Blog Archives: January 2015 — December 2015

When Our Souls are Stretched to the Bursting

November 11, 2015
Janell Rardon
“Transformation is not happenstance; it is a revolution of the soul. Doing something over and over, being somewhere again and again, saying yes and yes and yes to what we said yes to before, we find, is suddenly no answer to the questions of today for us. We stop being whoever it was who began this journey. We are not now who we were. We don’t want any longer to be who we’re supposed to be. Our souls stretch to the bursting point and home becomes foreign soil. Somehow, without ever knowing that it happened, we awake to find ourselves ...


November 10, 2015
Andrea Alvord
What does it mean to be sorry?  To feel sorry for someone?  You might think that we, as extremely (materially) privileged people of the Global North, would come to Africa and see (material) poverty as it doesn’t exist in the United States and feel sorry for the people here.  This is not what happened during my pilgrimage.  The people have been sorry for me.  A simple expression, a simple word, “Sorry,” has overwhelmed me through the sincerity of the mouths that have uttered it. On my return to the Joy Village following the mama’s spiritual ...

Mammas Filled to Overflowing

November 09, 2015
Sheryl Wood
Sometimes, in the Kingdom of God you can desire to glean the spirit of another...another in the world with whom you can share the air and break bread together in laughter. That is what happened when six mazungas (white people) and nine Africans gathered at Fish Eagle in Kenya for a retreat. In the beginning, the women from the different worlds timidly approached each other. It only took about four hours into the first day before heartfelt stories of redemption, the unequipped feeling of raising children, illnesses such as HIV and cancer, and ...

The Power of Love

November 05, 2015
Kelly Alcorn
Have you ever held the hand of an abandoned child? One with big, brown eyes and a pearly white smile. So loving and sweet they just melt your heart. These past two weeks have been filled with such joy. We have been welcomed by the Joy Village Children and their mamas with open hearts. They are such a loving group. You would never guess these children have lived in unsafe, neglectful environments prior to their current home. Many have been sexually and physically abused by their families of origin. Some, were even abandoned. For the past five ...

Pennina's House of Faith

November 03, 2015
Susan Rawls
Last week, I had the pleasure of spending the night with Pennina and her ten wonderful children. As soon as I walked into her very clean home, I saw pictures of Jesus, Bible verses, and children's artwork decorating the walls. I felt right at home as God's presence filled the entire place. The children treated me like an important guest and serenaded me with songs and silly giggles. There was joy among the children as they cleaned and shined their shoes and did their homework. Pennina told me that God gave her a vision years ago that she ...

Gifts and Skills are Not Enough, but God Is

November 01, 2015
Bill Rawls
Kenya, Oct 28 Today, I talked through the disappointments of the mission field with my team members.  I also saw things that cannot be fixed clinically, such as the souls contained in the diseased or congenitally incomplete bodies of some of the patients at Nazareth Hospital.  What these individuals have already endured, I cannot imagine. Today, I met with a 21 year old man who has a congenital condition called extrophy of the bladder.  His urinary bladded was never formed in his mother's womb.  He was left with a bowl which sticks out of ...

Some Things are Better Unspoken

October 23, 2015
Rudy Miller
                  We certainly live in a world moving towards “social correctness.” That’s very understandable. Yet one wonders if we are trying to remove the realities of life from our world. A quick glance at the morning paper reveals the folks who have “passed away,” “gone to a higher place,” “gone to his heavenly home.” I guess that is correct, but is something missing? Just last week I received a report from Nazareth Hospital in Nairobi. Although the report was filled with useful financial statistics my eye caught a ...

Our Most Recent Miracles

July 14, 2015
Becky Lyle Pinkard
We would like to introduce you to 11 miracles. These are the newest children to arrive at Joy Children's Village. All of the children were rescued from the very northern area of Kenya where tribal wars have wreaked death, destruction and loss, leaving each of these children with no home or family to care for them. But now they are home. God is good and the Kingdom has been changed. Feast upon these miracles of our loving God.   Achuu Ambrose Angele Francis Joseph Lobeiye Mamo Naomi Papaiyo ...

July 2015 Newsletter

July 13, 2015
Becky Lyle Pinkard
Our July newsletter is available now. Read about what it means to "come of age" in Kenyan tradition, our HIV/AIDS work in remote Masai warrior country and more. Read the July newsletter here.

A New Beginning

July 08, 2015
Caroline English
The miracle of birth is a beautiful and honest beginning. But it is also a beginning that can become saturated with trials and tribulations Juliana is a 30-year-old Kenyan woman who has become trapped into a corner of sorrow and despair. She is lost in the recent death of her two children. She is trapped by the constant memories of her abusive husband. And she is overwhelmed with the unborn baby girl with whom she is pregnant. When Judy and I visited Juliana, depression hung from her face. As she told me about her oldest son’s death, she ...

Finding Heaven on a Pilgrimage

July 07, 2015
Susan LaSante
Have you ever been to heaven?  Well, I visited there yesterday and it was just beautiful. Some of this may sound a little corny and you may not understand, but just believe me.  I was in heaven yesterday.  My first stop in heaven was the Masai Market.  Some of you know I hate to shop, so it may not equate, that I would call it a stop in heaven, but let me explain.  One of the most stressful places in the world for me, is shopping in the market in Africa, but yesterday was different.  I used a different buying strategy and it worked.  One ...

Karibu Kenya: Welcome to Kenya

July 06, 2015
Jane Friddell
The first day "on the job" was to do home visits to HIV positive patients.  My experience of a home visit was limited to what we perform in the U.S.; a worker runs into a home, asks questions, checks their cell phone, writes down notes and runs out the door to the next appointment. What I experienced in Kenya, with my on the job training, was an education on the potential and importance of an empathetic visit. My first assignment was for myself and another team member to join a counselor from the Holy Family Center to visit a woman whom, ...

True Friendship Goes Deep

July 03, 2015
Susan LaSante
What does friendship mean to you?  What would you do for a friend?  I would like to tell you a story about friendship.  Our last home visit was with two women, Sarah and Miriam. The sitting room was the largest we had visited all day.  Jane my new American friend and I sat and waited, as Ann, a social worker spoke to the woman in Kiswahili.  Ann explained to us that she had been counseling them, since they were coming to be tested, to see if they were HIV positive.  Sarah had been encouraging her friend for sometime, so they could be tested ...

11 New Children Arrive at Joy Village

June 05, 2015
Rudy Miller
Tuesday evening eleven new children arrived at the Joy Village from Marsabit and Loyengalani in northern Kenya. We were told the journey took 15 hours across rugged terrain. These areas have recently experienced tribal violence and the children were moved for their safety. Although these children were expected later this year, we are blessed to be able to provide  love and security from our Joy Village team. Several of the children needed medical care from Nazareth Hospital and will join the others in a few days. Below are photos taken of ...

The Providence of God

April 29, 2015
Rudy Miller
I have found the attributes of God difficult to define and if one is not careful….can lead to lofty words and explanations. Yet, our God is living and active in our world. Let me share with you a story of His Providence in our Kenyan adventure. In 2013 a mission team from the Nairobi Pentecostal Church traveled to Loyangelani Kenya. Although their focus was water purification they took the opportunity to visit children in several villages. At one village three young girls caught their attention. Each girl was severely malnourished and in ...

Carbon Leaf Partners with Tree of Lives

January 24, 2015
Becky Lyle Pinkard
Huge shout out to Carbon Leaf for the very generous donation to Tree of Lives. We are extremely grateful for their gift! So awesome to serve our less fortunate brothers and sisters in Kenya with this incredible band as backup!

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