First notes and photos from Kenya

One of the many views of RVA

With the pastor at Karuna Community Chapel, Nairobi

At Karuna Community Chapel, Nairobi

People walking home from church


On the way to Kijabe

One view out the car window driving to Kijabe

Working with the worship band at RVA

Singing with the kids at Titchie Swot – the elementary school at RVA

Rugby and volcanoes

We may have finally found a way to connect to post a blog! Communication is hard here.

We got in on Saturday and have been ridiculously busy ever since. It’s been really fun to see God fill in the time, and we are learning a lot.

The flight from London was nearly 7000 miles. How can we sum up first impressions? It’s incredibly beautiful here, but then there are shacks all along the road, with this backdrop of unbelievable mountains and flowers. Driving is crazy, holding on the whole time, donkeys and cows in the roads, and police checkpoints where the police carry AK-47s. So many people, so much pollution, such staggering natural beauty that is at the same time so harsh. There is a drought in the valley now, and many are starving. You look down there and see IDP camps (internally displaced people) housing people in tents made of fertilizer sacks who fled their homes to avoid being killed in the election a year and a half ago – it devolved into a tribal war between the Kikuyu and the Luo tribes when the outcome was disputed. There are gorgeous mountains behind them – actually volcanoes. It’s hard to get your mind around it.

We are now in Kijabe, about 30 miles from Nairobi at the Rift Valley Academy, part of Africa Inland Mission. It’s a boarding school that serves K-12 missionary kids, and also some local Kenyans, and there are about 500 students here, the majority of which are in high school. It feels very Western, a lot like a cross between a college campus and a really nice camp.

I’ve been helping with the choir, doing voice lessons, singing at chapels, doing kids’ music, giving various clinics (last night I did a workshop with the worship band), and basically being useful wherever I can. Nathan’s also been helping out with their IT department. As we said, communication is so difficult here, and they were happy to have another guy thinking about solutions.

Last Sunday I sang at Karuna Community Chapel. Nairobi Chapel planted this “small” off-shoot church, and they now meet in a huge tent not far from Kijabe. They have two services and the tent seats about 500 – pretty amazing. Apparently they don’t get severe weather here, so they don’t spend the money on buildings. I had a wonderful time with them, and really enjoyed their praise band. The whole congregation was dancing – you don’t get that in the States! The sermon was about marriage and my favorite quote was, “Marriage is like a dual carriageway (a divided highway) – there is no stopping or turning around, and the next roundabout is death!!” Hope that inspires all you single people out there. 🙂

Tonight I am speaking at Koinonia which is a youth event, and tomorrow I am giving a concert. Saturday our hosts are taking us to an animal orphanage where we’ll get to play with baby elephants (!!!) and we’ll go to Blackrock, the school’s rugby tournament – rugby is all the rage here. Sunday I’ll be leading worship here at RVA, and we will go to Little Lambs, an AIDS orphans’ day school – we will sing with the kids and take them the clothing we brought with us from the clothing drive. On Monday we head to the coast. Hopefully we’ll get to update this more often, but it’s been pretty amazing so far. We want to tell you more!

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