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Tanzania 2015 Trip

A million miles in 13 days

Mari Beth Poor

We have almost come to the end of our 13 day journey in Tanzania. This morning was icing on the cake as we were able to do ministry at Kibowa Orphanage. Let me tell you a little bit about this special place. The orphanage was formed in 2005 by four women who had a heart for children who had lost their parents primarily to AIDS. Since most children with AIDS are instantly considered outcasts, the children simply had no place to go. Fortunately, God is a father to the fatherless and provided for them by laying it on the women's hearts to open a place where the children could be safe, warm, and fed.

Over the years, Mountaintop and other churches have supported the children's education, and now several of them have earned degrees. This morning we were able to meet the four children we have been sponsoring. It is very meaningful to see children who had no chance to now be flourishing under the love of their caretakers and through the support of people who care.

There are now 2 caretakers- Amina and Safael. Interestingly enough, one is Christian and one is Muslim and yet they have peacefully come together to minister to these children. They offer both Islamic and Christian teaching. That might seem strange, but our team (and now we invite you) is praying that the light of Jesus will shine strongly in the darkness and that the Muslim children as well as Amina will come to know Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. It is a very special place, and the children are well cared for. Amina and Safael have a wonderful vision for the orphanage to move into a bigger location (there are currently 51 kids in 4 rooms) and to start a vocational school so that the children who are not supported in their education will be able to learn a trade and make a living. It is truly a God-given vision, and we are eager to see how we can partner with these precious women in the future.

Our group was able to love on the kids for a few hours through crafts and games and songs. The pictures below will illustrate how much it meant to them and even more to us. Our flight leaves in a few hours, so please be in prayer for our travel. It has been an amazing trip, and though we are all very ready to come home, we leave behind a little "peace" (pun intended) of our hearts. Thank you all for joining us on this journey.

 Clayton was incredible with the children

Clayton was incredible with the children

 Nicole's heart was stolen

Nicole's heart was stolen

 The children sang songs for us first!

The children sang songs for us first!

 The kids love Baba (Grandfather) Tom

The kids love Baba (Grandfather) Tom

 If there is ever a doubt that God can use anything to spread the Gospel, this is a sweet Muslim girl wearing a crown of salvation and a Gospel sharing T-shirt.

If there is ever a doubt that God can use anything to spread the Gospel, this is a sweet Muslim girl wearing a crown of salvation and a Gospel sharing T-shirt.

 Lauren and Leah leading the children in "rocking the guitar" during the song called Hosanna Rock

Lauren and Leah leading the children in "rocking the guitar" during the song called Hosanna Rock

 Fred was amazing with the kids!

Fred was amazing with the kids!

 Sylvia's heart for people blows us away

Sylvia's heart for people blows us away

 How can she not steal your heart?

How can she not steal your heart?

 Mari Beth's heart is melted

Mari Beth's heart is melted

 Dr. Kay tended to the sick children

Dr. Kay tended to the sick children

 Cathey with Amina and Safael who are wearing aprons handmade by a sweet Mountaintopper.

Cathey with Amina and Safael who are wearing aprons handmade by a sweet Mountaintopper.