Trey has been asking to go camping at the scarp for a long time now. We finally set aside Boxing Day as the day to do it. We drove out to our favorite spot north of Namaasim and setup camp.
The above 360° photo is of us on the edge of the cliffs. Notice the pile of straw & sticks for the big bonfire. And now here’s the fire raging a few hours later!
In the morning a few early birds heading out to farm saw us and were perplexed by the idea of us sleeping out in the bush. They’d ask “what are you doing?” and I’d reply “we built a farm house (tent) and slept here.” “WHY?” was what I heard over and over again.
The closest thing I could say to “just for fun” in Mampruli roughly translates as “Because it was our heart’s desire.”
As in years past, the expat doctors at BMC visited patients on the wards on Christmas Eve and passed out oranges. This year it was just the Cahills and us and we were joined by our German friend Mattis.
One thing we did differently this time was that William read the Christmas story in Mampruli in each ward. It was nice to be able to communicate the reason we followers of Jesus celebrate this holiday. For many is was probably the first time they heard the story in a clearly communicated in their heart language.
KJ’s favorites were a toy cell phone from her brother and a baby doll & teddy bear from grandparents. Trey was predictably pumped about LEGOs and books. Heidi got some new athletic wear for our hikes and frisbee playing. William got more coffee & coffee accessories.
KJ’s grown a lot since last December so we needed to update our family’s prayer card with a new photo.
You can download a hi-res version printable 4×6 version of the card via this link: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/11065998/2015-Haun-Family-Photo/haun-family-prayer-card-2017.jpg
If you’d like to just download a hi-res version of our 2016 family photo, it’s available here: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/11065998/2015-Haun-Family-Photo/20161217-whaun-2457.jpg
After the events in Côte d’Ivoire, my parents drove 15 hours (!) back to Ghana with me and spent 10 days with us in Nalerigu. The photo gallery below is photos they took while they were here.
A couple weeks ago I drove to Côte d’Ivoire to meet my parents and attend the 50th anniversary of Baptist Work in that West African nation. The Baptist Convention of Ivory Coast (UNEBAM-CI) put on the jubilee celebration and invited IMB missionaries who served (or currently serve) in the country. It was a massive reunion with so many of our friends from the 80s, 90, and 00s.
Some of the past missionaries that attended the three day event were my parents, Ted & Francis York and Ed & Greta Pinkston. The Yorks were our next door neighbors in Bouaké in the 90s and some of our best friends. The Pinkstons were the first Southern Baptist missionaries appointed to Côte d’Ivoire in 1967! It was wonderful to see them again.
I was so impressed by the respect and honor the Convention showed my parents and their colleagues. All the alumni missionaries were awarded honorary diplomas and gold medals. Ed Pinkston received the highest honor and was dressed as a chief – complete with crown and golden scepter!
Part of the weekend’s events included a parade of nearly 1000 Baptists out to the conference grounds and a graduation ceremony for the UNEBAM-CI’s seminary students. Several of the graduates were young men that the past missionaries had led to Christ or discipled.
In fact, I was blown away by the number of current pastors who came up to my parents and the other missionaries to thank them for investing their lives in them. I was seeing the seeds Jesus spoke of in Matthew 13:8 that “fell on fertile soil, and they produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as had been planted!“