10 Days, 5 Houses, 1 Discombobulated Action Team

This was our schedule over the past 10 days:

10/11/18- Old House, Macuti, Beira
11/11/18- New House, Ponta Geâ, Beira
12/11/18- Barrells’ House, Maputo
13/11/18- Air B n’ B, Nelspruit, South Africa
16/11/18- Barrells’ House, Maputo (again)
17/11/18- New House, Ponta Geâ, Beira (again)
20/11/18- Newer House, Macuti, Beira

It’s fair to say we’ve been around! This has been due to visa renewals and our supervisors moving house.

We had an unexpected early team holiday because we had to change our visas (bet the other Action Teams are jealous)! We may not have had fresh croissants or pet turtles, but we got to see the beauty of South Africa and its fantastic beasts. We still can’t believe we were able to go to the Kruger National Park or that we saw the Big 5 (lion, lepoard, rhino, elephant and buffalo) all before lunchtime. This time away was really refreshing for us as a team after our full-on month. It gave us a chance to talk more deeply with one another and enjoy relaxing together. We hope to continue feeling peaceful in Beira as we spend more time with God and each other.

In this blog post we wanted to share our Saturday mornings with you. We run an English club for the children of missionaries, most of whom are Brazilian. The club includes a Bible study, homework, crafts and games. The older kids are determined to beat Alex at a game of Jungle Speed, which they love almost as much as she does! The club has two groups, both studying the book of John. The younger ones are using crafts to do this because of the language barriers, while the older group is more discussion-based. We’re really enjoying getting to know them more each week, and are grateful for the opportunity to practise our Portuguese with them.

Next year, we’ll be involved in PEPEs (pre-schools), but this month, we got a taster session when we visited one in Mafambisse. This was our first experience in a rural area outside of Beira. The PEPE was in a very calm place, and the children were very enthusiastic at dancing and singing despite the sweltering heat in their classrooms. We helped to serve them lunch, which was pasta plus a fish head or tail, depending on how lucky you were.

5 culture shocks of Mozambique
1. The learning style of PEPEs – every lesson consists of repetition and lots of shouting. One student is asked to recite the numbers (for example) in order, the rest of the class shout them in reply, and then that student writes the numbers out.
2. Rei dos Reis Graduation attire- unlike our school graduations, where everyone wears a different dress, here it’s fashionable to all wear the same colour and look similar.
3. Teachers and students alike are very good dancers and they aren’t embarrased to show off their moves.
4. Crazy driving in Maputo- the road signs don’t correspond to the conditions on the road, which meant we were driving against the flow of traffic without warning.
5. You should NEVER come back from the beach shirtless (take note, Jack and Andrew).

What have you really enjoyed?
ALEX – I really enjoyed spending time with the Barrell family who are long term missionaries with BMS. Getting the chance to speak with Mark about being a Christian lawyer was really encouraging.
ANDREW – Fresh milk in South Africa.
JACK – Getting to know the missionary kids; one of the boys asked if I was leading his group last week. When I said no, he wanted to know when I would- “Can it be soon?”.
REBEKAH – I loved going back to South Africa again, seeing the beautiful scenery there and getting to explore Kruger Park for the day.

What has challenged you most?
ALEX – The vast change from the poverty we see everyday in Beira to being in shopping malls again in South Africa.
ANDREW – Finding out more about the issues and challenges facing Mozambique and also South Africa has been challenging, particularly learning of and seeing the enormous inequalities in South Africa, which you don’t hear about often but still exist.
JACK – Being asked to buy things or give food and money whenever we are in town. We don’t want to create a financial dependency but want to make a difference to the city we are living in.
REBEKAH – It has been quite hard surrounded by so much uncertainty, with our plans frequently changing and moving around a lot.

What are you looking forward to?
ALEX – Spending more time with our supervisors once we move in with them.
ANDREW – Getting to know the kids in the missionary kids’ club and working more at Wagna’s church.
JACK – Moving house for the last time and then having a firm base to go out and have a more focused approach to what we are doing here.
REBEKAH – Getting stuck into the church we have chosen here.

PRAYERS ANSWERED

  • We got our visas renewed with mininal hassle.
  • We’ve had more time to rest.
  • We’ve chosen a Church to get involved in.

PRAYER REQUESTS

  • That we will settle in to one home.
  • That we will find a new purpose in the changed school programme.
  • That we will be able to build our relationships with the missionary kids.

15 replies
  1. Lesley says:

    Great blog and fantastic to hear all your adventures! Hope you now have time to settle down and find a routine of some sort and get to know the people and children a bit more. How is the language learning coming on?

    Reply
  2. Esther says:

    Top notch blog! Praying that you guys get your visas sorted out and do good work! Love from Team France (and their freshly baked croissants)

    Reply
  3. Diane says:

    Great to get your update – praying for the whole team and especially Re – that you’ll be a real blessing and also learn much from your amazing experiences

    Reply
  4. Amanda Meldrum says:

    Wonderful to see you in Mozambique Alex and all the great work you and the rest of the team are involved in. Great photos. We are praying for you all from chilly Edinburgh. Amanda

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.