I have spent the past two days in the southwestern region of Uganda, mostly in and around the town of Ibanda. Pastor Dan Schneider and the congregation at Immanuel Lutheran in Brookfield, Wisconsin have built 5 churches there (three that I got to see firsthand!) They are interested in building a school to serve the community as well. Currently, details are being worked on that will allow them to work through Hearts and Hope, in conjunction with the Lutheran Church in Uganda to make that a reality, maybe even before the 2017 school year!
Ibanda is a six-hour drive from Kampala on relatively good roads. Bishop-elect Charles Bameka claims this is because of the high number of politicians from the area! J I spent three hours meeting with LCU leadership and local leaders to talk about the continued alignment between the LCU and Hearts and Hope. It was exciting to confirm that we are prepped to do more great things, now in a new-to-Hearts and Hope area!
Wednesday began with a lovely breakfast with Violet, Peter (the H&H Education Coordinator) and Nicholas (the H&H accountant). We travelled to Holy Trinity Lutheran Church where I met with more leaders and discussed ways to help pastors and other church leaders in the region provide a quality education for their children. It is not an easy problem to solve as it is a huge area and attendance at the newly-proposed school will not be logistically possible for many of them. It was a productive meeting and ended with great information to take the next steps.
From there the entire group travelled two hours to a Kabale Primary School where a Lutheran congregation is currently meeting. We had lunch with them and made the journey back to town to visit two more Lutheran churches. All had nursery schools that were in session – something that always brings a smile to my face! Seeing the importance of education always serves as a great reminder about why Hearts and Hope is doing what we are doing!
The day was long and we didn’t begin the long trip back to Kampala until around 6:30 pm. The lack of fast-food restaurants in Uganda quickly became evident as we stopped in three different places along the way, hoping to find something for dinner! What I would have given for even a QT about 9:30 last night! It was a fascinating discussion as I tried to explain the food available at such an establishment to Violet. Eventually we found beef samosas and chipss at a “takeaway” restaurant and shared a meal on the road.
We got back to the Hotel Africana around 12:30. Today will be spent meeting with some of the staff and doing some supply shopping in Kampala. I am giddy, waiting on the team to arrive! Please continue to pray for this group and their families!