After 25 hours of travel we were relieved to arrive at the hotel, in Entebbe, around 1:30am Uganda time! We started the day with breakfast and exchanging our dollars for shillings. Moses, our long time friend and driver, arrived at the hotel to load up our luggage and we began the drive to Jinja. We stopped in Mukono to see Miriam, who is a sponsored student, and taking a course for Medical Lab at St. Elizabeth Medical School. It was so much fun to see her light up when we gave her the letter from her sponsor and when she introduced us to her best friend. We spent some time talking with her, encouraging her and praying over her and her friend before leaving. She has been part of the AH program for over six years now and what a joy to see the growth in her over these past 6 years! She is asking for prayers for her exams which begin next Monday.
The drive to Jinja went quicker than normal as traffic did not seem as bad as in past years. It is always fun seeing what boda drivers manage to carry on the back of their boda’s, (motorcycles) chickens and cows on the side of the street, people walking everywhere, little babies tied on their mothers and siblings backs and all the fields of tea bushes and sugar cane. Uganda and its people are beautiful and we are so grateful to be back.
Just before Jinja we stopped off to see another sponsored young man, who’s name we won’t mention for his protection. He is 18 years old and recently finished school to become a DJ. This has been his dream and it is definitely a gift of his. He spent some of his younger years on the streets of Jinja and our family met him for the first time when we were living in Uganda 7 years ago. During our visit last year, he shared he is now a follower of Jesus which was an answer to prayer! His family is all Muslim. His current circumstances are very hard. He was raised by his grandmother who also cared for many of his siblings. Recently, the family to his grandmothers late husband sold the property she was living on. She had no other choice but to go to her mothers village, which is looked down on in Uganda culture. She left the children with this young man and has had no contact with him. Our best guess is that she knows the children will not be able to stay with her in the village, so she has left him to care for them all. He is driven and desperate to begin working so he can feed and clothe them. Chris spent a long time with him during his last visit in which he shed many tears about his situation, but we also see courage and strength in him which can only be from God. He is already doing small MC jobs for weddings and functions for another DJ in Jinja. This well known DJ said he can get him more work if he has his own equipment. We are working out a plan to assist him with this so that he can provide for the five children he has suddenly become responsible for. Please pray over this new opportunity for him and that he will grow in his walk with Christ. He is attending a local church and taking the children with him, which is also a blessing as the grandmother is muslim and before she left they were attending muslim school and prayers. We trust God is weaving together a beautiful story for his life!
We finally arrived in Jinja, unloaded all our stuff and walked to get some dinner. Tomorrow we will drive to Soroti and then spend the afternoon and evening visiting many more children. Please pray for continued safety on the roads tomorrow and health and healing for our friend and driver Moses who has had some serious health issues lately.
Love, Sandy and Michelle