Tuesday, October 15, 2013

October 2013: ALL IN to TRANSFORM TANZANIA!!!!

Greetings from Mwanza, Tanzania!  I have now been here 4 months and 4 days, and in 6 weeks I will be back in the USA!  Looking forward to seeing all of you and catching up in person during the holidays!  You know that in my last newsletter I said, “Things move at so much more slowly a pace here so one day seems like two!” Not anymore! Now it is flying by!  Since my last newsletter I have been able to settle in, get some things accomplished, and really get my ministry started!!  

Unfortunately, I was pretty sick for most of July and August; no big surprise as ‘tummy troubles’ blossom into full-blown ‘who knows what’ so easily here.  To be honest, God’s grace and my own experience healed me!  The doctor said I had the “Tanzania Trio: typhoid, malaria, and UTI.” I haven’t had any of those before plus that’s what they tell everybody they have (so you will buy medicine).  But I took my meds and got sicker than ever—it took me a month get my system back in balance! Tanzania has some of the best probiotic yogurt kitchens in the world so between adjusted meds, probiotic capsules, papaya and yogurt, I got well—and I am still drinking my yogurt daily! I’m so thankful I didn’t have to make the expensive trip to Kenya to the gastroenterologist! 

super smart 12-14 year old boys
the precious 10-12 year old girls!
I have finally been able to start my Small Groups with the kids and we are all having a blast!!!  We have 57 total and 6 groups, separating boys and girls, pre-teens and teens.    Kids here go to school from 8-4 and have serious chores to do—cooking, hauling water, taking care of younger siblings, washing clothes, etc.  For a place with no organized kids’ sports, paid ‘lessons’ or ‘classes’ other than tutoring, these kids are super busy, but we are having good attendance in all the groups!  And we are having a great time!  Groups are on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and three on Saturday. I bring cake and Koolaid (keep it coming because they LOVE it!), we play a game acting out Bible characters, read a short lesson and pray for each other.  I am doing Joseph’s story with the boys and Esther’s story with the girls. It is going so well but I somehow hurt my back and that is now interfering with everything!  I pushed through for a week but it has not gotten any better so now I am having to take a few days rest!  I have had to cancel one group so far but hope not to have to cancel anymore!! I know it is a spiritual attack because God is really going to be able to use this time to make a difference in these kids’ lives!  Pray that the next six weeks I will be healthy and use this time to the fullest!  Pray that the kids and caregivers will make these groups a priority and ensure the kids come!  And especially pray that kids get saved!!!  I also have some kids that need individual counseling since they are having some struggles at home and at school—still looking for a time to fit that in, too!

kids and caregivers and me
On Wednesdays, I teach ladies Bible Study at the church. The class is not well-attended and it is discouraging, but I keep on showing up to teach except for the last two weeks I was out with my back.  Just recently I learned that many do not know how to read and write, don’t own Bibles, and are embarrassed to come! Mwanza may be the second largest city in Tanzania, but our neighborhood might as well be a village out in the bush!  Some of them don’t even speak Swahili, but only Sukuma, their tribal language But why didn’t anyone tell me that before now?  Ah, Africa!  Chronological Bible Storying is an awesome method for oral learners so I would like to start that with them, but it might have to wait until I get back from the USA.  Please pray that we do something meaningful with them in the next six weeks, something that they will attend so that they can learn God’s Word.  We will also have to have a translator from Swahili to Sukuma so pray for her or him, too! The picture below is of me with the ladies and kids the last time they got their monthly supplies from the ministry.  Those long beige things are bars of soap—strong stuff!

kids looking at the Swahili Picture Bible
On Saturdays, in addition to the small groups, I also work with all the kids at church.  We have from 50-100 kids who come to play games, pray, sing and read a Bible story from the Swahili picture Bible.  They love that Bible!  Many of them would rather look at it than play games while they wait for story time!  So cool!!

On Sunday mornings, I teach youth Sunday School; we have from 15 to 30; it is not always well-attended either but we keep trying!  Pray that the kids will come!! During the sermon, the kids go outside for Sunday School.  Since we have so many kids, we split them up into two groups. I teach the older ones since often there are 35-50 in each group!
teaching Sunday School
Pray for my Swahili as I teach!  Some days it’s good and some days it’s not!  It’s hard for the kids to pay attention when they can’t understand the teacher! We started with Creation and are now on Abraham.  We also have Swahili songs to go along with the lessons, like our song on the 6 main characteristics of God that we look for in every story, a creation song to the tune of “God is so Good,” “He’s Got the Whole World in His Hands” and their newest favorite, “Father Abraham.”  Of course they all have motions and THAT makes them all super fun to sing!

Thank you for your continuing support and prayers for us and know that we are praying for you, too!  I praise God for the faithfulness you have shown by praying for us!  And we are so blessed by those of who are continuing to support Transform Tanzania financially!  I simply would not be here without you and you are here with me in spirit!  So come see us IN PERSON!  Come for a visit to see how we are ALL IN to Transform Tanzania!! Much love, Kay & The Kids

For information on making tax-deductible donations to my ministry, Transform Tanzania, email me at kayintz@yahoo.com.  Like my “Transform Tanzania” Facebook page to see current updates and read past newsletters.  Follow me on Twitter: @kayintz and Instagram: kayintz

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