This country is beautiful. It is very tropical, with banana, mango, and papaya trees growing everywhere. Everything here is GREEN, except the dirt-- and it is very red.
Today was a day to tour the facilities in Kigali and Kayonza and meet some of the people in Rwanda involved with Africa New Life Ministries. Most of us on this June mission trip are first-timers to Rwanda except for Katie, her husband Ryan, her sister Hannah, and Hannah's husband Zack. Katie is our team leader. Katie is a PA I worked with in Moscow.
We toured the 1st school started by Africa New Life Ministries. The New Life Christian Academy in Kayonza is very impressive, and is one of the top schools in the country of Rwanda. The students there are amazing. I was humbled by their faith. Many of these students are orphans and live at the school full time. We had lunch with the group of children sponsored by a Baptist church in Idaho. We had fun with them, singing and watching some pretty funny dancing....mostly by Zack, our team's dentist. Zack & Hannah, Katie and their parents Bruce & Carmen made a home visit with the young man they sponsor. They brought the family a month's supply of food, and a goat! We could not let the goat ride on the bus with us humans, so the poor animal was tied to the back of a bicycle for delivery! And he did not like it one little bit. Arden managed to capture this on the photos here.
Tomorrow, Arden & I are going to visit the 2 children in Bugesera that we sponsor. Tune in for update and more photos!
If you are interested in reading more details about our mission and the people we see in clinic and their stories, go to medinrwanda.blogspot.com. This is a blog posted by Katie Fisher, our team leader.
I have found the people in Rwanda to be very friendly, they smile all the time! Twenty years ago in 1994, in a span of 3 months, 80% of the population of Bugesera was killed in a mass genocide. There are still many people here who bear the scars of this horrific event. Even today, they remain strong in their faith in God. Everywhere we look, we see clear evidence that in just two decades, this country has made tremendous strides towards healing, forgiveness, and rebuilding a society free from prejudice.
Day 2, Saturday in Kigali, Rwanda
Brenda & Arden Arrington
We woke to a cool breezy, morning with rain clouds in the sky.
Our first stop of the day was the Ntarama National Genocide Memorial. This was tough. No pictures allowed inside the church, and with good reason.
Almost all of the people in our group sponsor children for Africa New Life Ministries here in Rwanda. Even medical missions like ours are structured around home visits to meet your sponsored children. Today we met the two children that we sponsor in Bugesara where we will be doing our clinic Monday-Thursday.
This was a marvelous day for us both.
Day 3, Sunday
The two-hour long service at Africa New Life Church was unforgettable. The praise team was made up of 8 musicians and 7 outstanding vocalists. We have never seen anything like it. It was beautiful, uplifting music,
After church we had lunch at the original Hotel Rwanda, which has been renamed. Lunch was great and the hotel is beautiful.
Day 4, Monday FIRST DAY OF CLINIC
For more information on Special Medical Cases go to medinrwanda.blogspot.com