It seems like a lot has been going on lately, it's almost tempting to make this a "catch up" post, but I'm afraid that would get long! Suffice it to say that we've been on the road a lot recently, between our weekly trips to Mahadaga, the regional church women's retreat that I spoke at, meetings with ministry partners to the CAH, and a marriage conference in Fada.
This weekend we found ourselves pleasantly "immobile" as our vehicle did all the travelling without us. Our colleague, Betty Eichhorst, left Mahadaga on Thursday to return to her home in Canada. She doesn't have her own vehicle, so we came in to Mahadaga Wednesday afternoon so she could use our car (she hired a driver) to get back to the capital where the airport is. Betty has been working in Mahadaga since 1956. She retired from full-time missions work with SIM in 2000, but has still been coming to Mahadaga for 6 months at a time every year since then. Recently, it seems she states it "may be her last time" each time she arrives in October, though usually by the time she's leaving in April she's making plans to return again. This time, however, she seems less sure, and there's a sense we may be seeing the end of a legacy here in Mahadaga! Whether we'll see her again or not we do not know, but may the Lord reward her with a gorgeous crown on that Great Day of Accounting!
After taking Betty all the way back to Ouaga, our car was due back Friday or Saturday. However, the Walsh family, who also serve with us here in Mahadaga, are having car trouble of late. They were on their way to the marriage conference in Fada last weekend when the radiator in their car blew up about 100 kms from the mission station. They had to be towed all the way to Fada (after waiting for several hours in the hot mid-day sun!), and then towed again to Ouaga after the conference was over where there was hope of a mechanic (and parts) that might be able to fix the car. Unfortunately, by the Thursday when Betty arrived in Ouaga with our vehicle, it became clear that the Walsh vehicle needs a heart transplant. Yes, folks, a replacement motor must be found, and for a Nissan Terrano, those can only be found in Ghana in this area. That means 3-4 weeks before the car is running again. So, in the end, the timing worked out perfectly for our car to be in Ouaga while we stayed behind. We agreed to extend our stay in Mahadaga, and the Walshes now have a car to drive back to Mahadaga tomorrow (Monday).
That was a pretty long-winded way to say, we ended up spending Easter in Mahadaga! With all of our adventures of the last couple of weeks, Easter sort of snuck up on us, and we weren't really "prepared" for it as far as the usual celebratory preparations go. We did attend Easter service at our local church. The service started at 8 and ended at 11:15, with at least 4 choirs performing, 2-3 theater pieces, and a couple of expressive dance numbers before the pastor preached an 8-point sermon on Christ, the Conqueror of death! You can experience a little of our service by viewing the video below.
All in all, we had a relaxing, quiet morning, enjoyed the Easter service at our church, made an Easter dinner of left-over honey-baked chicken and macaroni and cheese, and took a joy-ride through the fields of Mahadaga on the Yamaha Rhino.