Newsletter April 2017
Much of Kenya has been very dry, with some places experiencing a serious drought. However, in western Kenya it has been raining and many places are lush and green, especially where good care has been taken of the soil. The photograph below shows Rosalia and Sam in the medicinal plant production area in our own farm near Kisumu, where we practice what we teach. The Vetiver Grass hedges (you can see one running across the plot in the photograph) completely stops soil erosion. The trees which you can see growing abundantly in the background are carefully chosen to fit, and also contribute to a cooler environment. The mulch (which can be seen between the plants) protects the soil from the hot sun and heavy downpours. These are all important components of our teaching on caring for the soil by working with God’s creation.
Tree planting in memory of Mama Alice Akoth
On the 5th April 2017, the REAP team visited Kaminogedo Primary School in western Kenya. We went to plant some trees in memory of Mama Alice Akoth, who was one the teachers at the school and a faithful REAP contact person, who went to be with the Lord last year. The REAP team took trees from the nursery and helped to plant them. The Year 8 students, who had been Mama Alice’s students in year six, assisted in the planting. The REAP team were able to share some practical teaching with them about tree planting as well as caring for God’s creation. The students have committed themselves to making sure that the trees survive, by watering and caring from them out of respect for their former teacher.
Easter Tree planting as a practical part of Creation Care
REAP continues to be active in promoting Biblical models of caring for God’s wonderful Creation. We have recently linked up with Margaret Oluoch, a CMS Africa Champion, in promoting Tree Planting and natural medicines through the Anglican Church of Kenya (ACK). In March we shared the challenge of Creation Care with Rev John Mark Oduor, the Provincial Director of Mission. His response was that he could not promote what he was not doing himself, and as a result invited us to his home near Siaya in western Kenya. So on April 7th we had a day at his home church, planting trees and Natural Medicines, so that John Mark, as he commented, could lead by example. This fitted in well with the Easter Season tree planting where we combine the practical teaching on planting and caring for trees as part of creation care with a spiritual message from the Bible. The central imagery is the Tree of Life in Genesis 2 and Revelation 22, with the tree of the Cross at the centre of history.
Natural Medicine Training at the AIC Missionary Training College, Eldoret
For number of years REAP has given one week of Natural Medicine Training to the students at the AIC (African Inland Church) Missionary Training College in Eldoret. Rosalia and George went to Eldoret from 20th to 25th of March and had a very productive week of training, with a lot of practical emphasis. The students were very responsive and very appreciative of the training which they say will equip them for ministering in remote and difficult locations in the future.