It has been a long time coming but we finally have the beginning our goat herd! There are 8 females and 2 male goats. They are the best cross bred variety that could be found. They will be bred for a renewable protein source for our kids [no pun intended].
Someday soon there will be CHICKENS! We just need to finish our wall and a little more infrastructure. Please go to the donate page to help us feed the kids. Thank you!
Is that title an oxymoron? I think it probably qualifies. This is Steve posting today. I am the president of Hesed and I am feeling oddly celebratory about the last twelve months. Those of you out there that know me are aware that my personal life has been in an upside down universe shaking turmoil lately, the worst of which has occurred in the last year. I knew the whole time that it was a device of the enemy to take me out and destroy, or at least diminish our orphanage. Well the celebration arises from the growth that our Hesed Village has by the grace of God achieved in that same year of attack. We have doubled the number of orphaned children that are now happy and safe members of our village. We have increased our staff and continue to build more infrastructure on our property [big announcements to come soon]. In short what our enemies meant for harm, the Lord has turned to our benefit. Sometimes things and sometimes even people close to us, need to be surgically removed from our lives in order for us to move on to where HE wants us to go. Not saying that it hasn’t hurt, it truly has, but the Healer has my back and I am ready to celebrate!
The time was February 2011 and I had fallen in love with the “throwaway” children of Kampala. Destitute parents would drop of their starving children onto the streets of the slums of Kampala Uganda, hopefully to find a way to survive. Those that survived did so through the rare charity of strangers or through the collection of reusable garbage. I sat with them and listened to their heartbreak stories. I laughed with the boys that always wanted to play with a willing adult. I held, [and cried] with the little girls that wanted to pretend, at least for a little while, that they had a daddy again.
I thought this was to be the first home of Hesed International Missions, but the timing just wouldn’t come together [a long and better left unspoken tale]. But now the door to Uganda has reopened a crack and Hesed will start to fulfill what my heart has never let go. There are good and faithful people on the ground already that Hesed will work with while we see, in full, what God has for us to do.
Is this the right time for us? Are the circumstances right for us to take on another country? No, but in my experience the timing and the circumstances are never “right”. I have come to believe that He waits for the timing and the circumstances to be too hard for us. He delights in building our faith when we step out of the boat. He wants us to say “Yes!” when He calls us. So here we go!
We have two trips planned for November 2014. An “adult” trip for the early part of November and a Charles Finney High School trip for the second part of the month centered around Thanksgiving.
Of course there are some that have grown to love Hesed Village so much that they will come for the whole time.
Our children will love it that they have visitors for nearly a whole month! There will be lots of activities which will include a day trip to the beach at Lake Malawi–no crocodiles I promise–think white sand and warm water.
As usual there will also be some work projects to make life at the orphanage as could as we can make it with the help of our friends.
Should you wish to come along give me a call at the office 585 263 2444 and we’ll talk about it.
It occurs to me that I haven’t posted a lot lately so for anyone that is not up to date on what Hesed has been doing in Mzuzu, so here is a quick overview.
“Hesed House” our four thousand square foot admin and team accommodation building is done, but not polished, and we continue to work on it. The next big project there is to carve out two additional bedrooms on the first floor for permanent onsite cooking and/or nursing staff.
We have two residence buildings currently that house twentyseven orphans and four house mothers. Two more residences are under construction and we expect that sometime this summer we will house fifty children and eight house mothers. Not to mention of course all of the other personnel for security, maintenance etc…
A wall around the piece of our land that been dedicated to current and future residences has been started and is currently on hold for additional funds.
For recreation we have built this year a very large swing set, jungle gym and a volleyball court.
Hesed has almost finished a maize mill building which will be a big contribution to the community. Mill equipment will be purchased, if God wills, when electricity reaches to that point on the road that Hesed is on, which we are praying will be later this year.
Hesed has built it’s first church. It is on Hesed property in Mzuzu. We have started the paperwork to be an officially recognized church organization in Malawi. With such state recognition and as the Lord wills, we will continue to build churches and engage in simultaneous evangelism mainly in the small area villages that lack a bible believing house of worship and in some cases are bereft even of any real knowledge of Jesus.
“Growth” is the word for 2014. I can see it happening in the here and now but more importantly I “feel” it coming. I am not sure exactly all of the forms it will take, but I sense the substance of the miraculous in our future.
It is a wall. Why build a wall? Don’t walls divide people? These were my initial questions when Social Services told us we needed this “medieval” fortification. But the first time I watched our children playing on their brand new swings and I saw the villagers passing by on the nearby path, I saw the danger. How easy it would be for the envious, the devious, the mean spirited to come and bring harm to our innocents. And so we started the wall.
But not too long after we left last December a group of neighborhood boys attacked little 10 year old Yosephi and broke his arm. It was no school yard accident it was their concerted effort to maim him. We have not finished the wall yet, not by a long shot. Bricks and mortar are not free, even for defense of the helpless, and as usual we are out of money. But it will be done someday. I believe God will provide. If you want to help with the wall please go to our donate page or mail to Hesed at 36 West Main St Rochester N.Y. 14614. Thank you.
Wow it is hard to keep up! Our newest team will be in Malawi this December 2013. They will be the first team to occupy the new Central Building. They will sleep, eat and work right there in the Central Building in Hesed Village.
Hesed is also starting our second girl’s residence. The first girl’s house is full, as is the boy’s house but the boy’s house can be stretched to accommodate a couple more boys whereas the girl’s house is maxed out.
We are also beginning work on a corn mill building which will also house the mill worker. The corn mill is important to the surrounding villages for whom corn is a staple. At the present they must walk a great distance whenever they need to grind their corn into corn meal, so it will be a great help to them and a source of income to help care for our own kids.
We have recently been evaluated by the local social welfare office. They were very impressed but they wanted to see some more upgrades. Two things at the top of the “to do” list are a volley ball court for the girls and a soccer field for the boys. Flat land is a premium in hilling Mzuzu but we are going to try this December to lay out the field and court for the kids.
Perhaps the newest and arguably the biggest thing Hesed is getting into is evangelism on a scale not yet attempted by us. To that end we are endeavoring to mass produce steel church buildings, think pole barn with no sides, just a fairly big roofed structure about 30 by 50. The idea is to go into an unreached community for which we have at least an introduction and build the church during the day and do a crusade at night, hopefully after a couple of days leaving a new congregation behind. The new church group can, should they want to do so, fill in the walls of their building with the cheap local bricks that are found everywhere to make a proper looking church.
Our December 2013 team will work on the prototype building right in Hesed Village, this new building will then serve as our “factory” for the manufacture of additional “church kits” that are always ready to go to put up new churches when the Lord directs.
We intend to foster “First Century Christianity” in the new community and by that I mean the truth that disciples of Jesus make new disciples of Jesus. We will point out the neighboring villages as their field for planting and when they have had at least a few converts in the next village we will return to again plant a building and do a crusade, teach discipleship/evangelism and so on.
They will not be left alone without teaching and discipleship. The new church leaders will regularly be brought back to Hesed Village for days of intensive bible and leadership training.
Our own Bishop Samuel will assume overall leadership of the new churches.
We will be in Malawi the first part of December with a team, mostly from Bethel Fellowship, Rochester New York. Which by itself is reason to celebrate but this morning I was awakened by some additional good news…
The president is coming to our December [Central Building/ Bethel House] opening celebration! No I do not mean President Obama–the president of Malawi! Also because of her august presence we are also promised that the long anticipated electricity will be installed! Yea! It should be a very good time. Any of you that are not coming–why not?