Most of you know or know of my niece, Meagan Hawley. Meagan lives at the Namwianga Mission in Zambia, taking care of orphaned babies and little ones whose families cannot care for them. Many of these infants are HIV+. Meagan, the daughter of my brother, Dave, and his lovely wife, Sally, does an incredible work for Jesus! Here is her latest monthly report!May 31, 2015
Greetings my friends! I hope you are having a great beginning of your summer break, if you in fact get one! Our winter is just starting and the cold is coming in strong! The last three months have been full and hard and happy, all rolled into one.
On March 21, one of our twins Ezra died after days of fighting in the hospital. We knew it was miraculous that the boys were doing so well after being born at just a couple of pounds each, but it was still so unexpected and shocking when Ezra went downhill so suddenly. His twin brother, Azariah, is doing really well still, and we’re so grateful for the good health he’s experiencing.
Only a few days later, Ba Fortune, my dear friend and house mother at Haven 3, died very unexpectedly. Her death was such a huge blow for all of us. The aunties, the babies, and I have all mourned her loss and the loss of Ezra so much. Each day I miss Ba Fortune though, in a different way. As she was the nurse for all of our babies, we worked together daily to go over treatments and plans for our babies, so not having her there has made life so different. I especially miss her when we have tiny babies that need IVs started because she was so very skilled in that. And she was just a friend, my first friend that has died in my adult life. Now we are in the process of finding someone to fill her role as house mother and nurse for Haven 3, and she left some big shoes to fill. Please join us in praying that we’ll find someone who will fit well into our Haven community.
Courtney, my sister-in-law, arrived the day we buried Ezra and was here with me when Ba Fortune died. Her trip was planned long before we knew the events that week would hold, but I’m so grateful for God’s kindness in big ways like her presence during painful days. Her visit allowed me a welcome distraction from the sadness of it all, and I loved getting to show her my day to day life for awhile. Every minute was a treasure.
The last 3 months I’ve also had another little visitor with me, Mary. You saw her picture in our last update, and she came home to stay with me not long after that. It’s been months of little sleep and fighting for this little girl to grow and thrive, and it’s definitely paid off. She’s changed so much and is ready to reenter the Haven world any day now. It’s nothing special I’ve done, but God’s amazing healing power that has blessed her life so much. My heart aches at the thought of her not being with me every night anymore, but I’m so glad that she’s better and ready to go. I’m also grateful my home will be open and available to the next one who needs it.
My friend Jana Miller moved here in late April to join the work at the Haven. She will mainly be dealing with the village side of our work, which is following up with our babies once they’ve returned home. With the hundreds of children that have come through the Haven’s doors, it’s a big job that needs someone doing it full time. She will work with our church development team when she makes visits to see if there are churches in the areas our babies are living. If not, those will be good places for the CDT to look into planting some churches, and if so, they will visit that church and make sure they know about the family and are looking after them. I’m looking forward to the expansion of the work in this way and all it may mean for our babies and the church. She’s also a dear friend to me, and life is richer when she’s around! She’ll go to language school next month and then life will really pick up for her.
Jana, on a village visit
In May, the whole missionary crew from Namwianga traveled to Eastern Zambia for a conference put on by a ministry called Intermission. The leaders were former missionaries to Africa, and it was so good to be encouraged and mentored by them. All together, there were almost 50 people representing Zambia, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa and Angola. What a gift to be able to share ideas, struggles, triumphs, and our hearts with each other! The Intermission team treated us to a couple of game drives on the retreat, and it was so fun to be able to spend time with our teammates from Namwianga away from the pressures of work and mission life! We walked away wiser and refreshed and empowered to keep on keeping on!
And the most exciting thing of all was that the container arrived! Do you know what that means? So did all the toys and fun gifts you lovingly purchased for our children! It was SO MUCH FUN opening them myself first ([Symbol]) and then letting them open them up! We are learning a lot of lessons in sharing these days, as the 3 tricycles I asked for don’t exactly cover everybody! ;) To all of you who spent your time and money and heart making sure our babies have fun things to play with and engage their minds, I am so grateful to you. Here are a few pictures of the new gifts! If you don’t see yours, it doesn’t mean we don’t love it, I promise!
It’s time for me to go. There’s a little baby crying on my lap to be fed, so I must oblige. I appreciate you all so much and remain grateful for the ways you love us. God sustains me so well, and one of those ways is through my partnership and friendship with you all. Have a great summer!
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