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Rafiki Foundation  |  Training Africans to Transform Africa for Christ
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2019 Prayer Guide

June 2019

Letter from the Executive Director

“so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11).

Dear Friends,

God’s Word is going out!

Rafiki exists to help people know God. And this is done primarily through the reading, studying, and applying of God's Word.

As a reminder, we announced in our last letter that the Rafiki Bible Study is now available for use in the USA by small groups.

These studies (we have one on every book of the Bible) are for those who want an in-depth Bible book-study, are serious about wanting to know God, what the Bible says, and are willing to spend 90 minutes together once a week.

We call this the RBS for GROUPS.

For more information sign up here: https://www.rafikibiblestudy.org/

God’s Word is accomplishing its purposes!

In addition, this month marks a significant milestone in the life of Rafiki.

We have six Rafiki children graduating from university this year—several of them graduate this month.

These young ladies have been in our care for 15-16 years! Your prayers and giving have totally changed their lives materially and eternally.

Their brief profiles and photos are below.

More Work to be done!

We still have 787 children that we are raising for the next ten years.

We need orphan sponsors—about 30% of the children of Rafiki are undersponsored—would you pray for more sponsors?

We are grateful for sponsors as well as one-time donations to the orphan fund or scholarship fund.

And consider becoming one if you haven’t already? You could be a part of this type of fruit.
Sign up here: https://www.rafikifoundation.org/child-pages/child-summary 


Here are the totals of all orphans at our Villages

Ethiopia 52
Ghana 101
Kenya 98
Liberia 67
Malawi 98
Nigeria 100
Rwanda 42
Tanzania 60
Uganda 94
Zambia 75
Total 787

Help us to:

Finish raising the 787 children in our care to be future Dativas;

Educate the 2400 children (and eventually 4000 students) in our schools to love God, love their neighbor, love learning and lead in the cause of Christ in the world;

Train the 200 teachers in our teacher’s colleges to cultivate godly contributors;

Equip 1000 church schools (500,000 children or more) to reach the next generation with God’s Word and a God-centered education.

Please join us in praying for more missionaries—we need at least 8 this year to go out—we are asking God for a 2 couples to go and serve in Malawi and Ethiopia.

May the Lord bring about awakening in the church that more would go, give, pray, or send others to the mission field. 

Thank you for your prayers and support – we thank God always for your partnership in the gospel!

Your “Rafiki”,

Karen Elliott, Executive Director

Ethiopia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Ethiopia’s government has announced country-wide electricity rationing due to low rainfall and water levels at the hydroelectric dams, so we are experiencing frequent and prolonged outages. There is also a country-wide shortage of cooking gas. Please pray for us to have a steady supply of diesel for the generator and cooking gas for the kitchen that prepares more than 450 meals a day!

Praises:

There is a new and simpler process for renewing our operating license from the Ministry of Charities and Societies.

A steady water supply and a generator in good condition are a huge blessing!

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

funds for a new vehicle as our current ones keep needing major repairs.

the plaintiffs in the court case who have appealed to the next level of the court; pray for justice to be done in this matter.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Amy has been able to spend time daily with the Rafiki Mothers doing Bible study—this has led to good discussions, sharing, and stronger relationships among the Rafiki Mothers and with Amy.

Many of our older children, especially the girls, continue to show generous hearts and humble spirits.

Praises:

Biruk (age ten and a half) recently had a seizure; after an MRI and EEG, he’s been diagnosed with having static cerebral palsy. This is not a progressive condition or one that will worsen, but one that he may have been born with. We are thankful that he’s at Rafiki and receiving the care and help that he needs in school and at home.

We see improved relationships among the Rafiki Mothers.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom for the Rafiki Mothers as they learn how to effectively parent teenagers.

a full-time missionary to head ChildCare.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

The end of our school year is fast approaching and as it does we have to start thinking about the next school year. To be fully staffed for the 2019-2020 school year, we would like to hire another preprimary teacher, a language arts teacher for the upper grades, and an art or music teacher. One major hurdle in hiring teachers is finding candidates who are fluent in English.

Praises:

Struggling students have been paired with older students to receive daily tutoring.

Our preprimary school was ranked number one in the area by the Education office.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

qualified teacher candidates to apply before the end of the school year.

wisdom in decisions regarding students who may be failing for the year.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

this program to get started.

Rafiki Widows Program

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

this program to get started.

Ghana

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Things are getting very green and growing fast as it is raining more frequently. Our ability to keep the grass in check is still limited by the equipment we have that is working. 

Madam Janet Kucko traveled to the U.S. on May 20 and will be seeing family and friends until she returns to the Village on June 18. The Nelsons will be traveling to the U.S. in the middle of June for a few weeks. Andrea will attend a ChildCare Administrators meeting in Atlanta before traveling to Washington. Jason Hubbard is quickly settling in to his roles at the Village. A friend of Jason’s, Shaun Lovings, is coming to help with GAMES during the break after second term ends on June 21.

Praises:

The water system is working well after a few electrical problems left us with no or little water for a few days.

We are thankful for a Mennonite church nearby that does a great job helping with vehicle repairs and engine repairs on our SCAG mowers. The church runs a repair shop and auto training program for their church members who are interested.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom and perseverance for all the missionary staff.

Jason Hubbard and Melissa Wiedemann as they seek to find a church to call home while they serve here.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

The interviews with Social Welfare went smoothly, and our residents were able to ask their questions and express their opinions about life at the Rafiki Village.

We see more changes and maturity in our children and teens as accountability is growing through better teamwork amongst Rafiki Parents, Rafiki Teachers, and Rafiki Missionaries.

Praises:

In recent interviews of each child by Ghana Social Welfare, all the children report that they are happy with their life at the Rafiki Village.

We have four young women who are completing their tertiary studies.

We are in the process of hiring an auntie/substitute Rafiki Mother.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

an increased desire of Rafiki young people to do everything with excellence and with a servant's attitude.

wisdom as we look for the right training or schooling for a few Rafiki residents who will benefit from alternate schooling or vocational opportunities.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Our upper school math teacher resigned due to health concerns. An experienced senior high language arts teacher started mid-May. We have interviewed several candidates that were referred by our church partners as we are in need of teachers across all of our schools.

Praises:

We are thankful for the addition of a new teacher for the secondary school.

We are thankful for four new students joining the school.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the school staff to seek to meet our term two goals: Teachers On Time, No Students Left Alone, Excellence In Everything.

spiritual growth among students and staff.

qualified Christian teachers to join our staff.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

Ghana is introducing a new curriculum for the Education programs in the universities. We have been notified that some modifications will need to be made to our accreditation paperwork.

Praises:

Paperwork for the accreditation process is in work.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

us to be notified very soon of the new requirements for Education programs so necessary modifications can be made to our proposal.

our Lord to provide students for RICE once it is accredited.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The program is on hold as the widows have fulfilled their orders and we await more full-time missionary help.

Praises:

We thank God for the help this program has been for women over the years.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

current Ghana products to sell through the Rafiki stores (brick and mortar as well as online).

more missionaries so we can continue and strengthen our Rafiki Widows Program in Ghana.

Kenya

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Plentiful rains have come and our plants and gardens are flourishing.

Just as important is the resultant fruit from consistent training and our daily Bible study for staff, students, and missionaries.

Praises:

Short-term missionary Linda Lim blessed our preschool program with many practical suggestions. Other short-term missionaries are coming the next two months to help with school and RICE.

We are grateful for a committed and cohesive team of sixty-two national staff.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the invitation for the November conference to be well received and the registration process to be uncomplicated.

meetings with government officials to facilitate progress towards government approval of our school curriculum and RICE teacher certification.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Some of our “tweens” seem to be going through attitude growing pains. While this is normal it is not acceptable.

Praises:

We are thankful for the Rafiki Mothers and teachers who are attentive to the children as they grow and change.

We had a good first term for our eighteen graduates.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

all of our children to know the saving grace of Jesus and for them to personally build their faith in the power of the Holy Spirit.

the short and long term success of one graduate’s major agricultural project here at the Village.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

We’ve had our first Day Student Scholarship Committee meetings, and have identified a couple of needy families who may qualify to receive tuition relief.

Grades eight and twelve students are in serious preparation for end of year national exams; no after school activities and Saturday morning study sessions. 

Praises:

We opened a second stream of grade one with the help of two teachers through the RICE Program.

Many teachers have volunteered to lead the after-school sports, music, scouts, and the art, book, drama and math clubs which started this week.

Prayer Request—Please pray for:

wisdom and discernment on how to investigate and proceed with providing tuition relief to a few local, needy families.

all students, especially the older ones, to appreciate and take advantage of this unique educational opportunity and to “buckle down” and put in their best effort.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

The new Education Secretary of the Presbyterian Church visited. She is very understanding and hopes to mobilize local congregations to host students from out of town for our RICE Program.

Praises: 

Students are responding positively to high expectations and standards.

We are thankful for a positive first meeting with the new PUEA Head of Education Department regarding the development of our Diploma course.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a full number of students for our June 17 intake.

local church families to open their homes for students who come from out of town.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Widows groups are still eager to make products and it is beneficial to their families.

Praises:

We have a group making a sample bag to be given to all participants at the Christian Classical Education conference here in November.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

guidance for new product possibilities, fresh ideas, and unique products for each group.

the bags for the conference to be completed in a timely manner and with good quality.

Liberia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The rains have begun. Many nights we are awakened by storms and heavy rains most of which clear by morning. If they do not, children come into the Village dripping wet. In preparation for this season, Jeremy and his team have built a shelter on the back side of the clinic building where the day students can wait for the opening of school. As soon as the floor is poured they will put it to good use. 

We are working on getting a van to transport children to and from church.

The RICE building is completed and now the testing period of the rains is showing where it needs to be fine-tuned.

Praises:

We praise God for the national staff who are working so hard to help Rafiki fulfill Gods purpose in Liberia.

We are thankful for God’s protection and sustaining power as we do this work.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

Hassan as he works toward the purchase of a van and for it to go smoothly. 

the Holy Spirit to work in the hearts of those who we encounter and for the children and workers at Rafiki to know God’s love.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

We hosted a wonderful Mother’s Day Program for all the Rafiki staff and wives of our church partners. It was a wonderful experience to honor these women and to share in good food and fun games. 

We will hopefully be purchasing a van this month to help transport the children to church as well as other field trip activities. This van will be a great tool for the children to embrace their country and experience their surroundings. 

Praises:

Many of the children are growing and thriving this year. They are coming into their own and standing up for the truth of the Gospel. 

The children are wanting to help others in the community. For example, one of our children volunteered in a local school while on his home stay with his relatives. 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

discernment, wisdom, and strength for the Rafiki Mothers in the cottages as they are training the children in the ways of the Lord. 

love to grow in the hearts of the children and for them to stay true to the way God created them and have a desire to know His Word.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Our preprimary has grown as we continue to add new students to fill these classes. Many adorable little ones stand at assembly each morning. Most of our primary classes are full and all are learning. Our waiting list continues to grow as parents hope their child will have the opportunity to come to Rafiki.

Sixth grade graduates and ninth grade students will be taking their national exams next week. Much effort has gone into this and expectations are high. It is our first attempt at these exams. 

Praises:

We thank God for protecting our children as they come and go from school each day.

We praise the Lord for the character that we see growing in many of our junior secondary students.

We are thankful for the support of parents in the lives of so many of our junior secondary students.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the health of teachers and students as the rainy season begins and illness and malaria increase.

peace and unity among our preprimary and primary teaching staff.

our sixth-grade graduates and ninth-grade students to do well on their national exams and for the results to be a good reflection of what they have learned. 

calm and confidence as they prepare and for the teachers to instruct accurately and thoroughly.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

Our accreditation is complete now we will be working with United Methodist University to get our credit system to be compatible with theirs. 

Praises:

Mustapha, Sampson, and Alphonso are doing a wonderful job at the Rafiki School getting additional teaching experience to prepare them for going out and working with our church partner or wherever God would place them.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

us to be successful in scheduling a meeting with the United Methodist University (UMU) to work out the details on transferring credits for graduating students and for those going on to get their bachelor’s degree with the university. UMU has assured us that they will do everything they have promised to do, but so far have not been able to schedule a time to meet with us.

the United Methodist Church and our other church partners to hire our teachers as they graduate from the program.

several of our students who have struggled to remain in the program due to sickness and meeting their daily needs. Pray for health and God’s provision so that students can remain in the program.

Rafiki Widows Program

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

this program to get started.

Malawi

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The Village is thriving by God’s grace and mercy even though He has not yet sent career missionary reinforcement. These trying times are great opportunities for stretching our faith muscle and multi-tasking. We are blessed to enjoy the service of short-term missionaries ChiaLee Wong, Kim Yeo, Peter and Yew-Tee Kwok—all trained just over a year ago in Singapore. It is not lost on me that God was already raising Gideon’s army for Malawi because he knew what Malawi needed in 2019—more workers. I am praying that the rest of the Singapore trained short-term missionaries (including those from Hong Kong and China) will be booking flights for Malawi! The One who calls you is faithful and He will do it. I understand from Matthew 28:18-20 that every disciple is called to “go”. So, come, Malawi needs reinforcement—I am the lone career missionary at this time.

We have had lots of thick fogs every morning and heavy rains. Then again, the skies clear up by mid-morning and the rest of the day is fabulous! Come, and enjoy the beauty, goodness, and truth of our almighty God in Malawi! The staff and children and youths love you all!

Praises:

Kim Yeo is interim RICE Dean and YewTee is lending loads of support. RICE is thriving with nineteen students.

Two orthopedic surgeons from Kenya and Uganda—can you identify the links from my two previous Rafiki stations?—graciously waived their professional fees to operate on oldest resident Gabriel Ngulube at Beit Cure International Hospital, Blantyre. He is recovering well from the ankle surgery to remove three screws lodged from a previous procedure. This is the Lord’s doing and it is marvelous in our eyes.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

short-term missionaries identified and lined up for Malawi—for God to keep them strong and healthy, funding in place, and preparations to come to serve. They are ChiaLee Wong (yes, second time in the year), Donna and Dennis Read (yes, age is no barrier when the heart is in the right place), Bill Wood (yes, RICE ambassador for Rafiki), Don Jester and Butch Cosgrove (yes, men who can fix all broken things!). Pray for many more to join this Gideon’s army.

continued grace and wisdom from God for the Village Administrator to multitask for all programs and the training of the nationals.

protection from thieves and robbers who intrude the Village. Pray for the guards to be more vigilant and responsible in their assignments and understand that they must be firm and authoritative in their calling.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

The few cases of malaria, skin rashes, and stomach upsets post-homestay were arrested swiftly.

Staff and residents are relating nicely and there is a new normal of cooperation and support.

Youths are more involved in church happenings and our choir, The Conquerors, sing beautifully during Sunday worship at St. Andrew’s Church of Central Africa Presbyterian. A group of older girls (cottage Isaiah) represent Rafiki at the Anglican St. Mark’s Sunday service, singing hymns to the Lord.

Praises:

Residents are beginning to understand the need to maintain a balance between sports, music, and academics. Study halls are serious business nowadays!

All Rafiki Mothers and residents have stepped up to share the responsibility of Village chores including food preparation, cleaning, gardening, and digging the landfill.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

residents to learn and practice daily quiet time and journaling their faith experiences in order to know Jesus more and more.

a full-time pianist for training the residents who are musically inclined.

the blessed training of a new couple called to be Residence Hall parents for the twenty youths living in the boys residence hall.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Every day our thirty-three teachers are on a biblical worldview integrated mission in their classrooms to 297 students from prekindergarten to grade level twelve because God is at the center of each lesson taught. Students are trained to think about who God is, how the environment they live in point to God, and how each student ought to respond. Our grade levels one, two, and four students were thrilled to participate in three agriculture field trips to Kusintha Farm, Lusangazi to explore life in soil, the life of a bee, and to study trees and what they do. Their hearts and minds have been enlarged by the opportunity. 

Praises:

God brought an agricultural teacher, Mr. Phaniso Mumba so we have resumed all agriculture classes.

Grade level eight students sat for their national Primary School Certificate Leaving Exam over three days and were glad for it.

After school study hall thrice a week is helping the students stay focused on mastering their work and learning wholesomely.

Kelly Fore from Uganda came to strengthen school administration and support the teachers in their in-service.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to appoint a Christian classical career missionary to serve as headmaster of the school.

clarity and God’s best for the school as we consider how to meet the Malawian Education Ministry’s requirement to abide by their academic calendar without compromising the excellence and integrity of the Rafiki Education System.

God to bring a Malawian able to teach music and art to the upper school grade levels.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

All nineteen students are applying themselves to on-line training, face-to-face interaction and self-study. They understand that the daily Rafiki Bible Study is integral to all of their time with RICE. RICE has bonded these students who are learning to work together.

Praises:

David Pederson from Kenya came to support the two-day University of Livingstonia-RICE curriculum development consultations; this being the last leg of the marathon before submission to the National Council for Higher Education.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

two level 2D students to grow in their practicums and be well-prepared for teaching in Kileni Schools during the fall. Kileni Schools is a partner church school from the Church of Central Africa Presbyterian.

a full-time RICE Dean as well as deans for art and music to be assigned as soon as possible.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Mrs. Ruth Nyondo and her ladies have sewn some Kitenge (African fabric) quilt samples, handstitched a Kitenge remnant floor rug, and other products which are on their way to the Home Office for consideration. The ladies are so grateful to be asked to provide samples and the potential for an income source.

Praises:

The ladies are patient and trusting God for however He will direct the progress of their product samples.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the ladies to take great advantage of the widows Rafiki Bible Study as they meet every fortnight for fellowship and product making.

the Home Office Widows Program manager to review favorably the product samples to offer creative suggestions to get the products to a high standard that attracts orders.

Nigeria

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Peace continues around us here at the Village. 

Everything is turning green and lush with the rains. 

Exams continue for our graduates and our junior secondary three students who are in process of taking their exit exams to go on to senior high in Nigerian schools.

Praises:

Great teaching resources and skills are being given to our teachers by our newest ROS Shakiyla. 

The new design for the preprimary classrooms is working well.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the tools and techniques given to the teachers to be put into practice. 

continued good work of our maintenance men not only in repairs but in remodeling and creative fixes to issues and problems.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Praises:

Studies continue in the school as well as those graduating for their exams.

Children rotate going to town for worship and report it is good.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

students to not be thrown by the changes in the use of cottages that were once home.

Rafiki Mothers to apply themselves to the new jobs assigned as cottages are emptied.

Rafiki Education Program

Praises:

We are already to midterms for the second term.

JAMB results are back and all are eligible for higher education if all other requirements are met. Students continue to take the senior high exit exams.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

diligence for our eighteen students taking exams to persevere to the end.

the teachers to truly want to educate, not lecture, the children and for the children to love to learn. 

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

The sixty-five students in RICE are getting ready for midterms. Some are struggling but trying hard. 

The process of affiliation with the University of Mkar is official but now the paperwork and blending of schedules needs to occur.

Praises:

We had a good meeting with the University of Mkar and the great support of the Vice Chancellor.

We are thankful for the guidance from the Home Office visit to continue to strive for excellence.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

students to start to hear that RICE is not doing the old teaching method but something that involves the teacher with the students.

students to truly see the need to master curriculum not just memorize to pass a test.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The Home Office order for new products is nearing completion and the women are proud of their work.

Praises:

We are thankful for the delight of the women to show us their work.

Rafiki can help in the support of these women in need.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the order to be completed with excellence and delivered. 

additional orders to come in to keep the women busy.

Rwanda

Rafiki Village

Updates:

We are very blessed that the newest member of our team, Sarah Freeman, has received her Visa from the Rwandan government and should soon have her national ID card. This is truly God’s providence.

We are planning on celebrating Rafiki Village Rwanda’s ten years of caring for the children of Rwanda and have asked the First Lady of Rwanda, Mrs. Jeannette Kagame to be our honored guest.

Praises:

The National Commission for Children has visited and thanked us for our close cooperation during the placement of the children.

We are thankful for our good relations with the government of Rwanda.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a swift response from the First Lady’s office as to whether she will be able to attend our ten-year anniversary celebration.

the government to quickly finalize the deed for our property.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

With the last of our children now reassigned into families, we have begun a long-term “maintenance” process in cooperation with the National Commission for Children to keep watch over the children in their new families. This is mainly accomplished at school with the watchfulness of their teachers looking for any signs of change in their behavior.

Praises:

The boys’ gardens produced many zucchini thereby earning them money to be used for a family activity.

Some of our future engineers made a working remote control car.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the Ephesians boys and Rafiki Mother to work through some struggles and live in unity as a family.

honesty in the youth in regard to lying and stealing.

one of our girls who is struggling with her belief in God.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Our new term has started off well with all the students excited and ready to learn.

Praises:

We’ve been incredibly blessed by students that can spell incredibly difficult words! We recently had our English and Kinyarwanda spelling bees and were amazed by their growth in excellence. We thank God for many serious students and teachers!

Nineteen students have started piano lessons and are eagerly practicing. The hills are alive with the sound of music.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the students taking mid-terms. Many students have improved, but there are a few that are struggling with being responsible for their homework and reviewing for tests. By speaking with the parents/guardians, we have discovered many of the ones that are struggling have no one at home for support. Both parents work in Kigali until late at night. Pray for the students to develop independent study skills.

the next steps for our spelling bee winners. Eight of our students will be travelling to Kigali for the Eastern Province spelling bee. If we do well there, they will compete in the National Bee June 21. Please pray for God-confidence and for the students to shine for His glory.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

this program to get started.

Rafiki Widows Program

Praises:

The Anglican widow’s group is embroidering beautiful table linens.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the widows to continue to embroider the table linens with excellence and complete the order so the ChildCare Administrator can take the items to the States in June.

Tanzania

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The long rains have finally come, and we are relieved to see the rapid growth of crops in the fields surrounding our Village. Though the mud presents its share of challenges as our staff and students come and go each day, the return of green grass and cooler temperatures has been a welcome change. 

While our labs received high praise during their inspection last month, another obstacle has appeared on our path to secondary school registration. The Village property must be re-zoned before we can move forward. This could cause a significant delay, but our church partners are working to bring it about.

Praises: 

We thank God for the extremely positive response of the quality assurance inspectors to our new laboratories.

We thank God for the long-awaited rain and the growth of staple foods like corn and beans.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for: 

clear direction and quick resolution of our rezoning.

encouragement for all our staff and students who have been eager to resume classes for our two highest grade levels and now have to wait longer.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

The children remain healthy and happy. 

Many of the bicycles were repaired by a recent short-term missionary and the children are so happy to have “wheels” while the repairs last. Three of the boys worked with the short-term missionary on bike repairs and we hope they will be able to continue the repairs.

The children are so thankful for access to the RICE gym for sports now that the rains make outdoor activities nearly impossible.

For now the children’s gardens are planted in beans as that is the crop that does well in this season.

Praises: 

Praise God that the children are healthy even during the rainy season.

Praise God for good repairs on the bicycles.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for: 

the secondary school to be registered by July so our fifteen students going to the national school will be back at Rafiki.

the older children to be safe as they travel to and from the government school in rainy weather.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Teachers and students came back from the Easter school break with energy and continued commitment to great teaching and learning. 

Everyone is working hard and showing true dedication to education even through the challenges that come with the blessing of a very rainy season. 

The classrooms are lively with songs about the body systems, discussions about renewable and non-renewable energy sources, design and building of vehicles, and many other engaging activities. Teachers are making learning fun!

Praises:

God has given the teachers a desire to continuously improve their teaching practices and try new things for the benefit of their students.

God has gifted our students with a wide variety of abilities, whether it be academically, athletically, artistically, musically, socially, or others.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to cause the final forms for secondary school registration to be processed and approved quickly.

God to help us train up each of our 189 students to be godly leaders who are full of virtue and desire to follow after Him all of their lives.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

As the second term of 2019 draws to a close, RICE students are working hard to complete research papers, final projects, and practice teaching, all while preparing for final exams.

Praises: 

Even with heavy rains making the journey to school difficult, the students are maintaining good attendance and positive attitudes.

Students are growing in their ability to memorize Bible verses from the weekly studies.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

students to remain diligent as they have a great deal of course material to remember.

renewed progress on the path toward registration for RICE so that our graduates can be officially recognized as qualified teachers.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The order for scrub tops and bowties has been completed.

Praises: 

The women completed the new products quickly and with attention to detail.

The payment for the new products came to the women at a time when several were in great need.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to grow all participants in the program in trust and gratitude toward Him.

a lot of interest from medical offices in the African fabric scrub tops and caps.

Uganda

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Patti Lafage and Lynn and David Kumpe held down the Village while Kelly Fore was away for several weeks during term two, visiting family in the States and assisting at Rafiki Village Malawi.

Praises:

We thank God for a strong, capable, and unified missionary team.

In addition to his RICE Dean responsibilities, David Kumpe has started to oversee plant maintenance, providing strong leadership for that department.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

David Kumpe as he manages his position as RICE Dean and plant manager. 

all residents, day students, and employees to live and work for God and not for man.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Five of our residents are preparing for ABRSM (Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music- based in the UK) exams, which will take place in early June. We are thankful for their God-given talents, hard work, and the work of their music instructors as they encourage their students to pursue excellence. 

We had a wonderful celebration to honor the Rafiki Mothers on Sunday, May 12. Our prefects planned a lovely party, including a special meal made by our wonderful kitchen staff, beautiful decorations in the dining hall, flowers, and a crown for each Rafiki Mother.

Praises:

We are thankful for the opportunity for five resident students to take the ABRSM.

We are thankful for an honoring and enjoyable Mother’s Day celebration. 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the Rafiki Mothers to sincerely model godly character traits and for the resident students to observe and be encouraged to follow their example.

protection for and a good yield from our Village garden. The rains have been more regular, however, the monkeys are a threat to the banana plantation. 

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Two new teachers were added to the faculty at the start of term two—a primary four teacher and an upper school science teacher. They are of high caliber and have integrated into the faculty well. 

Praises:

We are thankful for our two new teachers.

The primary one to three students enjoyed participating in a Bible competition at the start of term two.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

an upper school language arts teacher to be hired by the end of term two.

the teachers and students to transition from print to cursive. 

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

The Westminster Christian Institute Uganda has received additional questions and comments from the Ugandan National Council of Higher Education (NCHE) regarding Westminster’s application to bring the RICE campus under its accreditation. Responses are being generated and actions to be in compliance taken.

Praises:

The students have been showing a greater ability to deal with abstract concepts and have started asking more questions. 

The students have made it through the midpoint of term two with very few absences due to illness.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

successful completion of responses to the further inquiries from the NCHE, resulting in placement of the application on the NCHE’s agenda for their next meeting.

greater interest from potential new students who desire to start RICE in July 2019 and more support and referrals from our partner churches.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The Uganda Rafiki Widows Program craftswomen work quickly and have completed ninety percent of all the current orders. 

Rafiki Village Uganda has been blessed with numerous short-term missionaries and missionaries traveling to the U.S., who have been able to transport most of the products to the Home Office. Lookout for fully stocked shelves at the Exchange or the Rafiki website for your favorite made-in-Uganda items!

Praises:

Our Uganda weavers group, in particular, delivers products faithfully and regularly every month. 

The weaver’s group is learning to plan and save for their children's school fees and pay them on time. Many needy families scramble for pennies when school fees are due so children miss days, weeks, or even a whole term due to unpaid fees. Praise God, our Ugandan weavers are managing that recurring cost better as a result of their work with Rafiki.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to continue to bless the work of our Home Office sales and marketing teams so that the Rafiki Widows Program products can reach even more potential buyers—creating a “virtuous circle” for a more generous income for all the Rafiki Widows Program groups.

Zambia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The Rafiki School and Institute of Classical Education are in full swing.

Water and electricity have been in good supply.

The internet service has been interrupted and is being renovated.

Another construction project is underway of building a “strong room” to protect national exam papers when Rafiki School becomes an exam center in the coming year.

Praises:

The work on the VSAT (internet) system has brought us back online.

We have been in a season of peace and prosperity—enjoying the blessings God is pouring out.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the success of a less expensive internet provider.

quick resolutions of conflicts that arise and continued peace and unity among the staff.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Children are doing well preparing meals, doing dishes, and doing laundry on the weekends with the guidance and help of their Rafiki Mothers.

Praises:

We praise God for the children being settled in school and many determined to learn.

We are thankful for the healing of addictive behavior for one of our girls as a result of a good visit with family over school break.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

our girl to continue to have victory over her addictive behavior.

our Rafiki Mothers and teachers not to tolerate disrespectful behavior and to have God’s wisdom in dealing with it.

Rafiki Education Program

Praises:

We thank God for the Rafiki Bible Study lessons in Psalms which are very encouraging and informative.

We thank God for His provision of committed and caring teachers, and for the depth and riches of the Rafiki School curriculum.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

all students to be called by the Holy Spirit to saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, and for each student and teacher to be a beacon of God's truth and goodness in their communities.

students to grow in loving what they learn and in the virtue of respect and self-control.

teachers to be guided by God to present engaging lessons and to create joyful learning environments in every class.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

We are halfway through our second term. We have a brand new 1A class that has taken a LOT of work but we are finally seeing them come along and do well on nearly all tests, papers, and exams.

The RICE Deans have had to seriously challenge five students with academic pressures. They seem to be responding well to the “challenge”, but we continue to monitor carefully. All other forty-three students seem to be doing well. We have a total of forty-eight students this term in levels 1A, 2C, 3A, 3C, and 3D. We have been led to start another 1A class in July if God brings them in.

Praises:

God has blessed us with getting to the half way mark this term well. We have had several serious challenges so far—academic warnings, plagiarism issues, serious health issues—one boy has gone blind in one eye suddenly! But we have seen God work in so many ways—including this week as now we have good, certified diplomas for our past graduates!!!

Karen and Richard Farrand felt they worked hard the first term, but feel they are really working hard this term and with two assistants no less!!! But God is good and He is keeping them in good spirits and good shape as they continue to tackle the term's work load.

The Farrands’ daughter-in-law underwent stage two nasal cancer surgery and she is about to face two months of twice daily radiation to hopefully prevent her losing her eyesight. It has been a very difficult situation yet they have seen God at work in their son and daughter-in-law's lives.

The Farrands’ daughter continues in her daily struggle in a very difficult situation. Again, they keep praying, and God keeps providing.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the Farrands to again be strong deans of RICE and to encourage the students to learn as much as they can to become future teachers in Zambia.

the Farrands’ son and his wife and her complete recovery before she starts radiation treatments and for her eyesight to be protected.

Karen as she teaches music to 1A students and for Richard as he teaches art to 1A students. Pray they can continue to encourage 1A and all students to stay on the steady strong track for the next five weeks.

the Farrands’ daughter and her situation.

the five marginal students to continue to succeed.

the Village to have regular, steady internet. It has been a very difficult month with virtually no outside communication.

the Farrands to do well the next five weeks before a quick return to U.S. for medical supplies and checks. Thank you!

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The women's particular giftedness and talents are becoming more evident. 

Judy Stokes plans to use her Fridays for one to one individual training for the duration of the training program. 

The women are learning a lot about machine trouble shooting and repair which is very good but soon would love to work on regularly well performing machines.

Praises:

The women are not willing to settle for passable work but are striving to produce their best for God's glory, fame, and honor! 

We express gratitude to God all during the day as we see Him give us victory in new challenges! 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

Judy to see how to best customize their training so that they might specialize in that area well and be effective trainers to many more.

our insight and wisdom to grow as to how best to get and keep our machines in top working condition so that we are not long delayed or frustrated by mediocre local sewing machines.