Greetings to you all!!!!!!!
News! News! News!
1st - my news. For all of you who were waiting for it to happen - well it happened! Earlier this week Timothy and I were at the John Koffi Asmuth United Methodist Church for the dedication of their new school. Now this was important for several reasons. Boswell UMC has donated hymnals to this church because they were singing from four different hymnals because they didn't have enough of any one hymal for their congregation. Wouldn't that be a terrible problem, to have a congregation so large that you didn't have enough hymnals? Well, Boswell helped them out and they are now ready to sing any song in the Methodist Hymnal and all on the same page! Also, Brookston UMC donated choir robes and now they are all the same! How awesome! No more mix and match! The dedication was for a new 3 story Elementary/Jr Hi school in Westpoint. Westpoint is the poorest area in town to live. And they saying is "that nothing good can come from Westpoint". Well now, thanks to the Illinois Great River Conference the possibility exists by having the first school in Westpoint available to Wespoint children! Why do we care? First, we have 4 grandchildren attending that school and church, 2 of our son's helped with the carpentry and masonry in the construction, and my former houseboy (Sam) was the School Board Presdient and in charge of the construction process! I am so very proud of all of them.
Now, to the news - Timothy and I, plus Bishop Innis and the District Superintendent Jerry Kulah, were walking from the church to the school. While doing so, Bishop appointed me as the Counseling Elder for our church, Johnson G. Nyan UMC. So - now you can all breathe, I am back to work again! However, this time, I don't have to do all the preaching, visiting, etc. Of course, in exchange for all this grace, I don't draw a salary either! Doesn't God have a wonderful sense of humor!
Also, Boswell UMC donated hymnals and Brookston UMC donated robes to our church as well. They arrived just in time for the District UMW Conference last November and the church (and the women particularly) were so excited they had robes when the choir of our church was called on to sing. There was a mass choir made up of about 6 different churches. Our church would have been the only one without robes but for this wonderful gift. In addition there were enough hymnals for the 300+ women in attendence at the Conference. This is not a one day affair but lasts for 5 days. Our women were the hosts for this district conference at our church.
2nd - The Houseman Community well is coming right along. All the culverts were made with 2 extra - just in case. Yesterday, the boys started digging and were able to reach 4 1/2 culverts deep. It will be 8 culverts deep or about 25 feet. They reached the water table at about 3 1/2 culverts deep. That is great since this is the heighth of dry season. If we have that much water we will know that the well will not likely run dry. The community is so excited and some of the more able bodied men/boys were here to help. The digging is done by hand with a shovel that resembles 1/2 of a post hole digger. The dirt/mud is put in a bucket and lifted out. There is only room for 1 person digging and they almost have to flatten themselves against the side of the well to raise and lower the bucket. Tomorrow Jonathon will rent a water pump to keep the water out of the well while they continue to dig. Once they have reached the desired depth, they will then put gravel and sand in the bottom to filter the water. The pump will be set in concrete and sealed to the well, the water will be chlorinated and we will be in business. I have been taking pictures and hope to find some way to post them on the blog so you will have a better idea of what it will look like. The members of our community have stopped by several times to tell us Thank You! However, the thanks goes to Rev. Larry Houseman for taking on the fundraising for this project and all the congregations, friends and family who have helped support it. It will be wonderful to have clean drinking water available within 100 feet of our home and our neighbors.
3rd - The land issue for Timothy has still not been resolved. He reached his attorney on Friday and will meet with him again of Tuesday to have the complaint taken out of the Circuit Court and to the Superior Count for resolution.
He is still very concerned but is much more calm now that he has confidence in his attoney and the higher court.
4th. Christiana (our daughter) has had her ups and downs with her battle with cervical cancer. She was finally able to receive her first round of chemo treatments last week. She had to have 3 pints of blood to raise her blood levels before beginning the chemo. The Dr. was not even happy with that but went ahead to see how she would respond. If we are not able to keep her blood level up (it was 18%) he will discontinue the treatments. She received 4 different chemo drugs. We had to search Monrovia for one of them that was not available, but one pharmacy ordered it for us at the cost of over $400.00 USD. But - we have it and that is what is important!
She had the normal reactions to chemo but seems to be holding her own. Yesterday she even surprised us by making our bed and sweeping our room for us! She is ever tired but seems a little stronger each day. Please continue praying for her.
Another blood test was taken Friday and we will receive the results tomorrow. Wednesday we will travel back down to the Firestone Hospital to meet with her Dr. and learn what his prognosis is. We are also taking another daughter (Patient) with us for a check-up to make sure that she is ok.
General news and observations:
All our grandchildren here at the house with us are now in school. It gets very quiet during the day but is a welcome relief. Koyo (15) and Sawsee (3) are the only grandsons here. Granddaughters: Mary (14), Faith (10), Dena (7) and Candy Girl (8), plus daughter Patient are the others in school. As you can see - women rule! We have been working on this little bit by little bit since we arrived, and have finally achieved this goal.
Rolf is adjusting well and it well taken care of by the Grandchildren. One has spoiled him rotten by feeding him his food by hand. Now he expects everything to be handfed to him. He will just lay and look at you with "Well, here I am, do you expect me to move?" He loves to ride in the car, stick his head out the window and let his ears blow out from his head. People are always doing double takes when they see him. If we are not able to take him with us, he will meet us as we turn into our road and ride in the car to the house. Now Sawsee is doing the same thing. We have to stop and pick them up to ride that short distance. But they are both happy.
Today traffic was moving very slowly on the way home from church. We found out that a steer ( they look like Bramah bulls with the horns and hump behind their heads) was wandering down the street with a long rope around it's head. A car had driven onto the rope and stopped the steer. The driver finally was able to get off the rope, but the steer continued down the middle of the road for some time. Eventually, he got off the side of the road and the traffic was able to pass. I am not sure where he was going and no one was with him.
Another day, I was waiting in the car for Jeff while he was at the mechanics - this is an open air shop along the road. Next door is an open air wooden furniture shop, on down are other shops and/or businesses. Quietly walking through all this was another steer meandering his way to the area called "cow factory" where the slaughtering takes place and the butcher shops are located. We often stop along the way at the little carts with roasted cow meat. They take fresh meat pieces and roast it it in the carts. You can pick your piece of meat, have it sliced, and have onions sliced with it and seasoned. A serving will cost about $1.50 and is very delicious.
Another day we saw a man holding a full size mattress on the back of a motorcycle traveling down the road. Granted, they are made from foam rubber and are about 6" thick. They are doubled over and tied so they are portable. However, it makes for a very interesting ride in the traffic.
The Christmas tree that was put up 2 days before Christmas on the Blvd. was finally taken down this week. However, the tree and decorations are still up at the church. Maybe they will be down in time for Easter.
Yesterday I made French Toast for breakfast. The children loved it. 1 1/2 dozen eggs and 2 loaves of bread managed to feed us all. I hope to get a large skillet and fix pancakes one day. I did the French toast in a large dutch oven type pan over a charcoal fire.. Very interesting experence.
Life is good, God is good and all is well!
Love and hugs from the Kumeh clan.