Daily Archives: July 26, 2003

Ten Things I liked the Best About the Congo

Ten Things I liked the Best About the Congo

Maybe its just the warmth of this night but I am reminiscing about some good Congo memories.
1. Walking in the light of a full moon hearing the people in the neighboring village sing and dance as the drums beat.

2. Walking at night under a sky so lit by stars that no full moon was needed to see.

3. The scent of Frangi pangi and coffee blossoms

4. Sitting around the fire talking to good friends, the kids roasting ears of corn.

5. Floating in small warm Lake Kwada while on vacation

6. The variety of friends – Congolese, Belgian, Portuguese, Dutch, American and British. Merchants and missionaries, priests, sisters and co -workers

7. New Years at Bobadi. Playing Monopoly with Pere Marcel translating the chance cards from Dutch for us

8. Riding my motorbike with the warm wind on my face, little arms encircling me as we ride.

9. Bananas – just at the peak of ripeness – a whole stalk hanging there. Pick and eat.

10. Incredible hospitality, incredible generosity

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Filed under Day to Day

Refugees – Waiting

Our congregation has chosen to sponsor two young men, refugees, to come to Canada. We have been in the process for four years now. The guys are from the Congo and are presently in the Cameroon waiting. They are in Cameroon because that is where they were asked to go to have their refugee interviews. Before that they were in the Central African Republic. They left for the Cameroon just before civil war broke out in earnest in the Central African Republic. Before that they walked about 300 Kms to leave the Congo at the height of the civil war in north western Congo. Their lives have been in limbo ever since.

These guys are fortunate enough. We send them the bare necessities they need to survive. And we have been able to help them enroll in carpentry classes and English classes while they wait. Can you imagine waiting so long with total uncertainty?

MCC is the organization under which we are sponsoring. They and we are getting frustrated to the point of looking for answers from some people higher up on the bureaucratic ladder. There is no reason for the long delays in getting refugees to Canada. These are legitimate refugees with groups ready to sponsor them and help them make the adjustment to Canadian life.

Proverbs 3: 27 to 28
“Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it is in your power to help them. If you can help your neighbor now, don’t say ‘Come back tomorrow, and then I’ll help you.’ “

I don’t think the immigration people live by this rule! The whole system seems to be set up to keep people out not to help those who qualify to come.

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Filed under Dealing with stuff