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

April 2019

“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).

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).

“For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, that through endurance and through the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Romans 15:4).

May 2019

Dear friends,

Rafiki exists to help people know God. And this is done primarily through the reading, studying, and applying of God's Word. As the Bible says, God's Word accomplishes God's purposes, renews your mind, instructs, and brings endurance and hope.

We have some exciting news for you our dear friends, supporters, and prayer partners. As you know, Rafiki has developed its own Bible study that covers every book of the Bible totaling 553 week-long lessons. This has been a 13-year process and now we have completed all of the adult level materials. This material was developed for use in the Rafiki Villages in every program and is also intended for use by our African church partner denominations in their schools.

But just recently Rafiki Board of Directors decided that we should make the RBS available to small groups in the USA who want an in-depth Bible book-study and 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.

An RBS GROUP is a group of 5-15 people who want to meet in a home, church, or other place in the USA using the RBS lessons. The lessons are free to groups through a qualified GROUP Leader.

For your information, the lessons consist of printed notes with questions for discussion and a suggested commentary written by someone other than the writer of the notes on the book being studied. GROUP members are also encouraged to use Crossway’s Systematic Theology Study Bible where over 300 doctrines are briefly explained within the text. (These Bibles can be purchased from the Crossway website or ordered from Rafiki at a discounted price.) Any GROUP member who diligently studies these lessons in this way would receive the equivalent of a seminary course in that book of the Bible. There is really nothing quite like the RBS for GROUPS available anywhere else.

If you want to know more about the RBS for GROUPS, please call or write Rafiki, or email RBSGroups@RafikiFoundation.org for details.

May the Lord use this in the lives of all our “Rafikis” to bring about awakening in the church.

Your “Rafiki”

Karen Elliott

Executive Director

Ethiopia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

With relief and gratitude to God we are happy to report that the court case regarding the land where our Village sits was decided in Rafiki’s favor! Pray for no further issues to come from it.

Praises:

All went well at the Village while Amy and Tekle were on furlough.

We are thankful for the excellent national staff as well as short-term missionaries Bill Wood, Esther Honneger, and Paul Fuller who worked hard while the full-time missionaries were in the USA.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom and efficiency in the process to renew Rafiki’s operating license which is issued by the Ethiopian Federal Ministry of Charities and Societies.

discretion in making decisions about purchasing a reliable vehicle (there are many guidelines and restrictions upon this by the government).

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Esther Honegger, who was a long-term missionary here, took over the ChildCare duties for the month that Amy was away; she was tremendously helpful, writing sponsor reports, helping the kitchen manager, and helping out in the school.

The children in grades six and seven organized a Good Friday Service for the residents of Rafiki.

Praises:

We thank God for the good health and general contentment of the children.

The spiritual maturity and growth of some of the older resident children is especially encouraging.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

Rafiki Mother Maria and the oldest boys to have good communication, trust, and relationships.

a full-time missionary to head ChildCare.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Progress reports revealed improvements in many of our students’ academic performance since the end of last semester.

While the headmaster was on furlough, short-term missionary Bill Wood conducted some excellent in-service training for the teachers and was able to informally observe most of them in the classroom and provide constructive feedback.

Praises:

We hope to hire a new preprimary teacher.

All went very smoothly in the school while the headmaster was away due largely to the efforts of head teacher Fiseha and Bill Wood.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom and creativity in how best to help some struggling students in grades one, four, and five.

a restful school break for the teachers and productive time for the headmaster as she plans for the rest of the semester.

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:

The Nelsons traveled to Florida in late March for Enrichment and the annual Village administrator’s meeting. Grace and Ian were able to come this time and volunteered at the Home Office during Enrichment. 

Sue Imig was here to help for a couple of weeks during the school break after a longer stint at the Rwanda Village. 

Jason Hubbard arrived April 9. He will be helping with plant management and athletics at the Village.

Praises:

We are thankful for safe travel for the Nelsons and Jason Hubbard traveling to and/or from the U.S. Also, the safe travel for the missionaries and nationals on the roads to and from the Village.

Praise God we had no major issues come up while the Nelsons were away from the Village.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

Jason Hubbard as he settles in to his new home and his calling to serve here. Specifically, pray for him to grow in his relationship with the Lord and for him to be able to help and encourage others to do the same. Also, pray for him to find a church home soon.

all the missionaries to be growing in their walk with the Lord. Pray for us to be an encouragement to one another and all those that we interact with in the course of our lives here.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

The school break from March 23-April 14 was good for our students. They enjoyed the change of routine. They helped with some projects around the Village, read, rested, played games, and played football in informal leagues. Also, over half went out for vision exams and dental exams. We are thankful to be able to provide this preventative medical care for our children. This is not something to take for granted for a child here in Ghana. 

Praises:

Our oldest boys were able to shop for their monthly personal supplies in a town near the Village. It was a positive experience and they reported that it was a good learning experience.

We are thankful for God's constant care and provision for the children we are raising. Very few had dental or vision issues which needed follow-up appointments.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a spirit of peace in our children's hearts to be individually interviewed by Social Welfare in the coming weeks.

Rafiki children to develop better study habits, a deeper desire for learning, and a vision for their future which will help motivate them in school and all of life.

suitable applicants for Rafiki Mother and auntie needs at the Village.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

The first term of the year has ended and the second has begun. The parent teacher conferences were a blessing to the teachers, as many parents expressed their gratitude for the solid, Christian education their children are receiving.

Praises:

We are thankful for successful registration of our upper school students to take the national exams.

We are thankful for the physical healing and return of an upper school math teacher.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the school staff to seek to meet our term two goals: teachers in 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

Praises:

Paperwork for the accreditation process continues to move along in the process.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the accreditation of RICE to be completed soon.

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:

We are still waiting upon the Lord for the rains to come. They are a month overdue and it is very dry. 

Spiritually we are all being nourished by Book Five of the Psalms. 

Praises:

God protected and provided for the Village while the Klauke’s and Pedersons were richly blessed at the Home Office Enrichment week and had time for family visits and needed appointments. 

Thirteen musicians from our partner churches have completed a six-week course on church music from our Music Dean Rachel King. Participants are encouraging their churches to engage in more hymn singing as a result. 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

grass planted on our new soccer pitch to grow well and rains to help it establish.

strong support from our church partners in recruiting staff, assisting our graduates, and promoting our November Classical Christian Education Conference.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Some of our children still need to connect with families outside of Rafiki. This is a concern as the older they get the more they feel a need for this and realize their situation. 

Praises:

We are able to increase music opportunities for our children and they love it. 

Most children went out for Home Stays during the Easter break, developing stronger bonds with family and surrogate families. 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to help us understand how to encourage, motivate, and enable resident children to love learning and put forth their best effort every day.

God’s grace, wisdom, love, and counsel for some children who repeatedly struggle with right behavior.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Our second term commenced on April 29 and will last for fourteen weeks.

School enrollment will increase by ten students due mainly to our opening up another grade one class. This will bring the total number of students in our schools to 277.

Praises:

The end-of-term recitation went very well with 167 parents attending. Those who came early got a taste of how we teach reading, from our three-year-old class through high school, and were encouraged to develop a good reading culture at home.  

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

improved academic performance in most subjects, especially for the older students.

insight into how to help the teachers motivate the older students to apply themselves to their studies.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

We have welcomed fifteen new students into our program. There is interest from some partner church schools to hire our teacher graduates. 

Praises: 

We had a positive first meeting with the new Head of Education Department regarding the development of our Diploma course.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to provide for our graduates to receive national certification without taking a national exam.

the PUEA Senate to approve our Diploma course by June of this year. 

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Not much product has come in from our groups. 

Praises:

We have been able to send much of our stock to the Home Office this month and will send more with our flow of short-term missionaries.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God’s guidance for new product possibilities and fresh ideas.

time to visit every widow’s group to encourage them with Bible study and product development.

Liberia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Having returned from our school break everyone is ready to get busy on pre-rainy season projects and school. Jeremy and the maintenance team have several things they wish to accomplish like developing a circle drive and building a shelter for our day students to come to on rainy mornings. Christie is busy with RICE students and Brittany continues to mentor our Rafiki Mothers to make sure our residents are cared for. Julie is still working to establish good team work among teachers and students. 

Praises:

Praise God for the national staff who truly capture the vision of what we are here for. Many have children in our school and rejoice to see what God is giving them daily.

We praise God that through the daily challenges He is by our side and as our Bible study says, “He is our helper.”

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

health, wisdom, and endurance as we stretch ourselves to accomplish the tasks before us. 

unity and grace to abound among our staff and missionaries.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

We had forty-six children go out with living relatives on Home Stay. This has been a very positive experience for the Rafiki children in Liberia. It helps them find a part of their identity and relate to their people, speak their language, and eat their food. The remaining children enjoyed roller skating and playing basketball in the new RICE gymnasium.

Praises:

The children had a wonderful experience at the National Track and Field Competition. Several of our children got first place in the different events. They are even more motivated to practice for next year. 

We were happy to have all of our children return safely from their Home Stays. 

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

good health since the rainy season is about to start which brings a lot of sickness to the Rafiki children, day students, and national staff. 

open eyes, ears, and hearts to receive the Gospel.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

Here we go again! Term two is up and running. There have been a number of changes and we have shifted some teachers around and made way for dividing our PP1 and PP2 classes. Divide and conquer is the plan. This change will give our students more individual attention and also allow us to further train our RICE graduates for a future using the Rafiki curriculum.

Our junior secondary students were privileged to participate in the Liberia national track and field completion last month and performed well in their individual races.

Our seventh and ninth grade students continue to prepare for their national exams in May.

Praises:

We thank God for His ever-present love as we navigate relationships with teachers and students.

We are thankful that the Lord continues to bring new students to us and give us the opportunity to impact their lives.

We praise the Lord for the fine young ladies and gentlemen that we work with each day.

We are thankful the Lord continues to direct their lives.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

our students to desire to do everything “as unto the Lord” with excellence and integrity. 

God to work in hearts here every day.

our sixth-grade graduates and ninth grade students to study well and be prepared for 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! 

Praises:

Praise for the Vogels who were an asset to our team and were able to help to run our RICE program during a very busy time. They will be missed by all.

Students continue to come with completed Bible lessons. Shy students are sharing more often.

Praise for God’s leading on the time to take in new students. We will wait until the third term (July).

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a meeting to be scheduled with the United Methodist University to work out the details on transferring credits so our graduates will be able to continue on for a B.S. or receive their A.A. officially.

Our church partner school to hire our graduates. 

students to master the Rafiki curriculum so they will be excellent teachers.

Rafiki Widows Program

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

this program to get started.

Malawi

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.” Psalm 118:1 The Lord has enabled this Village with nearly 270 students, and nearly 100 nationals (including the twenty-one RICE teacher trainees) to complete term one on March 21 joyfully. We staged a field day of sports, a Recitation where senior secondary students recited poetry and presented music, and grateful parents attended the Parent/Teacher conferences. We have a wait list of fifty preschoolers eager for enrollment. For all of these and more, because salvation is our greatest need, God’s lovingkindness is our continual song of praise.

Praises:

Even when we go through difficulties and trials in the midst of few missionary workers, the Lord is good.

The nationals are being stretched and trained to take up greater responsibility in their assignments.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

full-time long-term missionary workers to be sent to Malawi to be the Headmaster, RICE Dean, and Plant Manager.

wisdom and encouragement as we seek accreditation of the RICE program affiliated to the University of Livingstonia. 

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Eighty-seven residents spent two and one-half weeks with extended families and partner church families during the school break. All reported eye-opening experiences and a deeper appreciation of the blessings God has proffered them in Rafiki.

Our second jumble sale comprising good-condition clothing and footwear that the residents no longer fit, was capably organized and staged by a group of eager beaver residents under the leadership of our assistant ChildCare administrator and activities coordinator, Martha Shaba. They all speak fondly about the planning, processing, sorting, packing, experiences as the best part of their time together! The Village is truly a training opportunity for the youths.

Praises:

We are thankful for the Rafiki Mothers and ChildCare administration and thank God for the training they are receiving commensurate with the growth and developmental stages of the residents.

Residents have turned around in their heart attitudes and behavior because God has heard many prayers and the Rafiki Mothers are thrilled. Rafiki Mothers are being trained to pray for each resident by name assiduously before they are in “trouble”.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom to guide the older residents in looking ahead at higher education post-secondary studies, vocational training and apprenticeship, career options and their future rooted in Christ Jesus and His Word.

Rafiki Mothers who joyfully train and step up to more food preparation responsibility as the Village reduces redundant service staff.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

God brought Mrs. Ellen Mulaga, a humble rehired (from retirement) university lecturer in chemistry to head up the science department. The science faculty is thrilled and working well with Ellen. God added a new agriculture teacher, Mr. Phaniso Mumba to secondary school. 

We have twenty-two preschoolers from the community on the wait-list for preprimary one. 

Praises:

Teachers In-Service was well-received as thirty-two teachers worked together to prepare schemes of work, write lesson plans, and prepared themselves to resume the teaching of the Psalms in the Rafiki Bible Study.

God showed us the many, many pieces of outfitting and supplies that are already in the Village and very appropriate for the secondary school rooms.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to help us organize the preschool, specifically in terms of providing the teachers to enable us to admit all twenty-five students on the wait-list.

term two to be strong and victorious as teachers (together with the ChildCare program) set up study hall for the secondary grade students.

God to bring us a new music and art teacher for secondary school to replace the previous one who left without notice.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

RICE Malawi graduated two teachers on March 21, 2019. They expressed gratitude to God and Rafiki for the blessed opportunity. Both graduates have ready opportunity for work in church schools.

Praises:

Interim RICE Dean Kim Yeo has been trained by Cathy Brown to support RICE for term two.

Nineteen teacher trainees are expected in five cohorts for term two.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

all teacher trainees to be enabled by God to continue training with excellence and integrity.

partner church schools to have the capacity to employ RICE graduates and use the Rafiki curriculum in their schools.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Mrs. Ruth Nyondo is enthusiastically engaging two groups of women from the Synod of Livingstonia, Church of Central Africa Presbyterian to undertake a sample trial of patchwork quilting projects.

Praises:

The two groups of women are excited to try a new product beyond their familiar yarn weaving floor rugs.

The Rafiki Bible Study (Matthew) is a gift that the women want to study.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the sample quilts to be sewn with excellence and to be sent to Rafiki Home Office for approval.

God to raise the leaders among the women to support Mrs. Ruth Nyondo.

Nigeria

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Short rains have begun and there is a new freshness in the air and green of the grass and plants. 

Plateau State has come through the elections with peace in most areas.

Praises:

Term one of the Rafiki School has ended and the students enjoyed the Easter break with family and relatives. 

Exit exams for senior high school have begun as well as the exams for university and college admissions.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

students to do well on all exams. 

The Village to be ready for the return of the rains—more grass, more power issues, more leaks, etc.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Praises:

The students are studying for their exams.

The plan is proceeding for the utilization of cottages as students leave for higher education.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wise use of our Rafiki Mothers as their cottages are emptied.

Rafiki Education Program

Praises:

Teachers are settling in to the class schedules for the new year.

WAEC and JAMB testing has begun. The students are serious.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

wisdom for our eighteen students taking exams, all of whom want to attend the University of Jos.

the transition for these students out of the Village and for the leadership of the new senior secondary three students.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

With the end of the January-April term, we said goodbye to our senior student who completed the three-year study. He will begin next term in the Rafiki School teaching preprimary one and then coming to RICE to help with math. 

Praises:

Most of the students have been promoted to the next level.

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

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the work that must be done to bring us into alignment with the University of Mkar where required.

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

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

The Home Office brought the order for products and the women were delighted.

Praises:

The new order is in process.

We are thankful to see the excitement of the women to have work to do

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:

It’s hard to believe that twenty-five years have passed since the Rwandan genocide when nearly one million people were killed in just 100 days. This year has been eventful but peaceful and for the first time, our resident students attended a remembrance ceremony at our local memorial.

Praises:

It has been a calm and peaceful memorial period.

Our final (for now) cottage to classroom conversion is nearly finished and soon our cottage to library conversion will begin.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

continued excellence of work as we complete our senior secondary school and laboratory buildings.

God’s continued provision of dedicated men and women to serve Him here in Africa with Rafiki.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Our four remaining boys were processed by the National Commission for Children during this term break and are now living with families outside the Village. Thankfully, three of the four are still attending school at Rafiki.

Praises:

All of our children had excellent visits on the term break and have returned safely.

With the addition of our new music teacher, Sarah, many of our children will once again be taking private music lessons.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

our four boys who left us this term break to make quick adjustments to their new home environments and for Innocent who will no longer be able to attend school at Rafiki.

our wisdom as we strategize plans for a good homework setting in each cottage so our students will be able to excel in their learning.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

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

Praises:

Dear prayer warriors: You prayed specifically for two young men, and there has been a dramatic change in them. Let me share a note I was handed, written by Honorie. “Dear Teacher Vicky, I am sorry for how I have been acting at school, like dealing with Teachers, disturbing in class, and not respecting teachers and not like subjects. I promise I will do better from now on. I will respect all the school rules, and respect even the students, and I will soften my heart. I have done lots of bad things but please forgive me for all the bad things I did. And I will have no detentions at all and may God forgive me too, for not respecting His word, and God, may I have a heart of forgiveness. Sincerely, Honorie” He hasn’t even had a warning this term, and is doing all his work on time and with excellence. Thank you for praying!

We’re off to a good start for term two, and Sarah, our new music teacher, has done a great job preparing an Easter song with the secondary students, and will soon begin piano lessons.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

Honorie to continue honoring God by his behavior, and that Faustin will also continue to improve.

our students to thrive academically and spiritually, and to develop into godly future leaders and contributors in Rwanda.

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 widow’s ability to continue to get the appropriate colors and supplies needed for their work.

Tanzania

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The lack of rain in our region is becoming a cause for concern as the long rains should have begun about a month ago. Most Tanzanians depend at least in part on small-scale farming for their food supply, so a drought is truly disastrous.

Laboratory construction continues with good quality but slow progress. The biology lab is receiving the finishing touches, and the chemistry and physics labs are coming along, too. We expect to have an inspection of the finished biology lab this month which should result in re-opening our secondary school.

Praises: 

We praise God for the peace and unity we enjoy in Tanzania, in Moshi, and here among the students and staff of Rafiki Village.

We thank God for our partners in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania Northern Diocese as they generously assist, encourage, and support our work.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for: 

good rains to come in time to produce a strong crop of staples like corn and beans.

continued progress in the process of registering both the secondary school and RICE.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

We only have about eight children that do not have relatives able to take them for Home Stays and we are praying that we can connect these children with families in the community in the future.

Our eighth and ninth graders continue to attend the government school while we await approval of our Rafiki Secondary School.

Praises: 

We thank God for safety as our oldest students travel back and forth along a high-traffic road to Maili Sita Secondary School every day.

We thank God for the opportunity for most of our children to spend some time outside the Village during spring break so that they can form or maintain relationships with extended family and community members.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for: 

God to send rain so that the Rafiki children’s extended family members will be able to provide food for themselves.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

We reached the two-week midterm break on April 12. Even after fourteen straight weeks of school without any breaks, the students and teachers still finished strong. We closed the school with an excellent Recitation where students were able to present some of the things that they have been learning in science and language arts. It seemed quite fitting that our memory verse for the last week of school was from Psalm 126:3, “The Lord has done great things for us; we are glad.”

Praises:

God brought many parents to the recitation so that they could see all that He has done in the first quarter of the year and opened up opportunities for parent-teacher communication.

God brought us a short-term missionary for three weeks who was able to provide some new ideas for supporting students who are struggling academically.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

teachers and students returned from their break with renewed energy and excitement for teaching and learning.

God to give us guidance and wisdom as we think through all that will be required to provide secondary education all the way through the advanced level.

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

We welcomed five new students into RICE 1A this term, and we are happy to see them making good progress in their new courses.

Our registration with the government has slowed down again, and we are hoping that our partners in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Tanzania will be able to move the process along again.

Praises: 

Our students have had good attendance this term and are consistently arriving on time and prepared for class.

We thank God for the blessing of starting every day with a time of Bible study and prayer together.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to open opportunities for our students to be Sunday school teachers and leaders in their churches so that they can use what they’re learning for His glory and the good of others.

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 women have been particularly eager to work on our most recent order as concern over the lack of rain grows daily. Having a source of income besides subsistence farming is a safety net for them.

Praises: 

We thank God for His individual care for each of the women in the program. He knows each one by name.

We are thankful for the people who purchase products at the Rafiki Exchange, on the website, and at special events.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to direct Program Coordinator Sara Nickels to find a way to transport some of the new product to the Home Office by the beginning of June.

timely and high-quality completion of the current order to provide needed cash for the women and their families.

Uganda

Rafiki Village

Updates:

Lynn and David Kumpe, who arrived in January to serve as long-term missionaries, received work visas at the end of March. There were a few delays in this process, but we are grateful the visas were finally attained—and that the visas are for three years!

Praises:

The painting of the senior secondary school was completed over the school break.

We are thankful for Lynn and David Kumpe’s work visas.

Prayer Request—Please pray for:

God to powerfully transform hearts and lives through the Rafiki Bible Study. 

the Village administrator to be able to meet over the next quarter with key leaders of the Anglican and Presbyterian Church.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Term one at Rafiki was completed successfully and we had fifty-seven of our residents go for Home Stay for two weeks of the break between term one and two. They stayed with relatives or church host families and it is an important part of learning to eventually live away from the Village as they mature and become adults. The residents who were not able to go on Home Stay participated in lots of activities at the Village: gardening, Village maintenance projects, community service projects, extra reading, extra studying, lots of bike riding (a favorite here!), assisting in the kitchen with meals, and a field trip to the Martyrs Shrines here in Kampala.

Praises:

We are thankful for a smooth Home Stay for fifty-seven resident students and for God’s provision through their Home Stay hosts.

Resident student Diana (grade level twelve) passed the Associated Board of the Royal School of Music oboe theory exam.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

our ChildCare administrative staff, Rafiki Mothers, and hall parents to sincerely model a spirit of gratitude and thanksgiving to God for the residents in their care.

a good yield from our Village garden, and for the recently repaired electrified fence that is around our garden to be a good deterrent for the monkeys who like to raid our garden plots.

Rafiki Education Program

Updates:

We are thankful for how God continues to grow our school: two teachers joined the faculty at the start of term two, also, student enrollment continues to increase. We are especially thankful for a handful of new senior secondary day students who enrolled last term.

Praises:

We are thankful for the new teachers and senior secondary students.

The school administration, composed of four national teachers, successfully started term two while the headmaster was away on furlough.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a continued increase in enrollment.

the teachers’ continued growth in their understanding and value of Christian classical education. 

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

Westminster Christian Institute Uganda has an application pending with the National Council of Higher Education (NCHE) to allow the RICE Program to become accredited under that institution.

Rafiki has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding which can result in accreditation of the RICE program in Uganda.

Praises:

RICE had a successful term one with 87.5% of the students obtaining a 3.0 GPA or better and one student obtaining a 4.0 GPA.

The students have enthusiastically and energetically started term two.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

a successful final report from the NCHE inspection team and final approval by the NCHE.

protection from accidents and illness of all students during term two.  

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Our Acholi Quarters craftswomen gave grateful testimonies about how they have used the profits from sales to Rafiki. They offered some exciting new samples, including Christmas decorations, to their product list.

Praises:

The Acholi ladies were able to construct a new purpose-built latrine near their homes.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

God to continue to increase sales of our products through the various outlets in the United States. 

our craftswomen, the weavers in particular, to find a few new local markets for their products. They have become so skilled that they can work quickly and produce more items.

Zambia

Rafiki Village

Updates:

The teachers college and Rafiki School closed for three weeks and are now opening for the second term.  We took advantage of a nearly empty Village to do painting and construction projects, as well as some deep cleaning!

Praises:

Staff and missionaries were given the strength, wisdom, and courage to manage operations with a minimum of staff.

The Rafiki School enjoyed a God-glorifying end to the school term and RICE celebrated another cohort’s finish of the program.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

perseverance for all national staff as they teach, care give, cook, maintain, and keep the grounds of this Village.

God’s words to us in the Psalms to be working powerfully in the hearts and minds of all who are reading, and listening every day.

Rafiki ChildCare Program

Updates:

Of the seventy-five children who live in Rafiki Village Zambia, only eighteen remained for the school break. The other fifty-seven visited extended family for two and a half weeks, leaving the Village very quiet.

Praises:

We are thankful for wonderful national assistants who orchestrated the trip for nineteen children to the Copperbelt and the many others who went to stay with extended family.

We are thankful for the safe return of all fifty-seven children from their school break visits and the preparations completed to be ready to return to school.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

the Lord to give opportunity for Rafiki Mothers, missionaries, and other staff to address ungodly sights and actions children may have experienced while they were away from the Rafiki Village.

everyone to adjust quickly to the routine of school and a rigorous schedule, taking advantage of the opportunity to learn.

Rafiki Education Program

Praises:

We are thankful for a good close to term one, followed by a good break for teachers and students.

Praise God for the Rafiki Bible Study in Psalms with the insightful and helpful lessons for all classes.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

all teachers and students to have increased hunger for God’s Word.

students to grow in love for all they study.

each class to be characterized by joy in learning and respect for others.

teachers and students to be eager to return when school reopens April 15. 

Rafiki Advanced Learning Institute Program

Updates:

We had a great first term and finished with six completing their studies after three years at RICE.  In addition, in April we added a new 1A cohort with fifteen new students from different places in Zambia.  We start the second term of 2019 with an increase of +9 students for a total of forty-eight in levels 1A, 2C, 3A, 3C, and 3D.

Praises:

God has blessed us with a strong finish for all our students.

He has blessed the Farrands with being able to finish strong as first term deans of the RICE program.

Despite many challenges—financial, health, family issues—all our students are returning to further their education.

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—for her complete recovery from sinus cancer surgery before she starts radiation treatments. 

Karen Farrand as she teaches music to 1A students and Richard Farrand as he teaches art to 1A students.

the RICE deans to help the 1A students get off to a very strong and good start at RICE and for the students to do the work necessary to stay in the program.

Rafiki Widows Program

Updates:

Plans are moving forward for Judy Stokes to train four to five widows in advanced sewing techniques.

Praises: 

We are thankful for the partnership and cooperation of Reformed Church in Zambia leaders and support staff in the sewing endeavor.

Prayer Requests—Please pray for:

health, wisdom, and energy for Judy to train the four to five ladies for four months.