Today we visited Makomba for our Sunday Service. For once we had no duties other than to bring best wishes from the UK and to listen to various speeches from church members. No surprise sermons to deliver like Saturday!
Makomba is a small but growing church in the bush – Tim’s first experience of heading off the main road into a world where white men are rarely seen. As we drove past along the hot dusty track, we past little settlements. When we were spotted, the children would call out ‘white man’ in Temne, one of the local languages (sounds like Oporto, but I’m not sure of the spelling). This was accompanied by smiles and requests for sweets and 100 Leones (there are around 6000 Leone to 1 UK pound). The further out into the bush we went, the houses changed with more and more thatched mud huts.
The church is one I have seen changed every time I have come here. It now has a new roof courtesy of our driver Francis who is also a builder. He is a popular man in Makomba – hard working, honest and always cheerful.
The minister of the church is Victor Simbo, a bubbly committed man. He is clearly doing a great job of encouraging his congregation and caring for the local community. The service was an interesting blend of African style singing and drumming and old English hymns. I’ll post a video another day – the connection is not so good right now and bed beckons! He also preached a great sermon on taking risks – it must of been good as I was sitting in the sun and in risk of falling asleep – and yet he kept me awake!
When we got back to the Family Kingdom, we we met by the sister of one of our congregation in the UK. We’d brought some medicine over for her, and had a lovely time talking to her about her family and life in Sierra Leone.
We then spent the rest of the day trying to talk to family on Skype with mixed results – it is wonderful being able to chat for free, but the timelag causes confusion and hilarity and going for a walk along the beautiful Lumley Beach.
All in all, we can’t believe that we’ve only been here for 2 days. It feels like many weeks. It is a wonderful place despite its great poverty and problems.