Visit to Kapsabet

On Mother's Day, John & Micah set out in the McCropder van with their "harem" of women to visit a local village church, Kapsabet Africa Gospel Church.  Alyssa Pfister, Heather H. (visiting nurse), Heather Fader & girls, and Jess joined them on the adventure.  We asked ahead of time if there would be confusion about whether all these women were John's wives (polygamy is very common around here) and the response was laughter.  Hmmm....not exactly the emphatic "no" we were hoping for!  We did our best to clarify the situation when we introduced ourselves in church!

The Faders & Cropseys visited this church about a year ago for a harambee to build a new building.  (Harambee means "all put together" in Swahili and is basically a fundraiser -- for a church building project, school fees, medical bills, etc.)  At the time of our first visit, only the foundations existed.  A year later, they have completed walls and the roof.  Now they are hoping to complete the gaps between the walls and the roof.

We arrived 45 minutes after the service was supposed to start, but were right on time!  We enjoyed several Kipsigis songs and tried to bless the church with a wazungu ("foreigner" in Swahili) performance of "Amazing Grace" -- the only hymn that we thought we knew the words to, but apparently not all of us did!  After a sermon (in both Kipsigis & English, for our benefit), the fundraising began.  In a church harambee, people typically come to the front and publically give their gifts.  Gifts can include money, produce (sugar cane, greens, avocado, etc.), or even livestock (chickens)!  The non-monetary items are then auctioned off at the end for cash.  Anna was pretty excited about the plants that she procured!

Afterwards, we joined Janet at her home for lunch -- rice, beans, potatoes, & beef stew.  The food was delicious and the kids enjoyed playing with the animals on the compound.

Janet's family has two cows and a calf.  
Micah spent a lot of time trying to make friends with this little one.

The "harem" with our gracious hosts:  Janet, Emmanuel, Mercy, & Richard

Janet's compound.   
The mud hut on the left is the kitchen and the blue building on the right is the main living area.

Heather & Anna enjoying lunch.

Baby Emmauel at the dish washing station.

We didn't stay for the traditional chai after lunch and departed a little early, hoping to put Micah & Abi down for a belated nap as well as beat the rain that was threatening to get us stuck in the mud on the way home.  It was a very enjoyable visit and a real treat to see our friends in their natural setting.  At Tenwek, it's easy (and more comfortable) to remain in our "little America" on the mission compound and forget about what life is like for those we work with.  They are hard-working people and serve without complaint.

Please take a moment to pray that the Kapsabet congregation would continue to grow spiritually and serve as salt and light in their community.          

1 comment:

Sarah Lorenz said...

Great pictures! Thanks for sharing--it's neat to get a glimpse of what life is like in the area.