The title is good bye in chokwe. This is our last blog from our epic adventure in the west of the great African continent. Angola was a country we knew so little about. When it was first brought to our attention I had to look it up in a world atlas. We will have spent 13 days in the country by the time our flight leaves Luanda on Friday evening and we all feel we have just touched the surface.
Before I finish the final point to the Angola blog with a summary there are 2 things worthy of note for today.
The first is the fact that Casanova is in danger of having his nickname changed. This morning Ruth Singleton came across a rat in the dining room area. Jack was handed a large stick by Tiago and proceeded to batter it’s brains out. We feel Jack the Ripper might be in order!
The second point was our experience by some of the young guys in Saurimo who play in the church bands. We all met together for a jamming session for the afternoon. We sang in different languages and we come from different backgrounds and experiences but our trust is in the same God. He has changed our lives and we have so much to sing about. They taught us “open the eyes of my heart Lord” and we taught them “Lord I lift your name on high”.
There have been so many highlights over the 2 weeks it is hard to know where to start. The impact on each of us helping Ruth in the school, meeting such welcoming and interesting people, to experience a country recovering from the horrors of civil war, to drive in such terrible roads and yes even the night out under the stars. For each of us the highlight is the warmth and generosity of the people. A people, who by the standards of the west have nothing, but are rich in their spirit and kindness.
We have a few people to thank as we look back on our journey –
- A big thanks to Ruth Hadley – she has been a great host while at the same time being our guide and our example.
- Thanks also to Ruth & Jonathan Singleton – They have put up with the Scottish 7 all the time we have been in Angola. Nothing has been a problem and they have opened their home to us over the 13 days. The downside for them is they are now travelling back to the UK with us.
- Thanks have to go to Jim Kiernan. He has been with us in spirit all the journey. He would love to have been with us and even though he knew it was impossible to travel he has helped us in the organisation all through the previous months.
- Lastly to the fellowship at TCF in Stevenston. They have been behind our trip right from the beginning. The prayer support has been humbling and they made the journey possible financially along with the other donations received over the previous 2 years.
One final thing. I have been reliably informed that TCF are having a welcome home for the Angola travellers at their meeting on Sunday at 6.30pm. I know there is a massive following of the blog over the 2 weeks – 330 people at it’s peak. If you have been following the blog and would like to come along to the meeting we would love to see you. The address is Townhead Christian Fellowship, Townhead Street, Stevenston. Next to the Post Office.
Tomorrow we set off on our journey home. A massive 53 hours travelling. We look forward to getting home to our family and friends. If you are at the welcome home see you there. If not thanks for taking the time to read over our adventure.
Last update from Jim by text :
"Pray for us as we leave Saurimo at 3:30pm to drive all night in 2 Land Rovers to Luanda. Driving shared between Jim (Tonka) Stewart (Beckster) and Jonathan and Ruth Singleton (Superman and Lois). Roads and driving are like nothing I have ever seen before.".... They hope to be home late on Saturday evening but please come along to our service at 6:30pm on Sunday to hear about their adventures first hand (if they have the energy to talk). All welcome. It would be great for the bloggers to see a good representation from the bloggees.
Text Update.7:05AM (UK)
"Coming in to Luanda. Safe and well but very tired. Not stopped by anyone the whole night. God answers prayer."