Seminary

Report from our last trip to the Transkei

Being lazy today and reposting an email I received from a colleague whom recently traveled to the Transkei with a couple whom visited the ranch. Was planning on doing my own writeup, but this pretty much said it all……..

Wow, I have been here over two weeks and it is flying by! Joyce has been with me and now she is already back home!

There have been amazing things happening,which seems to be pretty normal around here!

We have been traveling with another couple from Great Falls, Montana and showing them the sights, sounds, smells and mostly the needs of Africa.

We spent 4 days in the Transkei with them and helped them distribute over 500 pounds of blankets, bibles, school supplies and other needed items in three villages. Robert and Valerie really felt God leading them to bring as much as possible and He showed them exactly where they were to go!

They, like lots of folks who come over, really wondered why God was leading them on this trip. But, they had faith that He would show them why when they got here. And did He ever!!

We have been praying for the last year for a village called Mtinde. This village is quite a distance from the town of Lusikisiki and so is isolated from much help. There was a soup club there up till last year and Mama Nomakia has been trying to feed the hungry orphan children there out of her subsistence! There was a pre school she was running but had to close it because of lack of support.

We have been hoping for an answer to help her, and that is why Rufus wanted to take some blankets and other needed items to Mtinde.

Of course, when word got out we had “stuff”, children appeared immediately!

When Robert and Valerie saw these children, God overwhelmed them and they asked what it would take to resurrect the soup club. When we told them how economical it is, Robert said,”This one is mine!”. I will never forget that day! God rained down on us with Joy, and the children sang song after song as they rejoiced in the blessings and the news that they would be able to come once again for nourishment and education in Mtinde.

But what followed impressed me the most. The next morning we went to Lusikisiki and battled the craziness to buy a propane tank, a stove top, kettles, spoons and groceries to get the club up and running. And, there is no Wall Mart or one stop shopping.. it is wild in each store with lines backed up 3/4 of the way in the aisles waiting to be checked out. About 500,000 people walk, take taxis or hitchhike to Lusikisiki to shop and it is not a big town!

I loved that Robert and Valerie didn’t wait to get back to Montana or discuss how the logistics work… they jumped in with both feet and said lets do this thing! They have made a long term commitment to Mama Nomakia and these children. No turning back! They are arranging to set up a JoJo, which is a rain water collection tank, so that Mtinde can have drinking water. They also want to set up a shelter outside for the pre school classes to give them shade and rain protection.

The cool thing is that Robert and Valerie found what God wanted from them and that was exciting to see!  There have been many others stories on this trip which I will share later.

“This is amazing grace” is a newer worship song. I love one of the lines that says “He makes the orphan a son and daughter”. The orphans of Mtinde now have a chance to see God’s amazing plan of adoption!

Just yesterday Rufus and I met with a pastor from Capetown who served as a pastor and missionary in the Transkei for 8 years. Because of funding, they left in 2007.

We are now working with their church and another church in Stellenburg, South Africa to address the long term needs for the mission and how we can develop relationships with more South Africa churches and US churches becoming involved. We believe that we need a full time presence in Lusikisiki and Bambisana if these communities are to be changed with not only provision but true discipleship.

This Friday I meet with the prnicipal of the Jehovah Shalom mission school in Alexandria. We are working to bring short term teachers and teachers aides through Mission Builders International. I am very excited to see where this goes.

I will round out the day with a meeting with board members of Jehovah Jireh Haven( JJH­)  as we continue to develop relationships and a working plan to bring support to the 100 children there. We have some donors and we are developing a website, logo and brochures to give a much needed boost to bring more sponsors to JJH.

I love South Africa, even with the challenges, because God is at work here. These are wonderful people who need the message of God’s love and grace and I am thankful for people like Robert and Valerie, the 9 people that were also just here from Montana and all the others who are on their way to help, even when they don’t understand why. It is fun to see the surprises waiting here for them.

As I always say, I would love to see you come over as well. I believe Africa needs you, but you will also find you need Africa.

Please continue to pray for good health, safe roads and great encounters as the adventure continues.

Thank you for serving with us! It is such a privilege  to be able to come and it is only through friends like you!

Brad and Joyce

Brad Rauch

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