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welcome group

Malawi MapKen Hewett, WDA’s International Director, recently returned from leader training in Malawi.

We wanted to share his journal.

August 21

“We received an e-mail on Thursday night saying instead of going through Amsterdam and Nairobi, I would be going through London (with an 8 hour layover) and Johannesburg. Also, instead of leaving at 5:30 Friday afternoon, I would be leaving at 10:45 that night The 8-hour layover and the late departure meant I arrived in Lilongwe at noon on Sunday rather than at midnight on Saturday.

welcome group

I arrived in Lilongwe 30 hours after my flight left for London, but my suitcase didn’t make it. I waited around for the next flight from Johannesburg, but it wasn’t on that flight, either. After filling out all the paperwork, I made it to the hostel in time to have dinner and go to bed; then I went back to the airport the next morning and my suitcase arrived at noon. (Whew!)

I took an afternoon bus to Blantyre, then on to Lunzu, where I arrived at 9:30PM. I was really tired, so Paul said we would start the

seminar two hours late today. I really appreciated it because that gave me some time to rest before the teaching began.

I have enjoyed seeing the pastors again. They have all been through the basic training on disciple building, so I am giving them more advanced teaching.

Please be praying for wisdom and strength as I begin my hectic schedule here in Malawi. Ken

 

Two Days Later: August 22

welcome group
Pic – This is my welcome committee in the village.
I was able to coax some smiles after a while.

“On Thursday morning my interpreter, Paul and I hopped on a 15-seater bus headed for Golomoti Center. By the time we were loaded we had 28 men, women and children on board. Each stop some got off and others got on. The lady sitting next to me had a chicken on her lap, which is a usual sight in Africa.

We arrived at my ‘hotel’ at 3:00 and I checked in. I have a bed with a mosquito net and an attached bathroom, which was nice. However, there is no water in the toilet, sink or shower. One of the girls brought me a 5 gallon bucket of water.  So with the soap, washcloth and toilet paper I brought along, I’ll get by just fine. Betty and I have stayed in this kind of ‘hotel’ before.

There is supposed to be a restaurant here, but I haven’t found it and I’ve been all over the place. The owner brought me a piece of paper and a pencil and asked me to write down what I want and I’m trying to think of what would be safe. I picked up some water and tangerines in the small village, so with the peanutbutter I brought along, I’ll be fine.

Be praying for me as my second seminar begins tomorrow. This will be a little different than my usual seminars because I will be helping the pastors know how to teach their people to be strong in their Muslim community.

Thanks for your prayers and encouraging words.

Ken”

August 25

Report from Ken:

church last year
This is how the church in Lunzui looked last year. It was extremely hot, so they took the tarp off this year.

My church for the second seminar was built of sticks, just like the one for the first seminar. They weren’t made very well, so it was good there wasn’t a wolf (or windstorm) around or it would have all come tumbling down. The pastors in the first seminar were middle aged men who had been pastoring for quite a while. They had been through the basic seminar and they are teaching the Phase II material on Knowing God, which was translated for them by Paul, our associate staff in Malawi.. They only have one booklet for two people to share, so they are praying for finances to print more.

The group in Golomoti was much younger than the first group. They hadn’t been through the basic seminar on disciple building, so we met as long as possible each day, to pack all the information into those three days. On the first day I talked to them about children, young men and old men (from I John). They were really encouraged when we talked about them being the young men, in the prime of their lives with a life of ministry ahead of them. They really soaked it all up and now it will be Paul’s job to follow them up. He’s good at that, though. They were a fun group to work with.

We finish up tomorrow afternoon, then we’ll head to Monkey Bay. I’m feeling strong and the group has been understanding the material. Thanks for your prayers. It is difficult to find water here. Please be praying there will be more in Monkey Bay.

Ken

August 28

“In early 2012, a Women’s Bible Study from Fletcher, Oklahoma, decided they wanted a project to support in Africa. I had met a group of women from the town of Lunzu, when we previously had a seminar there and these women had said they wanted to help the widows and orphans of the Lunzu area. The Bible Study group in Oklahoma decided these women would make a good project, so they began supporting them. I bought a sewing machine for them and they used the support from the women of Oklahoma to buy thread, material and the ingredients to make bread.

ladies
Ladies of Lunzu

They have been selling the clothes and the bread to make money to buy rice and other staples for the older women who are caring for their orphaned grandchildren.

Before going back to Malawi this year I was able to raise $300 to buy them another treadle sewing machine. On Wednesday a man came to our seminar carrying a sewing machine on his back. The women were so excited! They ran home and got one of the dresses they had made and showed me how the machine worked. They were excited that they would be able to help even more women and children.

Thanks for praying for physical and spiritual strength. I’m doing great. Ken”

 

 

passing out food
Passing out food in a nearby village.

 

August 30

“It only took three hours to get from Golomoti Center to Monkey Bay. We rode in an open pickup that stopped wherever people were standing on the side of the road, and if you wanted to get off you just rapped on the top of the cab. We were constantly stopping and starting. I was fortunate enough to get a seat up by the driver with another guy, but Paul and my interpreter were stuck in back. They were able to find a seat on a bag of rice though, so they didn’t have to try to stand up.

I felt like I had died and gone to heaven when we reached my room in Monkey Bay. There was hot and cold water, electricity, air conditioning, and I had a woman named Blessing who cooked for me. I had stopped eating the food in the hotel in Golomoti because it was so greasy. Everything was swimming in grease.

The Monkey Bay group was a mix of young pastors and some who had been pastors for about fifteen years. On Tuesday we had a really lively discussion that lasted quite a while. I asked them if there was anything in the Church in Malawi that bothered them and they said it was the shamanism and witchcraft that was creeping into the churches. They were standing up and speaking and one could hardly wait until the other finished to begin sharing his experiences. They were hugging each other and praying for one another and I finally turned it over to Paul so he could talk to them in their own language. He was really speaking powerfully as he told them the answer to this problem was discipleship, helping their people grow in Christlike character. They all agreed with him and said they wanted to kidnap me so I would stay and help them. I don’t think Betty would like that, though.

Monkey Bay
Monkey Bay

I catch the bus for Lilongwe tomorrow morning at 5:30. It’s quite a long trip, so I have to travel on Friday even though my flight isn’t until Saturday. The schedule is for me to arrive home at 8:30 Sunday night, if none of my flights are changed. Thanks for praying for this trip. I’m coming home encouraged by what the Lord is doing in Malawi, despite the shamanism and witchcraft that is creeping in. Ken”

Monkey Bay is a beautiful town on the shores of Lake Malawi. It is a tourist town, so there are lots of places Blessing can find food I can eat and there was plenty of bottled water.

 

I just saw Ken today as he arrived home Sept 2. Thanks for praying for Ken and all of our international trainers.

group 1I’ve just returned from Tanzania, where I had a great time teaching three seminars. I taught and Pastor Dickson, from Arusha, did the interpreting. Dickson is a great guy who really loves the Lord, and I enjoyed being with him. Our first seminar was in Moshi, a decent sized town by African standards. The second was in Maji Ya Chai (meaning ‘water like tea’), and the third was in Arusha, the second largest town in Tanzania.

group 2

We had a group of twenty pastors and church leaders in Moshi. They were really an enthusiastic group with a lot of good questions. They’re looking forward to getting the Phase II Bible Studies translated into Swahili so they can use it with their people. We’re going to begin that right away. Dickson knows a man who will translate for $3/page, and we’re gathering funds to translate all of the Bible Studies. I met with the man while we were in Arusha, and he seems to be a quality guy who will do a good job.

group 3We also had a group of twenty three at the seminar in Maji Ya Chai. Most of the men in the seminars are young, in the beginning stages of their ministries. The seminars open their eyes to helping their people grow in Christ-like character and they also draw the pastors into a tightly knit group with the same goals.

The seminar in Arusha was held at Dickson’s church. There were twenty six pastors in this seminar and on Tuesday one of the men who had been in my seminar in ‘97 stood up and told the pastors the teaching had made a huge impact on his life and his ministry during these last 15 years. He encouraged them to listen carefully, take good notes, and put it into practice.

warraTwo of our staff men have died during the past two years and I was able to meet with their wives to encourage them and find out what their needs are.

I’ll be home for a few weeks, to gather my strength, then the next trip is in May. Thanks so much for your prayers and financial support, which is making a huge difference in these pastors lives.

 

editors note: This is the Hewetts Newsletter

for more information about Ken and Betty Hewett go to their staff page

Ken Hewett and Dickson

highwayAs soon as I finished teaching the first seminar we hopped on a bus and traveled to Maji Ya Chai.  That means ‘Water Like Tea’ in Swahili.  It’s a good name because the water is as brown as tea and the peoples’ teeth are stained the same color.  You can always tell if someone is from this area, or if there is a stranger in their midst.

I spent quite a bit of time talking to Greggory MFinanga, a layman who  attended the seminar. Greggory is a really huge guy who is in a wheelchair that’s like a tricycle.  The pedals are up at shoulder height and he propels himself around using his arms (which are as big as my thighs). It would be hard enough to get around on paved roads, I don’t know how he does it in all this dirt.

Greggory was excited to find out that he has been discipling young men without even knowing it!  He has a couple of small groups that meet regularly and he said they are growing in Christ-like character.  Greggory can read English, so I gave him a CD with our Phase II Bible Studies on it.   He is looking forward to teaching the Bible Studies and  putting all his other material together in an organized way.

Charles’ pastors’ group has been a fun group to teach.  I could spend the rest of my life in this area.  They are so needy and eager to learn and they have really caught the vision.  The problem is to get our Phase II Bible Studies translated into Swahili.  Dickson knows a man who can do the translating for just $3 a page.  I hope to meet with him when we’re in Arusha for the next seminar.  Be praying with me that we can get the finances to help these pastors out.

Off to Arusha and the third seminar….

Ken

Obama and the Pope Mural
Obama and the Pope Mural
Ken Hewett and Dickson
Ken and Dickson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other Posts in this Series:

Tanzania Diary -Ken Hewett I

Tanzania Diary – Ken Hewett II

Arusha Tanzania

At 2:00 on Saturday I’ll be on a plane, headed for Detroit and my final destination of Kilimanjaro Airport in Tanzania.  Pastor Nnko, our Associate staff in Tanzania for almost twenty years, was a prolific church planter before he died in 2012.  Nnko began almost 25 churches and each one is pastored by one of his disciples.  He named the churches all ‘Grace Evangelical Church’ because he thought that was a cool name!

Dickson Lazier is one of his disciples.  Dickson pastors the church in Arusha, which was built by a group of men from our church here in Fayetteville.  I’ll be teaching three seminars for Nnko’s disciples since they are like sheep without a shepherd since he died.  I hope to re-focus their vision on helping their people to grow in Christ-like character.

Please be praying for Dickson and Pastor Charles Sengasu as they coordinate the seminars and for health and strength for me.

Thanks, Ken

Dickson's Church
Dickson’s Church
Arusha Tanzania
Arusha Tanzania