It is hard to believe that we left our home in Gallatin, TN, traveled to Nashville International Airport, and began our journey to our new home in Kisumu, Kenya one year ago today. To be fair, our journey to Kenya began many days before this particular one. However, we will focus on the past year for this moment. In a year’s time, we have seen so many amazing, sad, and powerful things in Kenya. As this anniversary approached, my mind was flooded with all of these experiences. We want to highlight some of the things we have completed in this time. We also want to be honest and transparent and say that not every day is filled with huge, supernatural moments. But, in being transparent, we can say that God has brought us to this place for “such a time as this.” He has led our steps, allowed so many in the United States to be a blessing to us, and he has allowed us to be a part of kingdom work.
During the summer months, we were a part of 14 medical clinics. We saw 6,279 patients in the mobile clinics, and 1602 professions of faith were made as a result of these clinics. After the conclusion of these clinics, we also helped orchestrate life-changing surgeries for three of the patients that we met that summer.
In the fall of 2014, we were part of the first ever micro-business sewing team. We saw women become empowered through sewing and receive the tools to become successful. In the fall of 2014 and winter 2015, we also helped coordinate the building of 9 church buildings in this time. We have adjusted the process for the purchase of building materials and have been able to build larger buildings for the same amount of money.
In January and February of 2015, we were able to help plan and be a part of two pastor training/pastor wives seminars, encouraging 50+ women and instructing 40+ men in sound doctrine. Over this time period we have also, through God’s grace and faithfulness, been able to make a substantial financial difference in the K4K program, saving $2,000 USD a month. We were able to accomplish this while adding two additional sites this year. Through the K4K program we are able to serve 5,500+ orphans and 500+ widows with meals three days a week. This year (2015), we have pioneered the launch of a micro-loan partner, who will invest in our pastors throughout the next three years and beyond. Our pastors will have the opportunity to expand their farming or other businesses to better provide for their families.
In February, March, and April of this year, we slowly also took on a new responsibility in our ministry called Miracle Power. Miracle Power is a children’s home that sits on the same property as the CMN Julia Huebner Medical Clinic, for which we are also responsible. The addition of the children’s home to our work has been challenging at times. However, it is so rewarding to see the Lord’s goodness in the rehabilitation of the children who call it home. Left with little opportunity, some of the children have been given up by their parents to live under the care of Miracle Power. Others are orphaned and this is their only hope to receive shelter, food, and the opportunity for education. The Lord has blessed the work at Miracle Power. We have 100+ chickens on campus that will be used to generate eggs for food and income once they are grown. A vegetable garden has been planted that will provide food for the children’s home, making it more sustainable. The ultimate goal is to share the love of Jesus with the children, so that they may grow to love him and serve him as adults.
Now into May, we have begun the preparations for our summer teams this year. We will have three medical teams this summer and a micro-business sewing team. We will also have our first summer intern with us, arriving before the teams and departing with the last team. The excitement is growing in the air for the eternal work that will take place throughout the course of the summer.
The spring months have also brought the preparations and plans for the arrival of our first child, Cooper Andrew Holloway. It is hard to believe that his time is already fast coming. He is due August 12th of this year. He will be born (hopefully) in Nairobi, and then we will return to Kisumu shortly after the birth. Our hearts are filled with anticipation for all the blessings to come the rest of the year with his entrance.
We have seen the LORD’S goodness and faithfulness in all that we have done. Still, since arriving in Kenya in 2014, we have had hard conversations with pastors, enacted church discipline, and created accountability throughout our programs. These may not be seen as “highlights,” but through these challenges we are able to strengthen the ministry happening in Kenya and the body of Christ. There have been sad days and hard days, days where we miss our family so terribly much. But through it all, we know that we are here for “such a time as this.” We are willing to serve Him no matter the cost.
We are so thankful for all of those who have supported us over the past year! We could not have made it without the support of so many. There have been many who have sojourned with us this year. Our financial supporters are who keep us here in Kenya. We are thankful to those who have mailed cards or sent notes of encouragement through email or Facebook. We are thankful for those who have prayed for us. We truly feel that there is a great cloud of witnesses around us each and every day.
We ask as we go into another year in Kenya that you would continue to pray for us. Pray for our safety as Kenya grows to be a more tumultuous place. Pray for the people of Kenya, that a revival would sweep the nation. Pray for our ministry, that we would follow the Lord’s leading in everything we do. Lastly, pray for those we love that we left back in the United States. We are encouraged as we begin another year in Kenya for all the hope, redemption, and restoration that he will bring to so many.