Today has been an interesting day. We had evaluation time with Leviticus and James this morning, then went to eat at the nicest hotel in town. It was so different to see things from the Mundo side of Arua, where everything is nice and clean and fancy. All 6 of us had a big lunch, complete with pizza, burgers and fries, milkshakes, and real brewed coffee...all for 40 bucks. Not too bad for the most expensive place in town. But it was nice to talk with Karen, the director of missions for the central region of AIM about how things are going, what we're learning, etc. It was quite a breath of fresh air. We're now at the internet cafe where our friends here are making us pizza for free, just because they like us. It's interesting to see the relationships we're building here in the most random places.
Yesterday we ministered at Otravu secondary school, which had the most interesting dynamic we've seen so far. Everything was funny. Laughing during altar call, serious skits, and the praise songs really confused me. It was hard to keep their attention and it felt like nothing was getting through to them. Then we had a huge response at the end and got to pray with a ton of students. We finally started to understand this dynamic today when we found out that much of the student population was Catholic or Muslim, and that they often laugh to cover up their discomfort. That was really interesting to me, that we made them uncomfortable. I guess that that is a very common dynamic up north, where there is more Islamic influence from the Sudan.
It was also encouraging to hear from Karen why exactly they have made our program the way it is. Sometimes traveling and teaching doesn't seem like the most effective way to reach people. But she explained to us that we have the opportunity to reach a wider group if we do it this way, especially since spending all of our time in one archdeaconry may stir up jealously, rivalry, etc., and it's important that we let the diocese rise up as a group by spreading our influence. She also told us that fresh teaching is very hard to come by, because many of these remote areas have very little exposure to other teaching. Please pray for us, that we would be mindful of this, and only speak what the Lord has for us to say!Thanks for your thoughts, everyone. I miss and love you all and hope to hear from you soon.