by Joy Casey in Ethiopia

It is a long flight to Ethiopia in anybody’s book.  After leaving Seattle for Washington D.C. at 11 p.m. and arriving in Addis Ababa two days later at 7:15 a.m., our group was a little tired heading out of the airport for destinations south.  The goal the day of arrival is one thing:  STAY AWAKE.  After checking into our hotel and enjoying a leisurely lunch outdoors, there was not enough time left in the afternoon to  accomplish anything of value; and truthfully, we were not in any shape to do any activity that required critical thinking.

In order to keep our bodies moving, we took a boat tour of the nearby lake and saw bald eagles and masses of pelicans along with many, many different and interesting water fowl.  Hippos generally are doing their thing in the shallows, but had moved further away that day so we didn’t get to see those giant curiosities.  Finally, it was “safe” to head to our rooms, take a refreshing shower and close our eyes.

I attend a wonderful church, High Pointe Church, in the Puyallup-Graham area in Washington.  Our pastor has a huge heart to reach people with the Good News and planted High Pointe Church twenty years ago.  The Word is honored and sound teaching and discipleship are the cornerstones of corporate worship, small groups and community service.   Traveling with me on this whirlwind trip are two from our mission’s committee, Tim Covell (chairman) and Shannon Silvernail.  It is a privilege and a joy to introduce some of my church family to the people I hold close to my heart and to share the vision God has given to NewLife Ethiopia.  In a few days we will head north to the Tigray region of Ethiopia and catch a glimpse of an entirely different ministry.  All Kingdom work!

Tim and I felt refreshed after a long, sound sleep.  Shannon’s stomach was not cooperating with her, necessitating her staying behind while we headed out to hear what God was doing in two Oromo M*slim villages.

Tim saw the school children, met some of the missionaries and listened in while plans for construction of a missionary training center were finalized.

We then headed to a nearby village where a temporary church has been constructed and had coffee in the home of a church leader.  These were quick visits, but hopefully Tim got a taste of what rural village life is like and the challenges accompanying evangelism in this area.