The Lord is risen indeed. Alleluia. Alleluia.
Since our last newsletter from language school in Morogoro, Easter has come to Tanzania. The rains finally have come, bringing with them flowers and greenness to the countryside. We pray that your Eastertide has been filled with the same generation of new hope and expectations.
Good Friday was especially sad as at the age of 90 and after a long illness, Sandra’s father passed away. Our daughter Elizabeth and her husband, Wilson, had visited him shortly before he died, and they returned for the funeral. We are eternally grateful for their representation.
Tanzania basically shuts down for Easter, so we took the opportunity to return to Morogoro to visit our friend, the Lutheran pastor, Herb Hafermann. He is an American who has lived in Tanzania for over forty years. We went with him on Easter Day to a very large Maasai Church that we had visited one year ago. It was packed with over 400 people present. The Spirit was overflowing. In all, 64 were baptized.
The main purpose of this newsletter is to welcome Bishop Mdimi Mhogolo to the U.S., in particular to our home Diocese of Atlanta. He has already left Tanzania and has spent some time in New York City. He is now in the Washington, D.C. area. He will visit Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria before leaving on April 22nd for Atlanta where he will stay until April 29th. He will bring warm greetings from the people of the Diocese of Central Tanganyika. Bishop Mhogolo is deeply spiritual and deeply committed to the 192 parishes of the Dodoma region. He hopes to raise funds for several diocesan projects. These include educational, medical, and humanitarian needs. We have also sent some of our concerns with Bishop Mhogolo. He is a visionary, a planner, and a strong leader. We urge you to listen attentively to learn as much as you can about East Africa and the role for the church in this area.
Many of you have been asking for over a year how you can support us and our work. Up until now, we have asked for your patience and prayers as we tried to discern where to focus our efforts. We finally feel that we are ready to jump in with both feet in our respective areas of concern. In that wonderful way of the Spirit, at the same time our friend and former priest, the Reverend Charles Roper, with the blessing of Bishop Alexander, has been forming a support team from the Atlanta Diocese to co-ordinate fundraising and gift-giving for us. Our next communiqué will include the theology school and medical concerns for which we are asking financial help.
Please revisit our website, www.mccannmission.org, to see pictures of Bishop Mdimi Mhogolo, as well as new pictures in the Dodoma folder, including the burnt-up maize crops. This is due to the lack of rains in January after a very promising beginning in Advent. Widespread and severe famine is predicted because this lack of January rain has affected not only Dodoma, but vast areas of Tanzania.
Sandra is giving the final exams of the quarter this week. Martin is putting the final touches on his new lab and has begun teaching histopathology at the Laboratory Training School at Mvumi Mission Hospital. We celebrated our 33rd anniversary on April 15th-- tempus fugit when you’re having fun! We are looking forward with great anticipation to the visit of Elizabeth and Wilson this coming Sunday. Please keep us before that great throne and drop us a line or two.
Pasaka njema (Happy Easter),
Sandy and Martin