Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Brief Mubuyaeta Ministry Update

Goodbye 2010, Hello 2011

Every year is always packed with activity and changes, but 2010 had its fair share of events for the Mubuyaeta family. Elton and I began the year on maternity leave in the States for 6 months. On April 17, we welcomed Quincy Naleli to our family. We returned to Namibia in June 2010 with Quincy in tow. She is quite the popular kid around the village and around town. Everyone is always happy to see her. Now she is 9 months and full of energy.


In July, Quincy and I traveled to Windhoek to continue working on residency papers that I had applied for in May 2009. I am happy to report that in October they were finally approved for both Quincy and I giving us the freedom to live here for 2 years before we have to renew them. This is a HUGE improvement over the permits we were getting for 30/60/90 days.


In August, we moved into our newly built non-traditional traditional house in Mukisa Village to live with Elton's father's side of the family. It was built out of termite mud and wood poles with a metal sheet roof. What makes it non-traditional is the sheer size of it along with a built-in bathroom, complete with tub and a functioning toilet and also a kitchen sink. Most traditional houses would be without those luxuries. We are still working on obtaining running water and some form of power whether it be solar or electric. It also has 2 guest rooms for any travelers that wish to come visit us here.


Also in August, I started to suffer from problems which was a first diagnosed as hepatitis but turned out to be gallbladder problems. After reaching the point of hardly being able to eat anything, fat or otherwise, I finally had it removed in Windhoek hospital in December. Going through surgery in an African hospital is something I hope I never have to endure again. Fortunately, I am much improved but the experience has left me leery of the medical system here.


Since the beginning of 2011, both Elton and I have had malaria and have had numerous problems with the truck. I was hoping for a quiet beginning to this year...


Farewell to Children of Zion


After almost 3 years of service to Children of Zion Village and Mafuta Orphan Care Centre, I have resigned. Elton also has worked there since 2003 and will be leaving at the end of January. We will miss the kids and staff but we wish them God's blessing on their future endeavors. Elton has been appointed Vice Church Elder for the 2011 year at the Katima SDA church. Since this is an unpaid position, he also we be driving a taxi.


Some of our new projects:


Musanga Farm


I came to Namibia the first time in May 2007, I fell in love with the country and its people. When I prayed to God what I was supposed to do here, I received a very simple command of 3 words: Feed My Sheep. Not knowing if this was a literal command or a m ore figurative one, I went with a combination of both. As we've come to this time of transition when I am seeking God's direction I keep getting the same command: Feed My Sheep. We want to start farming soy beans and sunflowers with future expansions to add chickens and domestic projects like sewing and carpentry. Soybeans could be supplied to women and vulnerable children as a nutritious addition to their diet and don't require refrigeration. Sunflower seeds can be made into cooking oil



The Good Samaritan Centre: A HIV/AIDS Nursing Home/Hospice Facility


The Caprivi region where we live has been rated number one in Namibia with people who are infected. The government is caring for physical needs such as medication when they reach a certain stage of the illness and hospital care, but when they are discharged many have no place to go. Many times they may have a family that cares for them but is unable to provide the quality nutrition necessary for the medication to work properly. We hope to provide them with a temporary place to stay to get back on their feet, provide healthy food, education about their disease, and counseling how to cope with the future. This project will be in partnership with many of the local government ministries and foreign NGO's working in Namibia.


Mukisa Kindergarten

In July 2010, we opened a kindergarten for the children living in and around Mukisa Village. We have averaged 15-20 students per month age 3-6 years old. Elton's aunt, Cordelia, is the teacher and she is doing a wonderful job. The biggest challenge the school is facing at the moment is lack of space. The students are meeting in her house in the sitting room. When the weather is conducive they go outside. As you can imagine that amount of students in one cramped room is not ideal. We are praying for the funding to build a small school house near the edge of the village. The cost would be between $1,000-2,000 USD. They will also accept any school/craft supplies anyone is willing to send.


Final Messengers

There is a group of 8 guys from our church who formed a singing group called Final Messengers. Elton has been working with them to help them record a CD. They previously recorded 4 songs that are very popular on the local radio station. Last year they were invited to a number of the local churches for church services, special events and crusades. They hope in the future to raise enough support to be able to travel farther spreading the Gospel message through song.



Coming Home for a visit


Quincy and I will be coming home at the end of February 2011 for a few weeks. Elton unfortunately has to stay behind this trip. Pray for me as I fly more than 18 hours with a very wiggly 10 month old alone. We will be staying with my parents in Albany but making one or two trips to Rochester. If anyone would like me to speak about our new projects at church, bible study, youth group, etc. I'd be happy to do so.




Thursday, September 30, 2010

Finally Some House Photos

There are just a few but you can check them out on:

We are still working to get the outside finished before the rain comes which is hot on our heals.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Mukisa Security Force

Meet Buddy and Talula (aka Thug Dawg). They have joined Klepto and Kasper (Elton's dog who mostly lives with his great aunt but choses to grace us with his presence when he's hungry) as part of the Mukisa Security Force. They might not look too threatening now, but dogs are a huge part of keeping one's house secure here. Let's just hope they don't eat us out of house and home. This morning I realized they have learned Klepto's thieving ways when I found some of our neighbor's laundry outside my front door.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Photos still pending

As one of my dear friends has pointed out I haven't posted photos of the house yet. My apologies. Our internet is broken and of course since it is a two year old device no one has the disks to re-install it. So i only have what little internet access that my cellphone can provide.

but i will say we are enjoying being in the village despite the learning curve for me. One of the hardest things has been cooking on the fire. Today i discovered something that makes it all worth it. After my work is done i take advantage of the coals. Two words: coconut marshmellows.

Friday, August 20, 2010

In the house

We moved into our house tonight. It is still in need of a lot of work but the basic structure is done. It feels good to be home. Only wishing we had even a small amount of furniture or a toilet. I've already made a trip into the bush in the dark. But anyway these things will come over time. its home sweet home. We arrived too late tonight to take pics. It is pitch black. Pics to follow tomorrow.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Cuz

Q and I travelled to Windhoek last week to work on our residency permits. We stayed with Elton's sister so Q could hang with her cousins, Mabby (rt) and Julia (lt). When they first met Julia didnt realize Q was a real baby until she pinched her cheek and she started screaming. Julia spent the whole week telling me, "Its a baby!" like she was still surprised everytime she saw her. I guess they don't see a lot of babies like Q around here.

Friday, August 6, 2010

like a foolish man who built his house on sand

I know this scripture in Matthew 7 is talking about people that hear the words of Jesus and don't listen, but the words keep echoing in my head: like a foolish man who built his house on sand. I feel like that foolish man. As I've said before I know nothing about building houses especially traditional mud houses in Namibia.  Sometimes I feel like I've bit off more than I can chew.  Fortunately I am not building alone.  Elton is an excellent builder.  As with any kind of building project, everything costs more than we expected. The roof alone cost $1000 USD which was actually already at a great discount.  People here normally build with thatch but unfortunately I am terribly allergic.  We are struggling to finish the house properly.

As I've been recently reminded (thanks scott!), one of the reasons I was running from being a missionary in Africa was because I was scared of the very life I've just chosen.....this simple life living in the bush. Its amazing how God has eased me into this lifestyle.  First He got me to Africa and allowed me to fall in love with it (and my wonderful husband) so that when it came time to chose this more simple life I was more prepared.  We won't have electricity or running water.  We are even going to fail to put in a concrete floor I had wished for so we will have mud floors. (What is that going to be like when Quincy starts crawling?!)

Life just becomes more difficult when the baby is crying in the night and you have to light a candle to see what's the problem rather than just flip a switch.  Or when you need water, you have to go draw it from a bore hole this is way down the road instead of just turning a tap.  Or when you want to cook, you have to light a fire instead of just turning on the stove.  Or when you want to wash clothes, first to carry water then to scrub by hand.  The great thing about being human is our ability to adapt. I am learning how to do these things, but it takes so much time there is little time left for anything else.

These things I can learn to live with. What I'm really struggling with is this idea of going to the toilet in the bush especially at night. We bought a toilet at a really cheap price, but we are failing to put in a septic system which makes that toilet obsolete.  So off to the bush I will go.  I don't know how many grown up people you know that are still scared of the dark, but I am one of them.  And the darkness here isn't like in America.  There are no street lights or city glow to brighten the sky at night.  If the stars aren't shining or the moon is small, you can't see you hand in front of your face or the snake that is underneath your feet.  I think I just won't drink much before I go to bed.     

Another thing is I don't know how I'm going to manage is to cook daily over a wood fire.  I am trying but I manage to burn everything including myself. The bottom line is when you are camping cooking over a fire is kind of fun but when it is everyday life, it will get very tiresome. We can buy a simple gas stove with an oven for about N$1500 (about $200 USD) but right now it is also outside our budget.

One of the biggest rookie mistakes I've made in building this house was to ask for more windows.  The window frames are sort of expensive, but in my head I thought it was worth it.  Since we won't have electricity, why not use the sun to our best advantage by having more windows, right?  What I didn't know is that window frames are sold without glass and glass here is ridiculously expensive and somewhat difficult to get.  It is almost essential to have either glass or netting on your windows, not only to keep our malaria-ridden mosquitoes but also snakes and other critters. 

So I say all of this as a plea for help.  We are building this house on our own. The best thing is after it is build our daily living costs will be significantly reduced.  But we need help to finish some of these basic things. If we are especially blessed, we can add some of the more modern conveniences to make my life a bit more manageable. In the future, we are praying for the money for a generator or solar panel system both of which are about N$5000 or in our wildest dreams a transformer to be able to hook into the government power which begin at N$20,000.  As for water, they say sometime next year the town will be installing a public water line that will pass by our village.  Again, it will be affording the connection fee.  As for right now, we are praying for the money for a small water tank on a trailer approx. N$5000 that can be filled and parked next to the house.         

If anyone is willing to make a donation to help us to finish to build the house, you can mail a check to my parents or contact me personally for the address.  You won't receive a tax-deductible receipt. 

We will be moving into the house before the end of August with or without these things.  Pray for us and especially for my sanity as I struggle with so many changes at one time.  We know it is super expensive to come visit, but if you want to make the trip, we welcome any of you. In November, one of our friends who is finishing her peace corp contract is hoping to visit us.  Early next year, we expect a friend from the US and possibly a student group. Hopefully in the next year or two somehow Grandma, Grandpa and Auntie will manage to scrape together enough money to come visit Q in her natural habitat. 

Matthew 7:24-27 "Therefore everyone who hears these words
of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise
man who built his house on the rock. The rain
came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew
and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because
it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone
who hears these words of mine and does
not put them into practice is like a foolish man
who built his house on sand. The rain came
down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and
beat against that house, and it fell with a great
crash."