27 Jan

Nigeria here I come!

Hello one and all and sorry for the long silence surrounding the trip. As you know I was supposed to head out to Nigeria in Oct / Nov last year and for many different reasons that trip was postponed until now. Tomorrow Morning at 0620, Kent (my boss) and I fly to Abuja via Frankfurt.
You probably haven’t seen it on the news because of the disaster in Haiti, but in the last week and a half there has been a lot of violence around Jos, Nigeria, where we am headed.

From recent BBC reports:
– “At least 265 people are believed to have died in religious rioting in Jos in recent days.”
– “…some of the 17,000 displaced people were returning home, but others had decided to flee the city itself.”
– “Up to 150 bodies have been found in Kuru Karama village, 30km (18 miles) from the city of Jos, where the violence erupted last Sunday.”
People on the ground have assured us that the situation is calming down, but there is still a dusk to dawn curfew (an improvement on the 24 hour curfew in place just a few days ago) and military on the streets.

We are going to Nigeria for a number of reasons:
– Kent needs someone to support him in his Nigeria-related responsibilities. This will be an orientation trip for me.
– We will be featuring a cluster of Nigerian languages that are just beginning translation as part of a 28-city English tour of the Bible overview drama From Eden to Eternity www.eden2eternity.org in a few months time. Kent and I will visit and shoot footage of some of the local people involved in and affected by this work.
– We will be meeting with as many of the ministries in Nigeria that we are linked with as possible. This is important for maintaining good relationships (vital in Africa) and introducing me. I am very excited to hear all that is going on, our support of just one partner organisation’s work is allowing translation work in 16 languages spoken by 1,685,000 people.
– We will spend several days in strategic meetings involving key local organisations and reps from other international partners who will have come from places as diverse Singapore, Nairobi and Texas.

I am very excited to go and experience Nigeria a few things you can be praying for,
1) Travelling mercies. It is all pre-arranged both into and around Nigeria
2) Health – that my knee holds up (it is doing much better), and that our bodies adjust to food and life
3) That all the various meetings are worth wile
4) That there is even more peace in Jos after last week.

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