Saturday, December 22, 2007

Worship Without Borders In Uganda

Worship Without Borders (Brent's Uncle Tim and Aunt Maryl), along with Molly Nixon came to minister in Uganda for 2 weeks recently. Tim ministered to two island churches and then taught on worship in our Island Ministers School the first week. Molly and Maryl taught the Osanidde kids about hygiene, helped the nurse with some medical issues and passed out gifts for the kids, mommas and auntie's and uncles at Osanidde. The team even purchased two milk cows for the orphanage! It was a great blessing to have them here!
Tim receiving pineapples and a live chicken as a "thank you" for teaching at Pastor Kate's church on Zinga Island.

Tim ministering to the Zinga Island Church on Sunday.

Teaching on worship to the the Island Minister School students.

Couldn't miss out on the famed trip to Pastor Joash's pineapple plantation for a tasty treat!

And this is what we have started on Josiah's little baby corner in our room. We're working on getting a crib this week, but in the meantime he has a little moses basket that Tim and Maryl bought for us. So far we're going with the colorful African animal theme complete with a little Rhino/Elephant mobile. Keep praying for us as he could come any day now!!

Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas this year!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Thanksgiving In Uganda

Thomas the turkey before he became part of our thanksgiving feast. This is authentic pilgrim style! The only thing we were missing were the Indians. (We have the slaughter video, but I thought I would spare you the disgust)

Here we are feasting with the Higgins, the Iversons, Sarah Nashif (from Portland) and Josh Shelton (from Bend) in Lira. We had a wonderful time. Thanks Carol for your amazing cooking! It was a much needed time of fellowship, rest and cinnamon rolls. mmmmm.....

Brent and I taking a picture in the new vocational building at Otino Waa.

And this little guy I found just today hanging around outside our house in Kampala. I call him Lizzy the lizard. We find new and amazing creatures all the time and we don't even have to go to the zoo or on safari to find them!

Friday, November 23, 2007

The Jesus Bar

Jesus loved sinners, and He still does. In fact, He loved them so much, He came to earth as a baby, and lived among sinners for 33 years. During His three year ministry He spent time with tax collectors, prostitutes, and individuals and groups the Bible simply labels "sinners." Religious leaders, the general populace, and even His own disciples (though sinners themselves) were shocked at Jesus' freedom of movement among these people whose transgression was forefront in the minds of others.

Here in Africa, Christians have drawn pretty clear lines drawn around the issue of alcohol consumption, though the discussion is more blurry among believers in the West. Do you think Jesus would go so far as to own and operate His own bar/restaurant? Why/why not? It seems as though these Kenyans have picked up on the loving, accepting, and forgiving nature of Jesus and named their establishment after Him. Is this sign an oxymoron, profaning the precious name of Jesus, an outreach of His love to sin-benighted, straying children, or no different than the "Jesus Coffee House"?

Friday, November 16, 2007

"I Don't Know What's Happening Here"....

That's what our midwife said to us while we were waiting to see her for our routine appointment yesterday, as she wheeled a visibly distressed woman to the room next to us at the hospital. It was obvious by the screams of agony from the lady that "what was happening" was that she was having a baby. As this woman stood up in the hallway to walk into the labor room she began giving birth and barely make it to the bed when 20 seconds later we heard the cries of a newborn baby. We'd heard these kind of stories before, but never actually witnessed something quite like it....until yesterday.

This experience made us realize that not all women have to suffer through labor like we thought and that really; life is like a box of never know what you're gonna get! (Praying we get a similar "chocolate" as this woman!)

...And that was our ordinary visit to the hosptial turned crazy! If you have other tremendous birthing stories you'd like to share, we'd love to get your comments. Until next time....

Thursday, November 08, 2007

The 7 Month Milestone and A Name For Baby

This week marks 7 months, going on 8.....getting closer to D-Day!

We're not sure how far along Brent is, but he's no match for Virginia's belly!

And here's the cute couple before they find out what parenting is really all about.....the after picture might look a bit more frantic. :)

We'd also like to announce that we've officially decided on a name for our son:

Josiah Levi Earwicker

Saturday, November 03, 2007

The Weirdest Bug You've Ever Seen

We had to dedicate a segment of our blog to, "the bug collector". He's been roaming around outside our house ever since we arrived here in Uganda and we've found him quite disgusting and fascinating all at the same time. At first we thought it was a weird looking spider, but when we got a closer look we noticed it was some kind of beetle that collects dead bugs on it's back. We've really kind of grown fond of our little house mate since he does have good cleaning habits! If anyone thinks they can top "the bug collector" in terms of weirdness, we'd be happy to hear about it. That's all for now, here at the Earwicker hut.

Friday, October 26, 2007

A Sneak Peek

We had another ultrasound this morning and here are the 3D pictures to give you a little preview of what our little son might look like. They said all is normal and he's now weighing in at 3.19 pounds and growing. Apparently he likes to suck on his umbilical cord, and Brent thinks that's kind of gross, but a guy's got to be pretty bored in that little womb all by himself for 9 months (that's why his mouth looks kind of funny). We're pretty proud of our little one and think he's pretty cute already! Yay!

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Island Ministers School

We began our 18 week ministers training school on October 1st on Bussi Island, beginning with around 12 students the first week and ending up with about 45 by the end of last week! Praise the Lord! These pastors and ministers come from four different islands and even one from the mainland to study the Word of God. Please pray for the ministers that they will receive all that God has for them and also for us as we have to commute 2 1/2 hours to the island every week for the monday through wednesday 9am to 4pm sessions. Not only are these leaders being challenged as they study the word, but we feel like we're also in school learning how to face the challenges of teaching in a cross cultural setting. It's going to be a great 18 weeks!

Virginia teaching an encounter session on grace.

Brent sharing with the class on how to keep their freedom from the past.

Here the students are working hard taking notes.
Our classroom is currently the chapel at Osannidde Village.

Last but not is the 6 month milestone picture of the growing child and belly!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Exploring Uganda

We had three girls from Bend, Oregon (Megan, Kristen and Whitney) come and stay with us for two and a half weeks. The above picture shows some of the wonderful things that they brought all the way from America for us (this includes pop tarts, reeces peanut butter cups, some maternity clothes and other fantastic things!)
Our first leg of the trip began on Bussi Island where we helped distribute some sweaters that were donated to the kids, put on a few days of VBS, ate lots of fish and had a wonderful few days spending time with the beautiful children at Osanidde.
Our trip to the island also included a visit to Pastor Joash's famous pineapple plantation where we shave them and eat them on the spot. We had to have the girls experience literally the best pineapples in the world! I think the expression on their faces sum it up.
And of course while Virginia and the girls were hard at work on the island, Brent was out fishing on the Lake. If you look closely the big fish actually died trying to eat a smaller fish (not small enough) and the little one is coming out of it's gills. Nice catch Brent!
Our next destination took us up North to visit Bob and Carol Higgins in Lira. After quite a few hours in the car driving on bumpy, pot holed roads we finally made it for a wonderful tour of their orphanage Otino Waa Village.Brent joined in on a game of Simon Says at an Otino Waa VBS and here he is above right before he lost for putting his hands in the air when simon didn't say!
Our next stop...Murchison Falls National Park for Safari. What a beautiful place! Here we are at the top of the falls for a quick pic!After our time at Murchison Falls we spent a few days in Gulu where we were able to minister to the kids in one of the IDP camps. We sang songs, played games, told bible stores and shared the gospel. Many received Christ as their savior.
Also while in Gulu we stayed with Pastor Espiritu who has a church in town, leads the IDP camp outreaches and also has been given radio airtime on 3 different stations to lead discussions and preach the gospel. While we were there he invited Brent to help lead a discussion about the bible on one of the live radio talk shows. The above picture shows Brent doing a great job sharing with the people the truth about the word of God.
On one of our last days back in Kampala we took the girls to Owino Market which is the largest semi outdoor market in Kampala. It happened to rain quite hard the day we went, so here we are trying to stay dry while we weave our way in and out of this crazy place! As you can see, it was quite an eventful two weeks and in the end we were all glad that we made it back home in one piece!
And finally, the latest on the it is at 5 and half months with 3 and a half more months to go!

Friday, September 07, 2007

Experience The Day With Us....

The following video of our ultrasound shows that we are indeed having a boy. The view is just of his two legs (femur bones to knees) and "in between". It's not a full shot of his body because the view is from underneath him. He was moving around a lot during the procedure, so that's why it looks like moving blobs most of the time. :) Look closely. Enjoy!

This next one shows more of his body a bit better(legs and cute little bottom anyway). He's a squirmer!

Here's one of his strong, little heartbeat.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

It's A Boy!!

We had our ultra sound today and found out that we're having a little baby boy! He was moving around so much it was hard to get a clear shot of him, but we will have some video soon of the live experience. We're excited to have a little Brent around soon!
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Friday, August 17, 2007

Catching Up

Since our last post......

We traveled to Nakifuma, Uganda where we assisted with a crusade and taught a two day seminar.

We celebrated our 3rd anniversary in the cold Kenyan countryside as we joined a medical ministry team with some friends from Boise.

We just returned from a week a half trip to do Island ministry with a 7 member YWAM team from New Zealand. It was a packed week where we did children's crusades, church planting, seminars and even a women's conference!

We're now preparing for a team of three girls that are coming from Westside Church in Bend, Oregon next week to see Uganda and do lots of children's ministry. It's been a busy summer for us so far and we would appreciate your continued prayers for health and safety as we continue to travel and minister.Last of all, here's the latest news on the growing belly! It's growing...really...

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

We Got A Car!

After taking public transportation and motorcycle taxi's for almost 8 months now we have our own vehicle! Yay! It's a '95 Toyota Landcruiser, perfect for the crazy African roads!

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

The Three Month Pooch

Today marks the end of the first trimester (3 months) and we call this the 3 month pooch. It will only get better from here folks!

This pictures is also for people like Kristin Downs who said they had to "see it to believe it". It's true that even I can grow a belly! :)


.....And this just in....

We also had our first Ultra Sound today (7/5). For some reason they only gave us the picture showing the baby's head (a whopping 2.53 cm)! During the live procedure we were able to see the baby's whole body including little hands and feet, the heart beat, the spine and the cute little head! What a little squirmer this little one is. He/she was swimming and doing acrobats all over the place. The doctor said everything looks normal. It was a fun first "introduction". Hopefully the next ultrasound we'll be able to tell if it's a boy or a girl!

Stay tuned for more baby/ tummy updates!

Monday, July 02, 2007

Celebrating the 4th of July in Uganda!

We've had two 4th of July parties already in Uganda and it's not even the 4th yet! We had a great time on Saturday getting together with a bunch of American missionaries at one of their houses, eating hamburgers, hot dogs, potato salad, pork and beans and even a yummy confetti cake to celebrate the 4th of July. We were able to hear from each of them what they've been doing here and their heart for this nation and also share about our time here. We met a younger couple who just moved here a month a ago from Michigan who will be teaching a discipleship curriculum to young adult leaders who will take the curriculum to the high schools. It was refreshing to have some fellowship with some like minded/hearted people that all come from the same place, speak the same language and most importantly are working for the cause of Christ.

Yesterday's party was put on by the American Embassy for all Americans living or staying in Uganda. There were probably over 100-250 people there from all walks of life; Non profit organizations, missionaries, government workers, families, young adults, etc. Brent even got to meet with and shake the ambassadors hand!

Right now we're trying to get our work permit to be legal for at least a year and we'll be starting that process tomorrow, so please pray for us that we have favor with the immigration officials here. Thanks for checking in!