmino and Tuciale took the body back to the village where his family live.

Monday – I hitched a lift with our friend/colleague Karen to Windhoek in order to bring the Kammers/CFI Land Rover back to Angola! We are grateful to have had an uneventful and pleasant trip down!

Stirling couldn’t leave on Monday (too much to do!) but will fly down here tomorrow and then we’ll drive the Land Rover back together! I’ll have my husband to myself for 3 whole days :-}!

PRAY for the Foxes!

PRAY for our road trip back to Angola (Saturday or Sunday)

PRAY that we get enough fuel to leave the farm well supplied during August

PRAY for wisdom and strength to counsel and encourage at the farm

PRAY for Brent, Daniel and Steve who will go to Chiange to show the Jesus film this weekend – Chiange is where Pastor Jacob is starting a new outreach to the Ovangambwe.

THANKS for your faithfulness in prayer!!!

Donna