Wednesday, August 27, 2008

South Africa

We returned to South Africa and rented a car because many people warned us that independent budget travel was not safe. The roads were wonderful and the rates were reasonable and this turned out to be a very comfortable mode of travel for a change. We did a bit of sight seeing, visiting old friends and meeting new ones.

We began in the Drakenburg Mountains and then journeyed down to the coast of South Africa to Cape Town. We had the mountains on our right and the coast on our left. It felt like Europe or the California coast until you drove through a black township/settlement area. The reality of the economic and racial divide was glaringly obvious.

We enjoyed a couple of days of hiking, visiting Table Mountain and the Cape of Good Hope, seeing whales, seals, a penguin colony, and a walk on the beach.

We connected with Rev. Tobie, the Superintendent and Administrative Assistant to the Bishop of The United Methodist Church South Africa Provisional Annual Conference. Rev. Tobie invited Kathy to preach at the Mfeluni UMC which is currently worshiping in the community center in Mfeluni townships. We experienced dynamic worship, a great click talker interpreter, and a fabulous lunch. We wish we had more time to spend with them.

Rev. Stewart Mgobongo and Kathy at Mfeluni UMC.
Future hopeful sight of Mfeluni UMC.

We then traveled to Kgmotso a rural village where Katie, a Peace Corp Volunteer we befriended earlier is posted. She asked us to visit and share our skills with the community. Danny spoke to teachers and parents about epilepsy, diabetes, and high blood pressure. Kathy spoke to the 6 & 7th grade after school girl's club about delaying sex and their goals for the future. It was a great day.

Danny with his interpreter.

The Kgmotso Girl's Club

Kathy and our host Katie.

Where in the world are Danny and Kathy Dickriede?

We will be working in West Africa. We plan to visit former contacts in Freetown, Sierra Leone before we join the staff of the Mercy Hospital and the Child Rescue Center (CRC) in Bo for the month of September. Both of these ministries are the work of Floris UMC in the Virginia Annual Conference. A great book to read about Sierra Leone is Along Way Gone by Ishmael Beah.

Websites for the work of Floris UMC are . . .

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Love of Christ Ministries Orphanage

More photos of the The Love of Christ Ministries Orphanage!

Check out their web site of the TLC Orphanage in South Africa, it is linked to the top left of our blog, and see for yourself the great and AMAZING work that they are doing! We loved this place!

Babies getting ready for their morning snack.

Morning snacks ready for babies.

There is a real system here!

Now I know how my mom felt with twins, I had four to keep happy!

All the babies in their pajamas ready for evening bottles and bed!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Jordan and Israel

Well, not exactly on the African continent! We stepped away from our Rosemark year and funds and went out of Africa. We met up with Murphy, our son, in Amman, Jordan where Danny's brother and nephew are working. We used their home as a base for travel to Jerusalem, Petra, Jerash, Umm Qays, and the Dead Sea. We visited the visited the holy sites of Gadara on the Sea of Galilee (Matthew 8:28-32), Bethany on the Jordan river (Matthew 3), Mt Nebo where Moses looked into the Promised Land (Deuteronomy 34).

We also spent a weekend in Jerusalem walking the hot uneven rocks and ramparts of the Old City. We walked the Via Dolorosa and the stations of the cross which led us to the Church Of the Holy Sepulchre/ Calvary. We began a walk of Holy Thursday at the Garden of Gethsemane into the Dung Gate. We visited the Western Wall, the holy site for the Jewish people with good views of the Dome of the Rock, the Muslim holy place.

We also arrange a spectacular day trip to the ruins of Petra, rightly named to be one of the New Seven Wonders of the World! A long hot day passed viewing the amazing rock carvings of the Nabataeans people from 2200 years ago.

We head back to Africa mid August, rested, relaxed, and ready for the last three months of our Rosemark year. Stay tuned for more exciting work and adventure.