Thursday, April 25, 2013

2013 Zambia Blog Update

We just finished our debrief for today, Tuesday April 23rd. We lead a day camp in Teta - a small village in the bush. We worked with 23 orphans that the little church takes care of. This is the same church that we put on the steel roof for in 2010.

The kids started out very distant, but by lunch time they were having a blast. Some very cool ministry happened today as the team worked together really well. Brandi is doing an amazing job directing the camp. Jack shared Christ today, Josh led games, and Tim and Nicole led worship and everybody had a part. It's amazing to see how God uses each person in their gifting.

It's a blast to see God at work. Tomorrow we take these kids to a local park with a waterfall. Then Thursday, our camp begins in Serenje.

- John Alford -

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Pictures from Zambia 2012

Please visit the following website to look at pictures from this year's trip!

Zambia 2012 Team

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Zambia Update

Our team had a great day and an amazing night.

I had a chance to interview Chalwe, an orphan at the Hope Center.  He
was the initial student enrolled in the Back to School Program.  He
told me he wanted to go to school so he could get a job and support
his sister.   When his father died, they were split up and he has not
seen her in a while.   Pretty moving to see this 13 year old's eyes
well up with tears as he is sharing about his life.

And then tonight we had a devotional gathering with the pastors and
their wives.  Pastor Edwin of Teta church shared his testimony and
then one of our team shared as well.  What was supposed to be one
closing song turned into about 15 songs of loud, joyful praising as
the Zambian believers took turns leading a song.   Though there is
only about 30 of sounded like 500.   What a privelidge to be
surrounded by Zambian believers singing praise to God in their native

- Zambia Team -

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Zambia Team Update

Yesterday, we began by joining the pastors and their wives for their morning devotion. Words cannot describe how amazing it is to pray with them and listen to them worship God. We then journeyed to Teta to do vacation Bible school with the children there.   As a craft, we did coloring sheets and made colorful crosses that they can hang as ornaments.  The orphans are so poor that these simple things captivate them.  Even the older children love to use crayons to color pictures.  Jack Archer shared the gospel complete with object lessons.

It was clearly evident they enjoyed the time that we spent with them, because a little girl tried to get on our bus to leave with us.  Our first day of VBS at the Hope Center was cut short, but the children still enjoyed playing games and doing introductions. God is definitely moving in the hearts of the children and our team.  

We interviewed one of the orphans and the details of his story broke our hearts. He shared about his parents dieing, about his abusive caretaker who would beat him, and how a grandfather finally came to his rescue and got him connected to the Hope Center.   Wish you could have seen his smile as he told about how much of a difference the Hope center has made in his life.  

It is so amazing to see the passion and love the Zambians have for Christ and it has been such an inspiration to us all!

Zambia Team

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Zambia Team Update

This morning we attended a special church dedication service at Teta, which is where Brookside helped build the roof. It was such a rich blessing to be sung over by 200 Zambian believers!!

Up next on the trip is a visit to Kundalila Falls with the orphans. This waterfall is only about an hour away from Serenje but many of the children have never had the chance to visit this beautiful place!!

Continued prayer appreciated to be the hands and feet of Jesus this week...

2012 Zambia Team

Friday, April 27, 2012

Zambia 2012 Update

Traveling to Zambia is always quite eventful. After traveling over 20
hours, having very tight layovers, and losing four suitcases, we
arrived in Lusaka. We did lots of things during our first morning in
Zambia. We got our food and supplies, met the Fairview Baptist team,
and got our four lost bags. After a very productive and eventful
morning we drove to Serenje. We had dinner at the Mapontella, which is
where half of the team is staying. We also got unpacked and got to bed
at about 1am.

Our first day in Serenje was GREAT! There were 4 main events:

1. We met the caretakers (Godwin and Dorene) and we met the kids! The
kids welcomed us with several songs and we also got to play some games
with them! One of the most exciting moments was during duck duck
goose…Erin had an awesome wipeout! In her defense, it was because she
was having so much fun loving the kids. Some of the men played soccer
with the boys, while most of the women played with and hugged the
kids. Everyone on our team has their own unique gifts to offer…today
we were definitely blessed with Devin’s joy, Pam’s love, and Jen
Oliver’s compassion. All three were SO evident.

2. Ketty shared with Chelsea a major prayer request. Her and Pastor
Navice’s 3-year-old granddaughter, Juanita, was severely burned last
week. Her burn is so severe that her skin burnt almost completely off
from her bellybutton down. The hospital couldn’t do anything, so she
is lying in Navice’s house in pain. Amy cut up some ibuprofen to make
it child-sized and explained how to correctly use it. Mike figured out
how to make sure the wound wouldn’t get infected. The two of them and
Marjorie went over to the house and treated the little girl as best
they could. Please pray for healing.

3. Brandi trained the rest of us for the camp. She has put SO much
work into Camp CHRISTOS and we are blessed to have her knowledge,
insight, and love on our team. We are all extremely excited to see her
planning in action with the kids. The Brookside and Fairview teams
prepared together for a skit, some games, and lots of other
activities. God is going to work in HUGE ways this week! Keep praying!

4. Pastor Navice shared his testimony. He has an amazing story about
how the Lord saved him from a life of drunkenness and anger. It was
great to listen and learn from him. His faith and joy in the Lord are
so encouraging, and what he shared was something many of us needed to
hear. It really is a delight to learn from our Zambian friends. They
have so much to teach us!

2012 Zambia Team

Saturday, April 7, 2012

April Update

Please be praying for this spring's team as they serve in Zambia between April 23 - May 6!

The Brooksiders participating are...

Erin Achebach
Mark Adams
John Alford
Jack Archer
Carrie Bailey
Michael Bailey
Pam Bass
Susan Breese
Brandi Goeser
Jenny Hofer
Devin Holdorf
Amy Kieser
Mike Lempke
Jennifer Oliver
Chelsea Wax
Tim Wiebe

In addition to pastoral training and training of pastors wives, Brooksiders are joining members from Fairview Baptist Church in Lusaka, Zambia to give the children of the Hope Center a camp experience they will never forget. We're excited to launch a three day camp entitled 'Camp CHRISTos'! Be praying that the children are shown God's love throughout this camp experience and learn valuable lessons to strengthen their spiritual walk with Christ!