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Showing posts from June, 2007

Sabbatical Journey

One year ago I was granted a sabbatical leave from Drew University, and I returned to Drew this month refreshed and restored. Mine was an active sabbatical that included two mission trips to Malawi, one educational trip to Korea, fund-raising trips to San Francisco, Houston and Washington D.C., two trips to receive special recognitions, the release of new book, and the establishment of a permanent mission center in Malawi ---all recorded on my Blog and highlighted below:

After my first trip to Malawi in August 2005 with my then 15 year-old daughter, Rachel, I felt called to return—at least for a year—to international relief and development work, particularly in relation to pastoral education and AIDS. The opportunity presented itself last summer, and with the support of my Dean at Drew, I was available to respond and engage. There is nothing like a sabbatical to rotate one’s tires and re-energize through a change of pace, focus and meaningful activity. I felt like I got back to a w…

Open Conference for Korean Pastors

Open Conference for Korean Pastors in New York City

Presentation on CitiHope International: Food aid for Malawi

Ahn-nyung ha-she-yoh! [Hello]:

I would like to share with you what I shared with pastors in Korea in April of this year. After lecturing at Hyupsung University, my wife and I led a 4-day pastors retreat on the spirituality of Henri Nouwen who was my teacher. During dinner conversation, I shared with Pastor Kwon my ministry in Malawi feeding AIDS orphans and abandoned children. After I shared this message, Rev. Kwon, told me God spoke to him very clearly to begin supporting Citihope every month with a $1,000 offering from his church to feed hungry orphans in Malawi.

I shared the same message of how AIDS and famine were affecting the lives of one million orphans in Malawi, and what we could do to help them with Rev. and Mrs. Jongbok Kim, pastor of Yeonsoo Methodist Church, and Rev. and Mrs. Jong Soo Kim, Pastor of Sheshin Methodist Church. Tey too said they wanted to help…

Activities in Mzuzu

In Mzuzu, the largest city in Northern Malawi, with over 100,000 people, the rest of the Osborne members were also busy. Divided into two teams, a construction team and a first aid / sewing team, they worked independently in the morning, but came together in the afternoon, to do additional ministry. The construction team helped pour a concrete floor for Mzuzu Baptist Church, and build a foundation for a building at FOMCO Orphanage, where they also installed a basketball goal, all the while taking breaks to spend valuable time playing, singing and telling Bible stories to the orphans.

Meanwhile, the ladies offered first aid training and AIDS seminars at two of the secondary schools in Mzuzu, where they also gave much needed school supplies. Several area hospitals were also visited, with medical supplies being donated at each location. Stuffed animals and toys were given to children in the pediatric wards as well. Sewing machines were donated to the women’s guild of Livingstonia Synod, a…

Gabriel's Report for Days 4 and 5

Here’s a brief update on the Osborne mission team activities this week:

Yesterday, team A received sewing lessons at Katawa CCAP; it was a wonderful moment. The team donated a sewing machine and the women were very excited. Threads, fabric, elastic, and school materials were donated to the church at Katawa, which offers Day Care, pre-primary, primary and secondary schools?

Today we are winding up the activities in Mzuzu by spreading the Good News of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in the streets of Mzuzu. Tomorrow we will be heading for Rumphi Kasasa Community Based Care Center and Rumphi District Hospital to cheer up the sick.

Team B started painting the Cook Guest House, and Team A was at Kanjika Club for people living with disabilities and at Viyele CCAP visiting the elders feeding program.

This is just a glimpse of what the teams are doing in Malawi. I should say that is it a blessing to have the entire OBC Team here with us. As you know that it becomes difficult for us to have t…

Gabriel's Report for Days 2 and 3

On Thursday the ministry team (A) visited Kutemwa Orphan Care Center in the morning and Mzuzu Central Hospital in the afternoon. Dolls and toys were given to children in pediatrician ward. But before we went to Pediatrician wards, we visited the nutrition department which is involved in making soy flour and is being given to children and other people who are on ARV treatment. The soya is mixed with corn, ground nuts and beans to make it tastier. Cooking oil is also added to the soya flour for increased ingredients.

The construction team (B)has been very busy, and the local people are very excited and encouraged to see whites getting involved in construction. It is challenging to see a person like Ricky Bates working so hard on construction. At FOMCO Orphan Care center, the foundation is being raised up.

At Mzuzu Baptist Church, the hard flooring has been completed and now the smooth course is in progress.

At Mzuzu Central Prison, a soccer ball was donated and Rob shared the Good News of…

Medical Team in Livingstonia

Dr. Terry Daniel led a team made up of a medical team and a children’s outreach team, 75 miles north of Mzuzu, to perhaps, the most beautiful view in all of Malawi, Livingstonia. After successfully ascending the mountain, while going around twenty “hairpin bends” the children’s outreach team taught classes on first aid and abstinence education in the schools, and VBS to the village children. The medical team worked at the mission hospital delivering babies, performing minor surgeries, and doing routine checkups. They also offered services to the villages surrounding Livingstonia. Dr. Daniel and Jay Cline, a medical student at Wake Forrest University, had the opportunity to preach at two of the churches

Letters from Sarah

Dear friends & family,

We made it safe and sound to Malawi! The flights were wonderful – no time wasted waiting around on layovers, as we pretty much were able to walk off one plane and onto the next. We made it very smoothly through customs. Our few complaints were that Rob got a migraine and Sarah visited the restroom eleven times on the flight from Rome to Ethiopia. They are both feeling much better.

Please continue to pray for our health, as a handful of people have experienced some yucky side effects of the malaria medicine we are taking.

Dear friends and family:

We enjoyed a very warm welcome from Gabriel & Dennis from CitiHope in the Malawi airport at 12:30pm (6:30a at home), as they greeted us all with a bunch of colorful flowers. From there, they drove us to Ilala Lodge in Mzuzu, Malawi, arriving at 6:45pm, making our total travel time from Greensboro to Malawi 32 hours! A delicious three-course dinner was waiting for us at the lodge including mushroom soup, braided rolls…

Osborne Mission Team Departs for Malawi

Osborne Baptist Church in Eden, NC, embarked this month on their third mission trip to Malawi, in partnership with Hopegivers and CitiHope International. What follows are summary reports from team leader, Rob Robbins:

After several months of fundraising and preparation, nineteen members of Osborne Church left on Tuesday, June 5th for nearly two weeks of ministry opportunities in Malawi, Africa. Two others followed on Sunday, June 10th bringing the total to twenty-one mission volunteers.

Partnering with CitiHope and Hopegivers Intl, the team had several goals to accomplish, the first of which was to take as much useful material and supplies as possible. After listing the supplies needed in the church bulletin, the donations began to pour in. In order to maximize the amount which could be taken, each person was limited to one piece of personal baggage to be checked on, with the other one full of supplies. The supplies included several boxes of medicine, sewing machines, recreation equi…