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Report of September 2011 mission trip to Kenya and Uganda

The objectives set for this trip were rooted in the initiation of a chapter of the North American School of Theology, Dr. Joe B. Maddox, founder and president. What initiated this was the fact that Community Life International (CLI) is primarily seeking to root itself in facilitating initiatives from within the Black Church toward cross cultural ministry; it makes since to actually do so when the opportunity presents itself. Dr. Maddox, being a member of the Board of Directors of CLI, only makes the matter more intensely practical. The trip was from September 09 – 22, 2011.

• CLI did not make all the arrangements for the trip, as Dr. Maddox is the initiator of this trip, we traveled and participated in the arrangements he made. All went very well, with the usual complications with communications. We departed on September 09, 2011. The team that traveled together was Dr. Maddox, Anthony Hill and C Danny Johnson.

• We departed from Knoxville Airport. The tickets for Hill and Johnson were secured through Empire Travel of Elizabethton; TN. Mike Peters is the owner/operator and has worked with me for many years in securing itineraries for such trips. I forget who Dr. Maddox got his tickets through.

• We arrived in Nairobi, via Ethiopia Airways on the 11th. Dr. Maddox was picked up by Rev. Makuthi and taken to Salama, Kenya where he would unite with other lecturers for the week of instruction. The classes were to be taught simultaneously in Kenya and Uganda. At the time of departure, Sunday the 12th, we were joined by Dr. Tommy Mimms of Knoxville, TN.

• In taking this trip, I went with four key objectives. (1) Research the state and activity of the school started by Rev. Joe B. Maddox, the North American School of Theology (NAST). (2) Research the possibility of activating a real-time video link that would allow for internet video classes. (3) Meet with Community Life Uplift Organization Board Chair and establish a clear understanding as to how we should seek to work together. (4) Deliver the funds collected for the Famine Relief to Community Life Uplift for distribution in the needed areas.

• The North American School of Theology (NAST) has been operating for five (5) years out of Machakos, Kenya. Dr. Maddox was approached by the President of the Ugandan Baptist Convention to set up a similar school in Uganda. This trip provided the opportunity for the first classes to take place. The site was in Seeta, Uganda, just outside of the capital of Kampala.

• The classes offered were “O.T. Theology” with Dr. Tommy Mimms lecturer.” The Doctrine of Grace” by Dr. Maddox and “A Theology of Stewardship” by Rev. C Danny Johnson. The initial report of 200 registrants was not realized, but there were 65 that participated through the week of classes. The classes were presented in a rotation, with each instructor presenting each day in a different sequence. Usually the classes were completed by 12:30 pm, followed by lunch. After lunch, an hour of question & answer followed.

• The classes were animated and received with truly impressive appreciation. It was stated almost daily, how unusual and impactful the information was. As one student put it, “we thought we knew the Bible, but I see we did not.”

• This was a year for graduations for I believe over twenty students from Salama. They traveled from Kenya to Uganda for the ceremony. One young man traveled by bus for 20 hours, from Mombasa, Kenya without complaint.

• The plan being entertained is to open classes in other surrounding countries and utilize the graduates from existing schools to assist in establishing new schools. This makes the structure missionary by nature and potentially powerful in its ultimate impact on the minds and lives of people. The emphasis in the school is one of motivation and empowerment.

• The next objective was the matter of video classes. This was a complex endeavor; many factors had to be considered. For example location and cost of initial equipment for broadband internet was a troubling factor. Security concerns at the location for protection of the equipment. In any case, God provided the solution. We were able to secure both a sight and the needed local cooperation to get the project completed, we are praying about the financing and how the Lord will provide.

 

The basic understanding developed was:

i. We will work together in arranging mission trips to the Rift Valley in Kenya to participate in ministries that would be predetermined.

ii. These ministries would not be limited to church meetings, but would instead take church to the streets and include some very practical aspects and training that lives might be changed spiritually, emotionally and practically.

iii. As teams arrive, CLUO will orient the team and then lead throughout.

iv. All cost should be covered prior to arrival, itinerary having been reviewed.

 

Famine Relief:

This became the biggest problem of the trip. Due to an oversight on my own, I had Counter Checks drawn on our account that described the receiver as Community Life & Uplift Organization, which was incorrect. The “&” made it wrong and there was nothing that could be done to overcome that mistake. Ultimately, we had to cancel the checks, with the help of Dr. Randy Huffines and then have the money wired to CLUO. But in the end, the amount of $3,900.00 was wired and received (took four days) into CLUO’s account.

The actual distribution will take place the week of October 10th. Dickson Talam, National Director of CLUO and Dr. Kip Elolia (Boards Liaison and Professor at Emmanuel School of Religion) will oversee and take pictures noting the contribution.

v. CLIMA will seek to provide some financial resources for scholarships toward education cost where possible; details can be determined at the time.

 

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