Pastor Hirbo is taking this Muslim territory of Marsabit for God. And he is doing it on foot. It is really hard to explain Marsabit. I have been to the Turkana and the Samburu regions but nothing is like Marsabit. It is economically disadvantaged, dry, dusty with very little water and the infra-structure is very poor. First, just getting to Marsabit is a challenge. Unless you fly. The only other option is a 12 hour drive from Nairobi with 8 hours being off-road. The road is not paved and very bumpy – we were air-borne on the bus more than once. In Marsabit there are no paved roads. Only dusty roads.
The GOA church here is different – and the people of Marsabit have noticed. First let me tell you Pastor Hirbo went to the church Friday night with other church members and prayed all night for our team. And they prayed all night last night for us. I don’t think Pastor Hirbo sleeps. He was with us all day in the medical camps after praying all night. By the time he came to meet us at 8:00am he had already preached in the church. And last night we worshipped with them Sammy and David singing the Pray for Peace in Kenya song and the shouting the congregation does to the Lord and the songs they sing sounds like a church of a thousand people. Pastor Hirbo has grown the church to 125 and 50 youths plus planted 4 more churches under trees. Bishop David always tells us God uses ordinary men to do extraordinary things. God used many people who were aware of God’s purpose to reach the 6 unreached tribes of Marsabit. And he used a very special little girl named Rebecca. Rebecca is one of the five children Pastor took to Nairobi on the top of a lorry truck because they were sick Rebecca being very sick. The children all went to Merciful Redemer. I remember reading Mama John’s emails about how sick the children were. I met Rebecca in May when we took the children to the park to see the animals. We knew then Rebecca was sick. I saw her again in June when we went and tested all of the children for HIV/AIDs. Five were positive including Rebecca – in the third phase of the disease with large blisters on her face.
As most know Rebecca was one of the first children at Beat the Drum – Kathi’s House. Pastor John and his wife Mary are the people God selected to build Beat the Drum and care for children with HIV/AIDS. David Gruber helped raise the funds for Kathi’s House in memory of his wife who died in June. Milele group with our friend Christian did a concert to raise funds to build Kathi’s House. Because of everyone’s efforts and partnering together Rebecca and all the children are thriving, happy and in school. They know the Lord and are growing spiritually.
Pastor Hirbo said it was when people saw what the GOA church has done for Rebecca that GOA began to have a break-through in this area. And today I met Rebecca’s father. He is avery old man. He “gave” me Rebecca and told me I was responsible for and should help her with her wedding. He also is leaving GOA the two acres of land.
We did medical camps in three locations. We divided into three groups and left staff at each site. The third site was a very rural area and we could only get the bus 1.5 Kilometers away. We walked the medications and nets in down a hill and up a hill over many rocks.
We did another medical camp today bringing to over 1,000 patiets seen and treated. And to Pastor’ Hirbo’s suprise people want to test for HIV/AIDS. 185 people tested and we had to turn people away as we did not have enough to test them all. There is a low prevelance rate of 2.5%. That could mean more people are dying from malaria in this area.
S.N. brought 1,500 to the fields for a peace tournament almost all Muslims. Three Muslim boys accepted Christ.
The medical camp and VCT/AIDS counselling was in the park today under trees. They wanted to test even though it was in public.
This is a place we all want to come back to. There is much work to be done and the people of Marsabit responded to the offering of help..
Blesed to serve with the peace team in Kenya, Connie
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