Dear Friends and Family,
You may be thinking, "Didn't they just send out a newsletter?" and you would be correct. We did just send our April update near the end of April. But now it is May and a lot has happened already.
And you may also ask yourself, "Didn't they just announce one of their children's upcoming weddings?" And again you would be correct. In March we wrote about our daughter, Becky's, upcoming wedding in June to Dave Barker. Now, our son Sam and his fiancé Heather Orozco, have announced their engagement and plans for a November wedding. We are very happy for them and congratulate them on this momentous step in life. See picture below.
When we last left the U.S., many of you asked when we were going to return to the States. Our response was that we didn't know, but for sure something would come up. Well, now two weddings have come up, so if all goes according to plan, we should be in the U.S. at least twice in 2013.
Easter in Ethiopia is this Sunday, May 5. On Thursday, May 2, all three of our schools had their Easter programs. Since Peggy and I cannot be at all three campuses at once, we have been taking turns attending either Christmas or Easter programs at the schools. This time it was the Ziway Pre-School's turn. It is always so encouraging to see what those little pumpkin-heads can do--they are so talented for five and six year olds. And since 8 of our 10 Samuel's Home kids go to that school it is really special. For example, our Million was "Jesus" in the drama they presented on His trial, crucifixion, and resurrection.
For some reason our staff members keep asking me back to give the message (and they want it in Amharic). So this time, no surprise, I spoke on Luke 24:1-5. Since the Ethiopian preachers are always so loud and so animated (and long), I'm always somewhat mystified they insist on my speaking. It sure gives me a chance to work on my Amharic skills. And it does seem to get easier, but I doubt it will ever be natural.
Gary and Peggy
I have included some pictures below:
A picture of Sam and Heather. After that--we had a chance to participate in the first part of the program at the Primary School (grades 1 -7). It's surprising how large our student body has become and soon, I guess, we will outgrow the dining center as our meeting hall. After that, we were welcomed at the Pre-School campus by this parade of all the students. As they marched in to find their places, they were singing (at the top of their lungs) "Eyesus tenestwal." (Jesus is risen.)
Following that is a picture of some of our students singing the songs. Our little Mesa is front row far left. Then a picture of the meal, and we are awed by how much food these little kids can eat.
Finally, after the students had finished their program and eaten, we set up for the program with the adults (vice-director, teachers, kitchen staff, cleaners, and maintenance, along with others). This is yours truly giving his message in a photo snapped by Peggy.