Tag Archives: Kenya

The latest Terri & Sherri award goes to Tony Campolo

I update this post whenever a new “evangelical Christian” officially caves and comes out publicly supporting the LGBTQX agenda.  

simpsons-terri-sherri.jpgIn a move that should have surprised no one, Tony Campolo has come out in favor of “same-sex marriage” after much prayer/reflection/blah/blah/blah.  It reminds me of an episode of The Simpsons where the twins Terri and Sherri are speaking to Lisa:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day you got a pool is the same day we realized we liked you?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

For Tony Campolo and other people bailing on biblical truths, it goes like this:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day God told me that he changed his rules on marriage it made me more popular?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

By most accounts Campolo has been in the pro-LGBTQX camp for a long time, but he decided that now was the optimum time to make it official.  It is the “squishy evangelical Christian” version of 30 pieces of silver.

There were already lots of things wrong with Campolo’s theology.  This is just an official nail in the coffin.  His post describes what I had heard already, namely that his wife has guided his perverse, hateful theology.  What a shameful, pathetic excuse for a man and a husband.

—–

I’m running this again in (dis)honor of Andy Stanley caving to the LGBTQX agenda right when it profited him the most.  Via Megachurch pastor rejects his father’s bigotry: Jesus would want you to bake a gay wedding cake:

There is not consensus in this room when it comes to same-sex attraction; there is not consensus in this room when it comes to gay marriage.

Those are the weasel words of a wimpy and/or false teacher who will go full pro-LGBTQX in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .

Gee, just because one group disagrees with something we can’t know the truth? Even Stanley doesn’t use that standard in any of his other quotes.

If you really love people you will tell them the truth. The Bible couldn’t be more clear. Bible-believing Christians and even two out of the three types of pro-gay people* (religious or not) can see these truths:

  • 100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior describe it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms.
  • 100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman.
  • 100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children).
  • 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions of any kind. There are no exceptions for “committed” relationships.
  • 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to LGBT couples parenting children.

Having said that, I believe that Christians should support and encourage those who are fighting same-sex attraction. And no one needs to grandstand on the issue before getting to the Good News of the cross.

Here are some more weasel words from Stanley. Yes, people claiming the name of Christ should do less of those things, but isn’t it convenient when he throws all Christians under the bus to curry favor with the LGBTQX extremists?

If all the Christians for just one year, would quit looking at porn, would quit smoking weed, would quit having premarital sex, would quit committing adultery, would pay their taxes, and every church just foster one kid — in one year our nation would feel different. . .

Yeah, and if all the false teachers shut up for a year it would feel different as well.

It is illuminating how the non-Christians commenting there agree with Stanley. Go figure. Churchgoers who support “same-sex marriage” have nearly identical views to the world. It shows who their real father is.

1 John 2:15-16 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.

Jude 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

Finally, as Erick Erickson pointed out, note in the article how Andy’s father’s church had to be protected from the LGBTQX people and not the other way around.

—–

simpsons-terri-sherri.jpgIn a move that should have surprised no one, Rob Bell has come out in favor of “same-sex marriage.”  It reminds me of an episode of The Simpsons where the twins Terri and Sherri are speaking to Lisa:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day you got a pool is the same day we realized we liked you?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

For Rob Bell and other people bailing on biblical truths, it goes like this:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day God told me that he changed his rules on marriage it made me more popular?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

The link has the video of him explaining his “new” views (Poison Control recommends watching it if you are out of Syrup of Ipecac) where he not-so-subtly undermined the word of God and said how we need to get with the world’s changes, because God is doing something new blah blah blah.  He says we should work on the “real” problems, as if the problem of saving people from sin isn’t real.

Once again someone who mocks what God said in his word wants us to believe that God is telling him all his new ideas and changes.  Right.  I hope that all the youth groups that showed his videos are repenting.

hear from God

Here’s a graph I made for Rob (the inspiration came from the World’s Best Sunday School Teacher)::

bell2

The liberal “church” has changed in the same ways culture has: Pro-legalized abortion, anti-parental notification laws, pro-gay marriage, pro-handing out condoms to kids, etc.

Think about this: Non-believers created the anti-abortion Hippocratic Oath and it took Satan 2,500 years to convince pagans to discard it.  Then it took another 15 minutes for theological Liberals to go pro-abortion.

Isn’t it amazing?  What great timing!  The liberal church realized it had been wrong on these important topics for nearly two thousand years, and came to that conclusion at virtually the same time as the secular culture.  That makes the world like them more, I suppose.

They also decided it was too embarrassing to believe in miracles, the authority of scripture, the exclusivity of Jesus, etc.  Or did that come first?

Thankfully, many churches in the West aren’t buying it and most of the churches outside the West aren’t either.  The first time I was in Kenya one of the full-time missionaries, a doctor from England, kept saying how the Kenyans were really disappointed in the U.S. when they heard about churches supporting gay “marriages.”   It wasn’t like they were thinking, “Gee, those brilliant Westerners know everything, perhaps we should follow them.”  It was more like, “Whoa, what are they thinking?!”

* The three general types of pro-gay theology people:

1. “The Bible says homosexuality is wrong but it isn’t the word of God.” (Obviously non-Christians)

2. “The Bible says it is wrong but God changed his mind and is only telling the theological Left.” (Only about 10 things wrong with that.)

3. “The Bible is the word of God but you are just misunderstanding it” (Uh, no, not really.)

Rob Bell, Andy Stanley, Terri and Sherri from The Simpsons, and perfect timing

I’m running this again in (dis)honor of Andy Stanley caving to the LGBTQX agenda right when it profited him the most.  Via Megachurch pastor rejects his father’s bigotry: Jesus would want you to bake a gay wedding cake:

There is not consensus in this room when it comes to same-sex attraction; there is not consensus in this room when it comes to gay marriage.

Those are the weasel words of a wimpy and/or false teacher who will go full pro-LGBTQX in 3 . . . 2 . . . 1 . . .

Gee, just because one group disagrees with something we can’t know the truth? Even Stanley doesn’t use that standard in any of his other quotes.

If you really love people you will tell them the truth. The Bible couldn’t be more clear. Bible-believing Christians and even two out of the three types of pro-gay people* (religious or not) can see these truths:

  • 100% of the verses addressing homosexual behavior describe it as sin in the clearest and strongest possible terms.
  • 100% of the verses referring to God’s ideal for marriage involve one man and one woman.
  • 100% of the verses referencing parenting involve moms and dads with unique roles (or at least a set of male and female parents guiding the children).
  • 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to homosexual behavior in a positive or even benign way or even hint at the acceptability of homosexual unions of any kind. There are no exceptions for “committed” relationships.
  • 0% of 31,173 Bible verses refer to LGBT couples parenting children.

Having said that, I believe that Christians should support and encourage those who are fighting same-sex attraction. And no one needs to grandstand on the issue before getting to the Good News of the cross.

Here are some more weasel words from Stanley. Yes, people claiming the name of Christ should do less of those things, but isn’t it convenient when he throws all Christians under the bus to curry favor with the LGBTQX extremists?

If all the Christians for just one year, would quit looking at porn, would quit smoking weed, would quit having premarital sex, would quit committing adultery, would pay their taxes, and every church just foster one kid — in one year our nation would feel different. . .

Yeah, and if all the false teachers shut up for a year it would feel different as well.

It is illuminating how the non-Christians commenting there agree with Stanley. Go figure. Churchgoers who support “same-sex marriage” have nearly identical views to the world. It shows who their real father is.

1 John 2:15-16 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.

Jude 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

Finally, as Erick Erickson pointed out, note in the article how Andy’s father’s church had to be protected from the LGBTQX people and not the other way around.

—–

simpsons-terri-sherri.jpgIn a move that should have surprised no one, Rob Bell has come out in favor of “same-sex marriage.”  It reminds me of an episode of The Simpsons where the twins Terri and Sherri are speaking to Lisa:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day you got a pool is the same day we realized we liked you?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

For Rob Bell and other people bailing on biblical truths, it goes like this:

Isn’t it amazing that the same day God told me that he changed his rules on marriage it made me more popular?  The timing works out great, don’t you think?

The link has the video of him explaining his “new” views (Poison Control recommends watching it if you are out of Syrup of Ipecac) where he not-so-subtly undermined the word of God and said how we need to get with the world’s changes, because God is doing something new blah blah blah.  He says we should work on the “real” problems, as if the problem of saving people from sin isn’t real.

Once again someone who mocks what God said in his word wants us to believe that God is telling him all his new ideas and changes.  Right.  I hope that all the youth groups that showed his videos are repenting.

hear from God

Here’s a graph I made for Rob (the inspiration came from the World’s Best Sunday School Teacher)::

bell2

The liberal “church” has changed in the same ways culture has: Pro-legalized abortion, anti-parental notification laws, pro-gay marriage, pro-handing out condoms to kids, etc.

Think about this: Non-believers created the anti-abortion Hippocratic Oath and it took Satan 2,500 years to convince pagans to discard it.  Then it took another 15 minutes for theological Liberals to go pro-abortion.

Isn’t it amazing?  What great timing!  The liberal church realized it had been wrong on these important topics for nearly two thousand years, and came to that conclusion at virtually the same time as the secular culture.  That makes the world like them more, I suppose.

They also decided it was too embarrassing to believe in miracles, the authority of scripture, the exclusivity of Jesus, etc.  Or did that come first?

Thankfully, many churches in the West aren’t buying it and most of the churches outside the West aren’t either.  The first time I was in Kenya one of the full-time missionaries, a doctor from England, kept saying how the Kenyans were really disappointed in the U.S. when they heard about churches supporting gay “marriages.”   It wasn’t like they were thinking, “Gee, those brilliant Westerners know everything, perhaps we should follow them.”  It was more like, “Whoa, what are they thinking?!”

* The three general types of pro-gay theology people:

1. “The Bible says homosexuality is wrong but it isn’t the word of God.” (Obviously non-Christians)

2. “The Bible says it is wrong but God changed his mind and is only telling the theological Left.” (Only about 10 things wrong with that.)

3. “The Bible is the word of God but you are just misunderstanding it” (Uh, no, not really.)

Good pro-life news from Kenya

Abortion is the worst export from the West.  Thankfully, many countries are resisting this evil.  I have a real heart for Kenya after five mission trips and numerous dear friends there, so I was glad to see this: Kenya Pro-Lifers Defeat Western Effort to Expand Abortion.

When Kenyans voted on a new constitution in 2010, a massive publicity campaign – heavily funded by the Obama administration – assured voters it would not legalize abortion. In fact, “Life begins at conception” is in the constitution.

But the Constitution also allowed abortion in certain circumstances. Pro-lifers warned there would be more to come.

Abortion proponents, including those from the United States and Europe, drafted a set of policies for the Kenyan Ministry of Health that would have imposed abortion on the Kenyan medical system. The policies were rejected this week, according to a source close to the effort. Pro-lifers now want Kenyan legislators to denounce the attempt to expand abortion through the Ministry of Health.

What is truly despicable is how the Left is so pro-abortion that they borrowed money from our grandchildren to try to increase abortions in Kenya.

During the referendum for Kenya’s constitution, the Obama administration spent $18 million and directed U.S. personnel, including Peace Corp volunteers, to campaign for it. President Obama would visit Kenya, it was promised, if they passed the Constitution but he never did.

That’s what you should expect from a political party that is so pro-abortion that they want to increase abortions by removing restrictions and requiring taxpayer-funded abortions.  From the Democrats’ platform:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right.

If you voted for Obama and other Democrats then you are part of the problem.  Please reconsider your views.  

Parts of the Pachyderm

A favorite updated for your reading pleasure.  If you haven’t encountered the “parts of the elephant” argument yet, you probably will.  Even some people who claim the name of Christ use it to bolster their “all paths lead to God” mistake.

 —

IMG_0098

Greg Koukl of Stand to Reason has an excellent piece called the Trouble with the Elephant.

The ancient fable of the blind men and the elephant is often used to illustrate the fact that every faith represents just one part of the larger truth about God. However, the attempt is doomed before it gets started.

In the story, multiple blind men feel different parts of an elephant and describe it in different ways.  Someone who is not blind then points out the truth to them.

The typical application of the story is that religious pluralism is true – i.e., we’re worshiping the same God in different ways.

A good question to ask anyone who repeats this parable is, “Where do you fit into the story?”  If he is one of the blind men, then why would he have anything to offer you?  If he claims to be the person with sight, then what are his qualifications that he understands this world and you don’t?

Note that the blind men are describing different parts of the elephant, but it is still an elephant.  But if one religion says God is personal and another says He is impersonal, then they can’t both be right.  You can’t be an elephant and not an elephant.  I wrote more on the irreconcilable differences in the essential truth claims of religions in Religious Pluralism is Intellectually Bankrupt.

In a sense, the whole story is self refuting.  While the principle message is that we can only know a certain piece about God, the message itself claims to have the big picture.

It also has a rather odd premise: The “real” religion would be to follow every religion.  That way you’d have the whole elephant.

The only way the parable would work is if the elephant described itself to the blind people – sort of the way the God reveals himself to us in the Bible.  As Koukl says:

If everyone truly is blind, then no one can know if he or anyone else is mistaken.  Only someone who knows the whole truth can identify another on the fringes of it.  In this story, only the king can do that–no one else.

The most ironic turn of all is that the parable of the six blind men and the elephant, to a great degree, is an accurate picture of reality.  It’s just been misapplied.

We are like blind men, fumbling around in the world searching for answers to life’s deepest questions.  From time to time, we seem to stumble upon some things that are true, but we’re often confused and mistaken, just as the blind men were.

How do I know this?  Because the King has spoken.  He is above, instructing us, advising us of our mistakes, and correcting our error.  The real question is:  Will we listen?

Remember that if the elephant illustration is true, then Christianity is false.  The Bible teaches 100+ times that Jesus is the only way to salvation.  This is an argument that no Christian should use.

False teacher hypocrisy for Memorial Day

False teacher Chuck Currie just can’t kick his hypocritical race baiting.  See What’s On Right Wing Talk Radio? Bigoted Paranoia

Evangelicals, Mainline Christians and Roman Catholics have repeatedly condemned those who question the president’s Christian faith for partisan political reasons

I am now convinced that Chuck has a template with this fallacy already typed in.  Just because some people in those groups hold that view, he pretends that all do. Sure, Chuck.

And look here how Obama’s former UCC minister notes that church wasn’t the Obama’s “thing” and how he isn’t even sure Obama is a Christian.  Think about that: Obama’s multiple-decade UCC minister said those things.  And if you can’t trust a UCC minister, who can you . . . oh, wait, bad example — Chuck’s a UCC “minister!”

We can expect opponents of the president this election – big and small – to attempt to exploit racial divisions and to paint President Obama as something “other” than fully as American.

Uh, maybe that is because Obama himself claimed to be born in Kenya?  I don’t think he was born there.  I think he’s a liar, like Chuck, who will say anything to advanced his cause.

Consider the new racially charged film financed by right-wing billionaire Joe Ricketts that suggests that the president has a Kenyan, not American, world-view.

Looks like Chuck, along with the rest of the mainstream media, hasn’t read Obama’s writings (at least those that he didn’t have sealed out of his paranoia).

These campaigns against President Obama are driven by fear, hatred and racism – let’s be honest.

Oh, good, Chuck switched over to honesty mode!  Here’s some real honesty: Chuck is dishonest and the biggest racist of all, favoring taxpayer-funded abortions that will increase the 3x rate of black abortions to whites.

Roundup

UK midwives protest ruling forcing them to perform abortions — this is getting more and more common.  Religious freedom: You’re doin’ it wrong.  The Obama administration is forcing religious organizations to pay for birth control, some of which are abortifacients.  This is unconscionable.  At least the Supreme Court got one thing right as far as the hiring practices of religious groups.

A summary of Dr. Laura’s Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands — this is just the intro — be sure to read the entire post.

Dr. Laura Schlessinger has written another book that deserves a place on the best seller list with six of her other books, such as Ten Stupid Things Women Do to Mess Up Their Lives and Ten Stupid Things Men Do to Mess Up Their Lives. The Proper Care and Feeding of Husbands, from this unmarried man’s perspective, is an excellent manual for women on how to get want they want from men and marriage and, generally, how to be happy. Dr. Laura makes a number of important, practical points, based on her experience in private practice, from advising her radio callers, and from literally hundreds of letters and emails she received from men and women while she was writing the book.

Barack Obama fought the Born Alive Infant Protection Act, which protected infants who survived abortions from being murdered, but the media calls Rick Santorum the extremist?!

Peer-reviewed paper in medical journal challenges Darwinian evolution — Wait, that can’t be right!  Everyone knows that there is no such thing as that.

A new article by Dr. Joseph Kuhn of the Department of Surgery at Baylor University Medical Center, appearing in the peer-reviewed journal Baylor University Medical Center Proceedings, poses a number of challenges to both chemical and biological evolution. Titled “Dissecting Darwinism,” the paper begins by recounting some of the arguments raised during the Texas State Board of Education debate that challenged chemical and biological evolution. Those challenges include:

1. Limitations of the chemical origin of life data to explain the origin of DNA
2. Limitations of mutation and natural selection theories to address the irreducible complexity of the cell
3. Limitations of transitional species data to account for the multitude of changes involved in the transition.

Why do people hate Tim Tebow? Why do people want Tim Tebow to fail? — It is interesting watching the haters get so riled up about Tim Tebow.  Why wouldn’t feminists want a guy like Tebow, who would be faithful to them, have their long-term best interests at heart, not want to take away their purity, not risk them having to get a disease, an abortion or to be a single parent?  One pro-abortion group tried to raise funds by asking people to donate money for each touchdown pass Tebow makes, so they could somehow profit from his success.  He is similar to Sarah Palin in that his life and story mock the pro-abortion theme that we need to kill the unborn if they aren’t perfect or wanted.

Your tax dollars at work: The administration of the most pro-abortion President ever thought that taxpayer-funded abortions in the U.S. weren’t enough.  They needed to increase abortions in Kenya as well and hired surrogates to spread their message.  It stills sickens me to hear alleged pro-lifers rationalize their vote for Obama.

Stan does his usual excellent work in examining this comment by William Lane Craig:

The counterfactuals of creaturely freedom which confront Him are outside His control. [God] has to play with the hand He has been dealt. — William Lane Craig

Craig is really good but isn’t perfect.  That was a truly odd comment of him to make, but when you peel back the layers it is actually consistent with his worldview.  Whether it is Arminianism or Molinism, they leave the final say to humans on many issues.

MLK, Jr believed homosexuals could –and should– change — Oh noes — what will the fake Christians do with that fact? Oh, they’ll just say he would have changed his mind, just like Jesse went from pro-life to pro-abortion.

Hope Companions

One of our favorite ministries in Kenya is Hope Companions.  The program helps AIDS orphans not only survive but thrive by giving them skills and helping them start small businesses — sort of a “Junior Achievement finds Jesus” program.  We saw this first hand during our last to trips to Kenya and were so inspired.  These orphans not only become able to provide for themselves but they help their siblings and even other orphans.

Here are some stories about orphans who have benefited from this program as told by Jerri Savuto, a missionary in Kenya.

I do want to share about my two days with Halima and Reegan of the Hope Companions Program.  Whenever we have the opportunity to be with the staff and teens of Hope Companions we are filled with hope for their lives, their communities and this nation.  The Hope Companions Program is the way to help the poor to grow and bloom and not become dependent.  Their successes speak so loudly of the love of God, the incredible work of Reegan, Halima and their staff, what hard work and commitment can do in the lives of the poor and how much hope there is for this world.  Thank you Rev. Greg Jenks for your vision, amazing ability to raise funds and ministry to the glory of God.

On Tuesday November 1st, I joined Halima and Josephine, Hope Companion staff, to visit some of the teens and attend a meeting of two groups, Imani Kagwiria and Imani Kaithe.  I was so impressed with the relationship between Halima and Josephine and the teens and between the teens themselves.  We first visited two homes to take pictures of the youth with animals as requested by Rev.  Jenks.  We visited Doris, whose land is so small she must keep her goats at the home of her Hope Companions mentor, Monica Mauta.  Her goat had recently given birth to twins for which everyone was thankful as Doris will give the baby goats, when weaned, to two other Hope Companion families.  She has a goat because she received it through the Hope Companions Program.  Doris is a successful farmer and raises the goats for milk.  Her joy was infectious and I felt like singing I was so thankful.

We then visited Doreen.  She and her siblings have been living with her grandmother in a tiny, mud house. Recently her grandmother had decided the children would move.  Doreen has been working to fortify the old house she and her siblings will be moving to and building a new, small kitchen.  She had bought many goats and like Doris, one of her goats had just had twins and thus would benefit two other Hope Companion families.  Their first animals came from the program.

After the group meeting we visited Anita and took a picture of her with one of the rabbits she grows to sell.  It was exciting to see these teens being so successful in raising goats, rabbits, chickens and/or cattle.  God’s goodness never fails!

The meeting with the two groups was held in a church up the most horrendous, amazing road I think I have been on in Kenya and that is saying something.  There were at least 25 youth and their mentors at the meeting.  They had been meeting before we arrived and then Halima shared with them and gave me the opportunity to meet them and share with them.  Halima was so gracious and loving and so incredibly encouraging.  One of the groups has educated 11 of their 20 group members this year.  That is astounding but they have a very hard working mentor who is known both in their community and in Maua and was thus able to negotiate with the trainers/mentors of the youth to take an additional youth for a small amount of money.  One of the young men who shared with us was trained to be a mechanic and for just $10 additional he was taught to drive and has his license.  As we left I was filled to the brim with new hope for the future of Kenya and for the future of these young people who are being empowered to work hard and take care of their families.

On Wednesday, November 8th, I accompanied Reegan and Josephine to Tharaka North to visit 5 Hope Companion teens and their families.  We were only able to visit 4 teens as the road was so muddy in one area we had to turn around and come home. What a day we had with those 4 families.

When we arrived in the area we met Peter, the Social Worker employed by Hope Companions to work in the Tharaka area.  Tharaka is about 2 hours from Maua.  The first household we visited was headed by 17 year old Ronald who is a total orphan.  When his parents died he was left with two young sisters, Mariam and Mercy, and an ailing grandmother.  Though he had to drop out of school immediately to support his family he is a wonderful farmer and has taught himself to fix mobile phones and radios.  He shared that he makes about 300 Ksh daily ($2. 75 – $3.00) fixing the phones and radios which supports his sisters in school and his grandmother.  He proudly took us to his farm and showed us how he is growing green grams, cassava, maize and beans.  When asked what his goals were he immediately answered that he intended to provide support and education to his sisters until they were able to care for themselves and to provide food and medicine for his sick grandmother.

Ronald is growing green grams between the maize and he said that if the rain continued the green grams would be ready the end of this month.  He felt he could pick 2 bags (90 kilograms each) of green grams and each bag would sell for 30,000 Ksh ($275 – $300).  As we were ready to leave a boy of about 9 or 10 years old appeared asking for his food.  When we asked Ronald who he was, he told us he was a complete orphan who was mentally challenged and lived with a very old grandmother who could not care for him.  Thus he comes daily to eat a meal with Ronald and his family.  They shared what they had with this young, very needy boy.  It is so amazing to see others give out of their poverty while we give out of our affluence.

Ronald and all the Hope Companions we visited shared that members of their group came and helped them plant, weed and harvest the crops.  Ronald had been at a member’s shamba (farm) the day before helping her.  The groups become family and help each other in so many ways along with becoming the teens’ supportive community.

Our next stop was to visit 18 year old Mercy.  She, too, is a total orphan and the oldest of 3 children – she has a brother 17 and one 13.  When her parents died she and her brother’s lived with her elderly grandmother but there was not enough food for the four of them.  Though Mercy was only about 9 years old she went to live with a family and become a house helper.  She shared that she believed it would be better than the current situation she was in and she could send her brothers and grandmother either her earnings or some extra food weekly.  However, she was mistreated by the family she went to work for and found the situation intolerable and was forced to return to her grandmother’s home after many months.  She then pleaded with her uncle and was allowed to come and stay on the compound in a tiny, dilapidated home.  While living there she joined a Hope Companions Group and was helped in many ways.  She was given some chickens to raise and she now has many.  She planted a kitchen garden to provide fresh vegetables for her uncle and her grandmother and brothers.  She was even able to rent land and has planted crops on the land.  She is clearly a hard worker and it was so wonderful to see how proud she was of the work she did.  We walked quite a distance in deep mud to reach her rented shamba and see all that she is growing.

When asked how things were living with her uncle and family, she lowered her head and stated something to the effect that she is surviving.  When asked about her Hope Companions group she lifted her head and with a huge smile shared that they are her family and supporters and they work together for the better of each other.  When asked if she was thinking of getting married she firmly stated she would not marry until both her brothers had completed school and were on their own.

The third person we visited was Caroline.  We found her working in her shamba, weeding and what a lot of work she had done that day.  She too is a total orphan and has two sisters to support.  A young widowed aunt came to live with her and she supports her also.  Along with growing crops, Caroline has cows.  She received a calf from the Hope Companions and from that has earned money to buy a second and third cow and seed for crops.  I found Caroline so alive and thankful I didn’t want to leave her presence.  These young people are not afraid to work very hard and are literally thankful for every opportunity, everything that comes into their lives.  We all have so much to learn from them.

Our final visit of the day was to Godfrey, a 19 year old with two younger sisters, Mercy and Mariam, and an elderly grandmother.  Godfrey was clearly a hard worker who has a cow, goats, chickens and a pig.  Godfrey received a calf from the Hope Companions and has slowly but surely added the goats, chickens and pig as he has made money from the cow, then the other animals and his crops.  The seeds for planting originally came from the Hope Companions group.  He is sending both his sisters to school and when he talked about his grandmother I was so impressed.  He stated that his grandmother was so important to his family because she had such wonderful stories she told them at night.  None of these homes have electricity or running water so after working in the shamba all day and feeding the animals, being able to sit and hear stories was a great joy to Godfrey and his sisters.  When he talked about his grandmother she looked so proud and happy.

With each family or Hope Companion teen we talked together, prayed together and marveled at their joy, their smiles, the pride they had in their work and their ability to care for their siblings, grandmothers and other family members.   Each teen’s goal was to see that their siblings are educated beyond what they were and have a good start in life.  It is amazing how selfless they are – not like typical Kenyan or US teens.

Donation information here (item 7).