Sunday, 31 August 2014

July 2014

School finished early June. Our boys got a new friend called Rosco. She is a playful dog that we are looking after while her owners are on furlough. Now the boys have daily walks with the help of Rosco.

Having so much time in their hands - with Steve in the Seminary and me at the OMS treasury office -  the boys helped sorting out the new books for CAM. As they love books, they enjoyed the task and learned that work can be fun.

When July arrived and the Seminary had a break in between semesters, the whole family was eager to explore. First we spend a short weekend in Swaziland, retracing Steve's steps from more than a decade ago. We visited Waterford Kamhlaba United World College, and Mbabane Chapel. In both places Steve (and by extension, the rest of the family) was warmly welcomed by friends. It was great!

Paulo, one of our colleagues, had mentioned to us Macaneta Beach. It is a beautiful place and not too far from Maputo... that is, if the ferry is working. But when we chose to go, the ferry was not working, and our desire to finally visit the beach was so strong that we decided to go for it, and drive the 4 or 5 extra hours, most of them in sand dunes - with no map, GPS, and virtually no traffic signs (who is going to organised traffic signs in sand dunes?). It was an unique experience, and I hope we don't need to repeat it!

I realised then, what 4x4 cars are for, and how important was the lesson about how to "read" the Sun that I didn't pay attention to in the Girls Scouts! I also gave thanks to the Lord that there is still a lot of a Geographer in Steve and he managed to take us to the cottage before dark.

The next day, when we walked to the beach, I realised that it was worth the effort of the interesting journey! It was the low season and in the middle of the week. So we had it all for ourselves, and two dogs that attached themselves to us during our staying.

We truly enjoyed our time at the beach, with beautiful temperatures, and wished we could have stayed a bit longer.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Two ideas

I have to ideas in my mind that I want to share with you.  This is OMS Mozambique team (as per a few weeks ago). It is made up by at least one person from these countries: Slovakia, United States of America, Brazil, Great Britain, Ecuador and Canada. The nationalities here represented remind me of how creative God is, and how he delights in giving a variety of gifts to his children. But, given what Galatians 3:28 says (There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus), nationalities is not what I really want to draw your attention to:

First, in the period from the moment this photo was taken till now this group has already changed (Majka and Mónica have returned to their home countries), David and Lori were only visiting us; Luis, Gary and Diane will soon travel back home. It will change again in a matter of days, when the Kellys will arrive in Mozambique. A missionary life is dotted with welcomings and farewells.

We missionaries travel light, and have to learn to appreciate what God has given to us then and there – we don’t know for how long they will be our, or they will stay with us. This applies to objects, places, belongings, relationships, ministries, etc. We never become experts in saying good-byes; but the Lord enables us to welcome those who come to visit or to work with us. It becomes really real to us that everything can change, sometimes slowly and other times suddenly, but the Rock "endures through all generations" (Psalm 102:12).

Secondly, in the photograph above there are those who represent a variety of ministries or spiritual gifts: hospitality, evangelists, teachers, administrators, faith, service, mercy, giving, etc. Our team evangelises kids in our neighbourhood, gives support to the leadership of the national church, prepares biblically and theologically leaders and future ones, in emergencies offers a place of rest to other missionaries that need it, offers practical help and evangelises the disabled population, offers primary and secondary education with a Christian emphasis, organises the wives of leaders to work with their hands in order to generate income for their families, stewards the resources that God has entrusted to us to extend God’s kingdom in Mozambique, etc. However, there is still so much more that needs to be done here.

This team needs people who speaks Portuguese (or is willing to learn) and who has been called by God to serve him in administration, accountancy, teachers of theology, maintenance of buildings (electricians, painters, builders, water supply, recycling, gardening, car mechanic, etc.), discipleship, youth worker, children worker; “ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field” (Matthew 9:38).

Wednesday, 21 May 2014


We were exhausted, we have been exhausted for good time already. So…. we escaped to South Africa, for a short but exciting weekend.

Two good reasons: to celebrate one of our anniversaries, and to finally pay the so-long-planned and awaited visit to Kruger Park.

We’ve attempted to go to Kruger more than once, but as it happens one or another thing has stopped us from going: health, broken car, lack of time, responsibilities, etc.

If you have been there, you will agree with me, that it is an amazing experience.  One thing is to see animals in a zoo - it is really nice to know exotic animals - but another one is to see them in their habitat, freely being themselves and enjoying what God has created for them.

Every time we spotted something, we grabbed the camera, the binoculars, the notebook and the pen and looked at it, (if a bird, the faithful bird book became handy) and tried to identified it, write down its name.  We rejoice in the Lord for allowing us to have this great experience.

We saw elephants, impalas, kudus, blacksmith plover, kingfishers, yellow billed hornbills, louries, warthogs, rhinos, tawny eagle, giraffes, zebras, crocodiles, hippos, lions, baboon, Egyptian geese, coucals, wildebeests, buffalos, and so many other birds whose names we didn’t know.

Musical evenings Mozambican style

Sam and Joe had daily practices with the orchestra during the week of presentations. They had three different venues:  Auditorium 700 in Matola, University Cultural Centre in Maputo and and a pedagogical concert in Casa Mafurra in Matola.

Rehearsal in Teatro Avenida, Maputo

Orchestra and choir in the University Cultural Centre, Maputo

Presentation in the Auditorium 700, Matola

At the end of the week, we were all exhausted, but Sam and Joe had made new friends, and discovered the joy of playing with a bigger orchestra for a larger audience than they have experienced before.

Monday, 5 May 2014

Orquesta Xiquitsi

From early March Samuel and Joseph have been rehearsing as part of the Xiquitsi Orchestra. This orchestra is a project directed by a talented Mozambican musician known by the name Kika Materula. For both this has been a really wonderful experience. Joseph still has some difficulty to understand Portuguese, but music is an universal language. Samuel understands almost everything is spoken in Portuguese, and he knows how to speak "Portunhol".

This coming weekend, the orchestra, together with other Afican and European musicians will offer three recitals. Sam and Joe are very happy!

A Portuguese TV station presented the story about this project and if you have a little patience (it is in Portuguese) you could spot Sam and Joe there. You can watch the video clicking here.