On Sunday, the Lord rested and today so did we. We met for breakfast at the hotel at 7:00 then departed for Muko at 8:00 chauffeured by our trustworthy and reliable driver, Christopher. From Muko, three pairs of our team along with ACT staff went to three different churches. Tim and Vanessa attended All Saints Church of Uganda in the village. The service started an hour later than scheduled and lasted for about 2 and a half hours once it got started. Generous was the guest homilist and gave a sermon on giving. Sue and Diana rode to the Ikamiro Church of Uganda along with ACT staff members. They were happy to see the robes donated by the First Presbyterian Church of Holt (Michigan). A photo of the robes is attached. Suzanne and Dick, along with ACT staff, attended the Ugandan Martyrs Church in the village. They arrived 10 minutes before the scheduled time but were told by a nun who greeted them that the service would start later. She invited them to her home and proceeded to put out a breakfast spread on her table—remember we had already had breakfast at the hotel. We were hospitable and had some tea and a half a slice of bread while engaging in very spirited conversation about Rotary and ACT. Sister is a math teacher in the parish school and will be attending our training sessions on early childhood and youth development. So the time was not all in vain. Four representatives of the concert orchestra played a tune at each of the three churches this morning. The service was also joyous and lasted about 2 hours and 45 minutes.
After returning from church, Dick had the opportunity to visit his and Donna’s orphan, Elisa Niyonsaba. Elisa lives with his married adult sister and her husband in a house at the top of the mountain facing Muko village. The walk to the house is on a very steep, narrow, and dusty path that is highly irregular with roots, rocks, and ruts along its entire length. The trial is a little over 2 kilometers in length (about 1.5 miles) and was even more tedious coming down than going up. A photo of Dick’s shoes is attached with one cleaned off and the other not to illustrate just how dusty the trial was. Elisa and his family were most grateful for the gifts that Dick brought for them. His 96 year-old great-grandmother was present and was especially grateful for ACT supporting Elisa’s education.
Later in the afternoon, Howard Biryomuriwe, ACT Music Manager, led the orchestra in a concert for the team and other local people. This was followed later by a music camp-ending performance of the animated rendition of the traditional Rukiga dance that includes jumping, expressive arm movements, and chanting. This high energy performance was genuinely enjoyed by all.
Tomorrow we will be training the field people in Agricultural practices and the Muko Empowerment Program people in handcraft marketing. The week is full of training activities in all the subject matter areas represented by our team. As they say in show business, “stay tuned.”