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On the Scene with Pastor Gary Part 2

Uncommon dedication… the baby was due at anytime!

Day 1… A full day of shopping in the very crowded, dusty and hot market place in the city center; there are 35 children to get to school and all of them need supplies. Rhona is very pregnant, due at anytime with a few (false?) labor pains already rumbling around. A full day of making selections, bargaining (arguing?) the lowest prices, packing the taxi and then the long 3+ hour ride to the village over deeply rutted, rough, dusty, bumpy roads (can you feel it?). Upon arrival the supplies are distributed among all the children, piece by piece, bottle by bottle, and then… the long ride home – same roads! End of day one.

Day 2… Travel back to village – same roads! There are 3 separate groups of children to pack up and deliver to 3 different schools. Each group will take about a two hour round trip – same roads!  It all starts at 2 PM. Long after night fall, Rhona returns home – 3 hours – same roads! The first real labor pain arrives – fortunately isolated. End of day two.

Day 3… Full blown labor pains start early in the day; and just before midnight, little Benir Harris Buwule makes his grand entry into the world, a bouncing baby boy … all in a day’s work! (BTW, there is no option to “natural child birth” – same roads!) End of day three.

Rhona is our very faithful co-worker in Uganda. She regards our children here as her own. She and her husband, Edwin, are irreplaceable to our work; we could not have done what we have done so far without these two special people! The above is an example of her courage and her dedication to what God is doing in our children. (For those who have been following us for while, Rhona is Patrick’s daughter.)

Almost home! The trip to-date has been intense, productive, and basically without undue drama (he says cautiously –  the last time I said that, riots broke out an hour later!). Today (Monday) I am returning to Uganda after 4 days in Rwanda with Monique. This wonderful lady never ceases to amaze me. More energy, ideas, and ministry impact than 5 people half her age, and she keeps going and going (she is approaching her 80th birthday!). We are blessed to be partnered with her in all that God is doing through her and for the victims of the genocide.Olive Branch Ministries

Tuesday… I have a very critical half day meeting with our lawyers. Please pray for answers, a resolution and a clear way forward. This piece has been a very frustrating part of the journey!

Wednesday… I will visit “Vision for Africa,” a ministry that has been doing for 17 years what we are just starting. Hopefully they have “wheels” that we do not then have to reinvent! After this I will be on to the airport to begin the long journey home that night (about 1 PM MST); and Lord willing, and volcano clouds not withstanding (a number of fights recently have been canceled and/or diverted due to the clouds!), I should touchdown in Denver at about 1:30 PM on Thursday.

I return home this trip with my socks blessed clean off my feet! By God’s grace what we are doing here is massively important and hugely significant in the transformation of the lives of these wonderful children! But, I also return home aware of ministry challenges that must be met. You see, I’ve always been kinda weird!  I have great difficulty with status quo, or the way things are, or the way things have been going. I tend to always be striving for that “next level” whatever it may be and however it may look. So, in the “always getting better” theme, I come home wrestling with several issues that must be processed and evaluated. It’s all good, but it all needs your prayer that we may know and follow the mind of God as we plow forward.Olive Branch Ministries

Again, again, again…

Thank you for allowing me to be your hands, feet, eyes, ears and mouth on this marvelous journey and as always…

The best is yet to come!

Another personal note…

Back home in the United States (Iowa), little Emery Ann made her grand entry into the world on Wednesday morning, born to son Travis and Shari. All are doing well; and from the pictures, it seems Emery’s sisters are totally caught up in the marvel of their new sister.  Lord willing, son Jeremy, Sarah and Chloe will welcome their new one later in June .. and then there were 6! Keep them all in your prayers. I am a very proud and blessed man!

Love to you all, I will be in touch…

– Grampy!