Wilsons_2013 Posted by Rory Wilson on Wed, 13 May 2015 | 2 comments | Bookmark: digg this Post this to del.icio.us Post this to Facebook

With hindsight, the Sunday evening of a Bank Holiday weekend may not have been the best timing for the Kiwoko night at St Columbanus’. Before the event, we wondered if the turnout might be quite low.

Rory, Gideon and I arrived, just as the Mission Committee had sat down for a well earned quick cup of tea. They had arranged chairs, tables and folded coloured napkins (reflecting the colours of the Ugandan flag – such attention to detail!). If no one else had turned up, their hard work preparing the hall would have meant a lot to encourage us.

I stood at the front of the hall ready to give my brief account of the last year at Kiwoko from my perspective. As I looked at the rows of seats all filled with friends, family and active supporters, I was all at once overwhelmed by my own unworthiness, and encouraged by the love and interest expressed in the expectant faces waiting to hear what I had to say.

The atmosphere was relaxed and homely. We talked about Kiwoko; Jade, Laura and Cameron led the very meaningful praise and worship; and we interviewed a couple of people from the META team heading to Kiwoko in August. Simon gave an encouraging message and CMSI representatives prayed for us along with family and friends. It was a very uplifting evening. Old and young, various denominations and walks of life were represented, with everyone united in their interest and support for Kiwoko, and of course us.

As we stood there and people encouraged us, inside I felt a bit guilty. Often people say they admire our faith to take risks and our ability to leave the ‘life’ we had or could have had in Ireland behind. That word ‘life’ is synonymous with comfort/higher wages/convenience/health care etc. Perhaps for us that might have been true the first time that we headed for Africa, but actually now we are heading to a place where we do feel comfortable, we don’t need high wages and we have access to most things that we need. Above all we love the life that we are so privileged to live in Uganda – a life that is only made possible by the support of many – for the hospital at large and for us personally. Many of those supporters were there.

Yes there are challenges to overcome, yes there are frustrations, yes we miss not being down the road from family BUT as I looked around the hall on Sunday night, I thought about some of the circumstances that some of these people are in: challenges in the work place; despite being in the same country to family not actually seeing them very often; the responsibilities of raising a young family; loneliness; health concerns…; I felt a bit guilty that no one was cheering them on and praising them for being courageous and hanging onto their faith despite their circumstances.

Inasmuch as we are being cheered on in our Kiwoko journey, we also commend you our dear friends and family for your courageous faith in a (spiritually) cooler climate here in Ireland. Well done or ‘Mujebale’ as they say in Uganda.

And thanks everybody. SO many people have really looked out for us to make the last 6 weeks manageable (to say nothing of the last year!) Those who lent a car or house; gave Gideon Piano Lessons (Paula Lown is a really fantastic kids’ music teacher if anyone is looking for one;) supported us with gifts of money, logs, toys, clothes, food, bikes; had us round for meals; came from afar to visit us; looked after Gideon; prayed with us; came and listened to us; and for our families and close friends who have once again released us with their blessing….THANK YOU.

1 Timothy 6:11-12 ‘But you man (or woman) of God, flee from all this, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.’

See you next year – God willing!


Paul Sayers said Sat, 06 Jun 2015 02:47PM
Just getting caught up with your blogs. Interesting reading as usual.
Debbie said Wed, 17 Jun 2015 01:22PM
Loved hearing of your time back here and I am so excited to be visiting Kiwoko in August with Ballyholme parish and feel privileged to be on this journey.

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