Sunday, 26 August 2012


'That's just the way it is.'
Always said with  a shrug of the shoulder and head slightly tilted right ...
With the youngest two down for a nap, Prince doing some school work and Serge seizing the moment for a Sunday afternoon nap, I decided to make a quick trip to town to grab some ingredients for make your own pizzas for dinner. I had woke up earlier in the day with a faint sinus headache and so I knew that getting out would get me some air and hopefully clear my head.

I decided go to the new 'mall' and check out a health food store that supposedly had pecans and Nakumatt our supermarket.

I did find pecans for the first time in Rwanda a few weeks ago in a local shop and bought some up. I wanted to see about bulk. Well,they did have bulk... but for 43,000 RWF per KILO!!! That's $69.91 USD per kilo!!! SERIOUSLY????
I headed to Nakumatt, our supermarket.
With no kids in tow, I decided to take advantage of browsing a little. I checked out the books as I was looking for something for Isabella and Beni for the flight back to Canada later this year. It's a few months away but my time is always so limited for 'browsing' so I took advantage of it. I did find some great sticker books.
I grabbed pizza ingredients and headed to the cashier.
As she was ringing up my meat I noticed that both came up higher than the prices on the packages. I do give credit to her that she noticed and called her supervisor over. That supervisor went to see her supervisor. I waited... and waited.
Finally she came back and just said that the meat counter computers were not updated and that the higher prices... much higher I might add.... were the correct ones. I made the attempt to argue my point of being the customer, that the prices posted should be the ones to be paid... all in vain. Of course.
That's just the way it is.
I have lived here full time for almost 7 years. You would think that I would get used to this, have a thicker skin, whatever for this sort of thing ... and I do most days. But some days, like today, I don't.
Thinking I'll just go make some cookies with Isabella.

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Ride for Refuge - Cycle for Rwanda!

The Ride for Refuge - formerly the Ride for Refugees started a number of years ago in Canada. Since that time, funds raised in the Ride has basically funded the ministry which we do in the Kiziba Refugee Camp.
The Ride is very important for us, in fact it are vital. I just read a story yesterday from a short-term team member this summer and the impact that the camp had on his life. This camp is full of hopelessness. The refugees sit and wait for fighting to end, but from waht I see
As an organisation we have been doing what we can to support the refugees, and give some hope to the camp. We have provided schooling for a small number who have completed their university studies, we have supplied capital and training for micro businesses, done pastoral training and leadership development, and in the last two months, have now put up the walls and roof for a library.
But we need your help to do more. Our goals are to support even more students to get a full education whether we partner with a local school, or create a learning center in the camp. We hope to fill the library with books, and allow the refugees to enter and read and learn. And we hope to partner more with the Youth group in the camp, and assist them in their goals for bringing hope and Life to Kiziba.
But, all of these things we can’t do without your help. For some more information, and to see the camp, please watch the video below:

The Ride for Refugee in North America is September 29
So, if you can, please sign up to do the ride. Join the WMB Riders or register a team of your own, or sponsor one of the teams / team members riding for Kiziba, and help partner with us to make these goals a reality, and bring some hope into the camp.
Teams in North America
WMB Rwanda Riders – Link (Waterloo)
Visit to find teams riding for Kiziba Camp, or start your own…

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

Nearly Completed Library!

We just received this picture of the library in the refugee camp.
It`s going to be ready for books very soon!!
How exciting.
Not only will it be a place for students and others to come and do research, learn language and meet socially. But we`re praying it will be a place for intentional discipleship, Bible classes for pastors, leadership development, English classes, computer lab.... God only knows the full potential.
HUGE thanks to all of you out there who made this happen!! You know who you are.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Mom's 60th!

We had a great day yesterday celebrating mom's 60th birthday.
Her sister which lives in Belgium was present so that was a lovely addition to the party.
Great to have immediate family together.

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Not Forgotten!

Love this t-shirt that Alphonsine was wearing today at Ubuzima, an association for those with HIV/AIDS. 
Thinking it says it all.


Yesterday we did something that we've been dreaming of for years - take all the kids in our houses and their house moms to Akagera National Park for the day!!

We told the kids on Friday after the dance camp. Oh my goodness I have never seen them so excited! What joy for me to watch them jump and shout around. 

Oh what fun we had.
At 4am we loaded up a minibus and a coaster bus and headed out.
47 of us!

First stop, giraffes
 Then lots of zebra, waterbuffalo, antelope of all sizes and makes, baboons, monkeys and birds and I'm sure I've missed something ...

Picnic lunch for everyone

We saw so many hippos out of water.
Very fun
Our family at one of my favourite lookouts.
Incredible view

Had a WILD encounter with the rogue elephant.
There is never a guarantee that you'll see elephants but
Isabella prayed very earnestly the night before and God heard her!
Serge was the one with the eagle eyes who spotted him in the bush.
And then the elephant decided to visit us.
Good thing the minibus and the coaster bus have decent pick up!

All of us at the end of a very long, dusty day.
Time for the 2 hour drive home, showers and BED!

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Dance Camp Reflections

Two years ago, we hosted a young woman named Kendal from Los Angeles for 2 months as an intern. She was in her last year at Fuller Seminary and needed a field placement and somehow we got connected and she came.

Little did we know what God was up to in her life or ours.

In her words two years ago ... 'I came feeling like I was entitled to everything and now I feel like I'm entrusted with everything.'

Serge and I were humbled to be part of this incredible transformation. I remember her telling me that she had never had dust on her shoes... and by the end, she was dancing in barefoot in the dirt.

She is an incredibly gifted praise dancer. We knew that God would use her here with our  ministry to street kids. Since we started an annual day camp for street kids and former street kids in 2006, we have included arts - music, drama, cultural dance, painting, drawing - depending on the talent of those serving with us at the time. Those living on the street do not have any opportunity to discover any of these skills or gifts which God may have created in them.

Kendal returned last year with a team
She returned this year with a team.
She plans to come back each year until God tells her otherwise.

This years team
BR - Kendal, Andre, Nikita, Tanae
FR - Delilah, Monica, Daniel
Just the other day she reminded me of a long conversation we had in the bank parking lot during her first year here. She was trying to find purpose and meaning with all she was experiencing. I said to her, ' I think that all this is so that you can go home and mobilize your church into mission (She was attending a mega church and she was their first missionary) and bring them back here on short-term teams.'

Well that is what has happened... and each and every one that has been brought on her teams has been significantly impacted. It's so incredible to see, when team members who think they are coming to give, end up receiving more than they could imagine.

Serge translating for Kendal as she
introduces the 20 minute performance
including song and dance
Today was the presentation of the last two weeks of camp. We partnered with Harvest Restoration Church - a long time friend of Serge's ministering in a poorer part of Kigali. My heart is full of thanksgiving for all that has happened in the two weeks. I saw each team member engaged with the camp participants. I saw the amazing fruit of their labours.

- 90+ kids between the ages of 5 and 25 showed up each day for camp from 9am to 3pm
- The church has been wanted a drama / dance team for the last years and has had no one to train them - a group of 17 from the church were trained for two weeks.
- Each participant got to chose which dance they wanted to learn or participate in the chorale. (Amazing to see some of our former street kids singing in harmony!)
- We spent an hour each day in worship and teaching around 'We are because He (God) is.' 
- During the camp, a number of kids asked very significant questions about faith. 
- The Pastor of the church was significantly moved as to how the kids from his church, over half the camp participants, were able to learn, grow in their faith and perform during the Sunday Service. Those that Kendal has trained here, will continue to work with the growing drama ministry in his church.

Sure looking forward to next years camp and all that it will bring!

Some of the 90+ kids lined up outside for their last
song and dance to 'God is Enough!'
PS. Isabella was thrilled to be involved this year