Newsletter (June 30, 2011)

Dear all, We got an extra public holiday on Monday, as the nation’s second president died and was buried. We had seven days of mourning last week. Because of that, many activities in the country had to be postponed. One of our church members was supposed to have her graduation ceremony last week, after five postponements dating back to October last year. Unfortunately it had to be postponed yet again to next week. Many weddings have had to be postponed as well. On Monday most people just watched the funeral from televisions, as it was held in Lusaka. Death and how it should be dealt with is very different from our perspectives and we are still trying to understand it all.

All the Chinese doctors will be returning to China in mid-July. Dr Fan is going back as well. He came to say goodbye last Saturday and we had a meal together in the Chinese restaurant. There is a new hospital in Lusaka which is funded by the Chinese government and so most of the next batch of Chinese doctors will be posted there. Ndola will have fewer Chinese doctors, perhaps only six, down from eight this year.

Our worker has been away for more than a week. His mother is sick and his relatives in the village called him to go back to see her. He came from the north-western corner of Zambia, very near the border with Angola. The bus journey one way takes two days, and the bus he took had a breakdown, so he was stuck somewhere for another day. Because he is not around, we are very busy trying to do some work in the garden. Zara is particularly busy watering the vegetables. However she has pain in her lower right ribs, so it is not easy for her to do all of this. We went to the clinic the other day and the doctor suspected her of having costochondritis, some inflammation of the costal cartilage. It is particularly painful getting in and out of the car, or getting up from and into the bed. Please pray for her so that this problem will be healed very soon.

We are having a long weekend coming up. Monday is Heroes’ Day and Tuesday Unity Day. They always fall on the first Monday and Tuesday of July. During this time Ndola hosts an annual International Trade Fair and many people, including us, will flock there to visit and buy things. This year our church has rented a stall and we have given them some gospel tracts and booklets which we brought from New Zealand and Hong Kong. We will be there to help as well. Please pray for good outreach opportunities as we as a church try to witness and spread the gospel message to people. Hope you all are well. With Christian love.

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