As part of our recent Give Light offering, Blackhawk was able to fund the construction of a well on the grounds of a church in Aweil, South Sudan. The church can now offer life-giving physical and spiritual water to its community. Our South Sudan & Kenya mission trip team was able to help host a well opening celebration in January. Pattie Newgent was one of our team members, here’s her story:
When I first applied to be a part of the team that made the trip to South Sudan and Kenya, I sincerely felt ill equipped. Having had MS for so many years, I feared being more of a hindrance than an asset to the group, but as Pastor Kevin says, “start with yes” and so I went.
but as Pastor Kevin says, “start with yes”
After 13 hours in the air we landed in Ethiopia and then took a short flight to Juba (South Sudan) after a 6-hour layover. We made it through an incredibly small, incredibly congested airport and made our way to our first destination which was a short visit with an orphanage.
The next day we were once again on a plane headed for Aweil where we would take part in the well dedication ceremony. After landing on a dirt airstrip occupied with many goats we walked over to the pile of luggage on the airstrip and grabbed our suitcases. We then proceeded to walk over to some very excited pastors who would be our transportation during our stay.
We got settled in at the nicest hotel (that didn’t have electricity during the day but ran a generator from dusk till dawn). From there we visited a church made of sticks and some kind of thatch but filled with exuberantly joyful pastors who were thrilled to receive a word from Pastor Ferguson as well as Bibles we gifted them. It was off to meet the governor from there for a visit and the gifting of another Bible. We eventually made our way to the well dedication ceremony of the well that our church had helped to fund.
What a celebration this dedication was! So much time and effort had been made to ensure that we knew how very thankful they were for our contribution but even moreso to God who is truly the provider.
The dances, the speeches were overwhelming. Pastor Ferguson spoke once again ending his speech with an altar call. Over 1/3 of the village answered that call. What a beautiful sight to see so many changed lives.
This simple structure will be a part of changing the lives in this village for a long time.
I went on this trip hoping to bless even one person and came home understanding what I’d heard so very many missionaries say….. I went to bless them and returned truly blessed myself.