I am trying to figure out the temperature in Farenhite to tell ya’ll…to put it into perspective, because it is really hot! Aha, it is 73 degrees, so not terribly so, but coming from 20 degrees…plus, of course, it is humid. Like I just remarked to Leanne, it smells like the reptile houses at zoos.
Today I went to church with some of the other team-workers here at the Envision center. There are only four of them right now, Leanne, Hannah, and Dan and Alicia (they are a couple). Leanne is sort of our leader, Hannah is…I guess she’s just like a missionary who is primarily going to be hosting teams when they come. Dan and Alicia are here until mid April and then they are moving to Bongolo (a C&MA hospital a day’s drive away) to host teams when they go down there. So Hannah, D&A, and I went to one of the many C&MA churches called…I think they were calling it En Zion, which would mean “In Zion”. The church services here last for several hours, but we were late so we were only in the service for about half and hour. Of course it was all in French and I only understood a few words, but the song they sang afterwards I actually knew, so I could sorta sing along in English!
All of the team-workers have been here before together so they knew some of the people at the church. You know, in America it seems like something the churches make a big push for is that church members be more welcoming to newcomers. Just come to Africa and you’ll get over you fear of approaching strangers! Many people even just came up to shake our hands and say, “Bonjour!” I can already sense the heart that these people have for God.
Everything here is, as you can imagine, just very different from America. The city of Libreville is fairly large and it is right on the coast so I think beach trips will not be scarce. The driving and road conditions here are very different! I will never forget to buckle my seat belt! The roads are pretty bumpy here in the city, I hear they are worse in the country, but I like bumpy roads…they make for a fun ride. The driving is very fast-paced. Let’s just say if I started driving here I would be honked at every few seconds…and I’d probably get into an accident.
I wish I had pictures to post for ya’ll but I got in last night and was so exhausted the only thing I could think about was how to converse and when I could go to bed. And today for some reason I just didn’t want to start snapping pictures…I have 3 months, which is plenty of time to capture this new world in photos.
The flight over here was actually pretty awesome. God answered everyone’s prayers for things to go smoothly. I found every gate and got onto every flight easily. And on the flight from Chicago to Frankfurt a huge group of fellow believers were flying over to go on a tour of Israel–so about half of the plane was filled with Christians! It was just so amazing to have family in Christ there. I sat in a row with a very fun, kind couple going on the trip. That flight seemed to “fly by” (haha). By the time I got on the plane from Fankfurt to Libreville, though, I was brain-dead. I tried to sleep on that flight but I only had off-and-on napping. Thankfully there was no one in the seat by me so I could curl up on two seats. Once we landed in Libreville I could just feel (even in the plane) the humidity. We got off and I stood in line for about half an hour to have my passport checked. Leanne and the team were coming to the airport to get me but the car broke down–that happens a lot here. So one of the missionaries, Steve, came to get me instead. Steve and his family live across town and work with the Envision team a lot but they are sort of independent missionaries. We watched Wipeout while waiting for Leanne because they get television channels from South Africa!
Three of us here at the center–Dan, Hannah, and I–are sick. Please pray that we all heal quickly and that no one else gets sick. It would also be really nice if we didn’t have to deal with sickness at all for a while! I’m sure a fever would be extremely uncomfortable here.
Also, please pray that we would not have any more car troubles. Like I said, there is a lot of that here. The van broke down last night and like this morning we got up to go to church and the land rover had a flat tire. I think the broken-down van is really stressing out J.R. (a Gabonese man who lives in the center and “takes care” of us), so pray that he would be at peace about that.
I promise to take pictures soon! There are lots of lizards here, and there were two cockroaches in the house yesterday. Plus, we have banana and papaya trees in the yard! How awesome is that!
Jean 14:6 “Jésus répondit: Je suis le chemin, la vérité et la vie. Nul ne vient au Père que par moi.”
John 14:6 “Jesus answered, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no one comes to the Father except through Me.”