Philip's Kenya Blog - Saturday (Last Day)

Just a few words about the last day in Kenya before I embarked on the all night journey home. It was lovely to get up a little later on Saturday, with nothing to prepare. We left the Mission to Seamen at about 10, with Moses’s whole family, so 7 of us in the car. (Very good car.) We took the ferry from Mombasa Island to the mainland and drove a few miles to a place called Ukunda. You can find it easily on google maps. We visited Christmas and his family in his vicarage and church. Just two weeks ago, on Sunday 3rd, the two armed guards at the gate of the compound were shot dead with their own weapons - possibly terrorism, more likely gangsters wanting the weapons. The service was in full flo

Philip's Kenya Blog - Friday

Just two morning sessions today. We spent most of the time looking at how you get from understanding a passage to preaching a sermon - things like stating and explaining your teaching points, getting the big idea of your passage across, illustrating and applying, getting and keeping people’s attention, etc. It was great fun. This is the most engaged and responsive group I’ve worked with over the four times I’ve done this sorts of workshops in Africa. Probably some of that is down to the fact that this is a city and they are a more educated group. But it is also because there is much that is healthy and good in the Anglican Church of Kenya. One of the sharpest men told me that I’ve been doing

Philip's Kenya Blog - Thursday

First session this morning was the medical doctor again. Good stuff, and a nice humorous light touch, but quite hard going at just under two hours without a break. Then I taught a Bible overview and we managed to get from Genesis to Kings by lunch. Lunch was . . . heavy. Their staple food is called (I think) Ugali, or something like that. It’s a slab of maize stodge - I imagine you’d get something similar by mixing cornflour with a little boiling water. Hard going, but the Kenyans love it. After lunch we rushed through Kings to Malachi, then I preached from Mark 10 and the little children and the rich young man: “Those who come to Jesus with nothing go away with everything” and “those who co

Philip's Kenya Blog - Wednesday

Sorry to hear about the weather in England. Normally such weather is reserved for my summer holidays. It does sound even more special than usual. Here it’s about 27 degrees every day - pretty perfect, really. It’s been quite cloudy, but bright times too. Today I managed to fit in a swim in the centre’s pool - lovely to feel a whole day wash off you. I did four lengths, which for me is very keen and impressive. Yes, it’s tough here. Today’s pattern very similar to yesterday’s. Lovely opening exposition of Mark 6:34 from Jonathan: What did Jesus see? People as sheep needing a shepherd. (So who is the shepherd? Jesus, of course.) What did Jesus feel? Compassion (in contrast to the disciples). W

Philip's Kenya Blog - Tuesday

I’m told this is becoming a blog. I believe that counts as promotion. Thanks again for lovely messages and news - really nice to feel in touch from 4000 miles away. So great to know you’re praying for me. It’s wonderful to feel well supported. Today another really positive and encouraging day. Timetable today: up early to prepare; breakfast at 8; walk to the centre for 9 and opening devotions with an excellent short exposition on Romans 12:1-2 from a local vicar and wonderful singing of ‘Just as I am’; teach and preach with a 30 min break from about 9.30 to 1; lunch; 2.15 to 3.30ish a rather grim talk on ‘Anglicanism’ from another Mzungu in Mombasa; then our host takes us to visit Fort Jesus

Philip's Kenya Blog - Monday

Just a short one today - don’t want you getting bored. Thanks for messages received. So encouraging, thank you for loving and praying for me, and glad Sunday was good at home. My Bible reading this morning was Isaiah 44. It really is a stunning piece of writing. Teaching started today. Timing and attendance were remarkably good by African standards. By the end of lunch we were running only one hour late. Very few wandered away during the sessions. I told them it was Kenya one Uganda nil! The venue is good. Too much food - the 5:2 diet clearly won’t work here. I have somewhat less teaching time than I expected, but I’ll just go with the flow and we’ll do what we can. It is a good group - ab

Philip's Kenya Blog - Sunday

Sunday evening, bed beckoning. Saturday we were shown round some of Mombasa. The best and most moving moment was seeing the memorial to Johann Ludwig Krapf and his family’s graves. Krapf was a German (Mennonite?) Christian who was sent to Kenya’s east coast by CMS in 1944. A brilliant linguist, he gave the country its first Swahili dictionary and Bible. There were no Christians here and he started from scratch, preaching the gospel and freeing slaves from the Arabs. Within six months he had buried his wife and 12-year-old daughter, but he simply trusted the Lord and persevered. He was the first white man to see Mount Kenya and Kilimanjaro. (They didn’t believe him back home!) You feel that A

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