Greetings. Sorry we haven't updated you in a while. We've been out of town for a few days, and before that we had lost our internet connection for a brief period. We went to a place called Nasuli for four days (Saturday to Tuesday). We went with the other families that are enrolled at the Midwifery school and we had a great time.
Nasuli is an old missionary community that is located about 4 hours north of Davao City. We all stayed in one house, which is pretty impressive considering there were nearly 30 of us. It was a great opportunity to get to know one another better.
We had a great time playing games together. We also made regular trips to the local watering hole. Within a five minute walk was a spring water pond that was great for swimming. The water was just cold enough to be refreshing, but warm enough that you could stay in it for a long time. It was surrounded by trees too, so no sunburn! I've included a picture of one of the small huts that was located at the edge of the pond.
On Sunday we all took a trip down the river. Everyone had brought innertubes, so we inflated them and took a nice lazy river ride. We rode on the river for over an hour and it was very relaxing. We saw lots of people washing their clothes at the edge of the river. We got to see some exotic vegetation, and some really big cattle at the river's edge too. I'm sure we were quite the spectacle ourselves!
It was great to get out of the city for a few days and see some more of this beautiful country. We drove for several hours through the mountains to get to Nasuli. I didn't get any decent pictures of the mountains because we were in a five vehicle caravan, so I didn't have the option of stopping every time I was awestruck by the view. I did try taking a picture from the window of the truck as we were driving. It didn't turn out well, but it gives you an idea of what the countryside looks like.
While at Nasuli, Matt discussed with us the idea of starting a "care group" for all the students and staff of the clinic. We're going to gather with the entire group (about 50 people) every other week to worship and pray together and somebody will facilitate a brief bible discussion each time we meet. It looks as though I will help with the worship.
We had a nice relaxing weekend, but today it was back to work. This morning I spent a couple of hours at the immigration office getting our tourist visa extensions. We're now legally allowed to stay until September 6, but by then we will have applied for our missionary visa.
Please be praying for Bethany. She is feeling pretty sick with a bad cold and a fever. We just found out that one of the kids that was with us this weekend has come down with the measles, so please pray that Bethany isn't suffering from the same. Also, please pray that her computer will continue to work well. We just found an infestation of tiny ants inside her MacBook (hundreds of tiny ants just poured out of her computer and onto her lap).
There is a possibility that I will be able to go on a brief trip to a remote island later this month for the purpose of scouting out a location for our first water filtration project. Please pray that the new engine is installed quickly on the boat that we will be taking.
Be blessed. Thank you for your continued prayer. We'll write again soon.