Sunday, December 2, 2007

Church and RockHill (from Friday)

It's 9:30 and my hubby and son are in bed, so I thought. . .well, time to blog again! I don't have any new Davis pictures to show b/c I left my memory card in my computer this morning! It was all that rushing around to get a blog up before we went to church b/c of all of my emails (you know who you are) complaining about no new post or pics from the day before!

I'll start by telling you about today and then talk some about RockHill from Friday. Today, we went to church. Actually, we went to Church of Believers, Christian and Missionary Alliance led by Brother Adelle Watson. This is the only C&MA church in Liberia. We have been emailing brother Watson for quite some time now and had gathered a bunch of Bible study books and resources for them. This was such a sweet time! Their church met in a school room in what the US would call "the slums" but is just called Monrovia here. I don't know how to describe the situation, so we'll have to wait for video when we get back. There were about 25 people present and they were super excited to see us. Brother Watson asked us to speak, so we basically told them about our C&MA church and how we do things. Then, we gave them the books and explained why we had chosen some of our favorites. . .Self Confrontation, Trusting God, Experiencing God and Celebration of Discipline (4 of our top 5). It was fun to worship with them and reminded me of the song we sing back home, about other nations praising. It was a little like a loud catholic service! We stood up and sat down so many times, I couldn't count bt always with lots of music and praising! So fun!!! They were very excited about what God is doing at Westwood and sent their greetings and prayers. After that, it was lunch at Golden Beach again (I had a hamburger, thanks for asking!) with Pastor Charles and his wife to hear more about Spirit Liberia. . .which I'll have to do a whole post on sometime! Then, we went to the hospital b/c Christina (a woman who's here to pick up her baby and is staying with Donna)'s baby Blessing is there with malaria. The hospital trip itself was an experience. . .it was like stepping back in time. The hospital was clean and all, but had no machines. So, a little baby was connected to oxygen, but no heart monitor or anything. It was so sad to walk through and see the starving children. I'll post more hospital stuff after our meeting with ELWA hospital director tomorrow night. . .so, we finished our day in our room. Whew, we needed that! We have been going non-stop since arriving and needed a day to take naps!


Wait, I did say that I'd talk about RockHill, right? My post is already so long that I should save it, but a post with no pictures is practically worthless, right?


I'll start with RockHill, but don't have a ton of pics b/c Greg was in charge of pics and I was videoing! We went to RockHill on Friday morning with Pastor Charles. He lives in RockHill and has a church there. This is a pictue of the church they are building. Pastor Charles is so excited b/c ALL they have left to do is the ROOF! RockHill is a place in town where 15,000 people live and is basically a rock quarry (think Fred Flinstone). However, this is more archaic than the Flinstones. They make piles of rocks (that are fist sized) and then spend their days smashing those into pebbles and selling them. It is estimated that they can make .40 a day. Read that again, .40 a day. They live in shantys around "their" piles. These are basically thatched roof, but some use bits of tin or scraps. There is no clean water. Yes, 15,000 people and NO clean water! There are a lot of NGO's that do clean water and most of the area around Monrovia is served first by these NGO's b/c of not having to travel far, but b/c it is rock. . the cost will be much more. I think it would be closer to $7-10,000, instead of $2,500. Still, 15,000 people. They have to walk in to "town" about 1 hour away just to get a bucket of water. Most just drink the water that is there which is dirty. This is why some estimate the death rate of children under the age of 5 to be 50%. Does it seem like just a statistic? Look at these faces. . .
There are also only a handful of schools and all of them charge tuition. Tuition is normally around $80 a year, plus school uniforms and lunch. This is virtually impossible for a family that makes $10 a month pounding rocks. Still, some families scrape it together (probably by not eating) and send their kids to these schools. They are worn down and deplorable. I think pretty much every building except the hotel we're staying in here would be condemned in the US. The school house looks like it's been bombed out (it probably was) and the desks are something out of a junkyard. But, when we got there, the kids were SO happy! They were a blast! They showed us around and tugged on our arms. . .that's why I'm so low in the picture. . b/c so many kids wanted a hand on me! I loved it! As we were filming them, the kids began to sing for our video camera. These kids. The ones who live in RockHill in one room shanty houses with no clean water, no doctor for MILES and this deplorable school house. They began to sing, "Praise the Lord, we praise you Lord" in the sweetest voices I have ever heard. I just started crying right there. I was trying to add a bit of commentary to the video and explain what the kids are saying (the Liberian accent can be difficult to understand) and you can hear me. "They're saying (choke back tears) Praise the Lord". It brings tears to my eyes right now. I want to be that kind of thankful. Talk about praising Him in the storm. . .you haven't seen a storm like their lives are.
I'll leave you with the Liberian worship song we learned today.
"We Worship You, Papa
We Worship You.
There is no like you are, Papa
We Worship YOU"

8 comments:

Campbell's Hope said...

I MISS YOU>>
Rob

DeniseinSC said...

Thank you....I praise you Lord...Papa
Love, Denise

Rebecca Wasko said...

Hey Brandi...so I've been stalking your blog for quite some time now...SORRY!!! I am so excited for you guys!! I've been checking your blog everyday this week to keep up with your journey...everytime I fight back tears. I look at Davis and say..."I want one!" He is amazing. I was telling Guy all of the ways God had worked out every detail of you guys getting there. Praise God!! Enjoy your new little one and the rest of your trip.

Laura said...

can't you take pictures of him sleeping. I need something:)

loving my life said...

Isn't it humbling to see how grateful people are when they really shouldn't be compared to spoiled Americans?

Cassie - Homeschooling Four said...

How sweet! Looking forward to seeing you Friday!!

Charity said...

"You are worthy to be praised....Papa, oh Lord, Papa"

I love that song!

Dono & Laurie said...

Brandi-
What a wonderful post this is! My heart is going out to you! My heart is going out to Liberia...I'm excited to go back, and this post has truly put my "grumbling & complaining" into prospective. I'm praising God and repenting all in the same moment. Praying for you & Davis. Read most of this through a blurry wall of tears.
Lots of Love-
Laurie