We are on our way back to Ohio. It was a good trip to Africa, as far as gathering the needed information with which to make a decision. Angola is a broken place, quite obviously recovering from a 30+ yr war. The medical and Kingdom work appear immense, with much illness and virtually no medical care, especially in the rural areas, which are highly populated, and becoming more so as people move back to their villages with the increasing security that war will not return. The medical need is clear, as there are virtually no physicians (estimates are 1 medical doctor/50,000 people outside of the cities). Also, the existing church is quite graceless and religious, per the missionaries. The Kingdom need for Jesus lovers to witness to the truth of who He is, and to love and demonstrate a “come as you are” inclusiveness, is also clear.
The missionaries there were quite welcoming. There is a beautiful small group of missionaries serving the people of southwest Angola. Dr. Steve Foster is running a hospital that is beautifully serving the people here. It is this work that we are considering joining to especially take medical help and the good news of God’s grace to those living in villages away from the city.
Bets and I will now listen to our Father, meet with friends and talk things through. We can see that it would be a tough move and difficult work, but so needed. An interesting realization was to see that Angola is one of the most expensive countries in the world to live. The capital (Luanda) is actually the most expensive city in the world and where we would live (Lubango) has about the same COL. How about that contrast for a country with such extreme poverty (life expectancy of 38)?! Where we would live is a very crowded, broken city of more than one million people. It would be quite an adjustment from our small Amazon town!
Much to consider. Now we process and pray. Though the need for medical and Kingdom help is quite clear (ripe harvest, few laborers), we want to do this in response to a call from our Father specifically for us. We will try to seek His heart and His Kingdom first, rather than comfort, security, ease, etc.
Thanks for all the love and support you have shown us in this process. Please pray with us as we seek our Father’s heart.