An Exceptional Year! An Exceptional Hug!
A year is ending. A very strange year! In October, just when the Swedish Public Health Authority had eased off the restrictions concerning us who are 70+, Li and I, allowed ourselves a BIG hug. A unique hug in this hugless year 2020.
Now we are back to the hugglessness. But nevertheless have we been able to meet with children and grandchildren since we came back to Sweden in the beginning of April. Oftentimes outside but also via Internet having had what we call ”Skype-dinners” together, sometimes lasting for 3 hours! A fantastic alternative, thanks to modern technique.
The Swedish autumn is awesome! And this is the first one for KeA in 11 years, and for me the second. We have enjoyed seeing the leaves change into brilliant colours, then fall and leave naked branches and twigs ready to let through the soft autumn light and open new horizons. Yes, we have even enjoyed November’s fogs and fresh gusts of winds. But December so far, with a gray and cloudy sky with no sun at all and complete darkness already at 4 p.m. we find quite tiresome.
In the middle of August our friends from Öckerö, Erik and Maria, invited us to the West Coast and a tour in their motorboat. A great experience! Not the least the beauty of nature, wild and untouched, and then to fellowship and talk ”Africa”, and other important things with these dear friends, made it perfect.
Saturday the 26th of August I got my life’s surprise! Unexpectedly (to me!), five of our six children (Emil, who lives up north, unfortunately couldn’t come) appeared in our garden with whistles and partypops, dancing and singing. KeA had lured me away for a while and this happened as we came back. I got so surprised that I cried out loud and it took a while until I settled. Then I was invited to a party not of this world at our veranda. A whole day with my beloved kids! They offered me delicious foods, self composed songs and music, sharing of memories, witty games and a video that made me laugh to tears … and more. All this just because I had turned 70.
In September we were able to attend a wedding. We have missed many weddings during past years which made it a great joy to be present when my late brother’s son Mattias got married to Natalia, a lovely girl from Ukraine. The wedding had to be downscaled because of Corona restrictions, but it was fantastic anyway.
During All Saints celebrations my brother Tommy and my two sisters-in-law visited us. We spent some unforgotten days together. Since two of my siblings left us last year the fellowship with the ones that are still here becomes even more precious. We have one another just on loans! Therefore, let’s take care of one another!
Of course, there are many more highlights worth to mention but I can’t tell about all of them.
A New Turn Point!
Loki has been very close in our hearts, prayers and thoughts. And suddenly things changed! Charlotte and Thorkild, the Danish couple who took over after us, have resigned because of health and family matters. They will be leaving Loki in mid December. We have been asked by Children’s Mission to go back to Loki to help during a short period. Because there are no others who know the work in full, we have said yes. When in addition, our neighbours spontaneously say, when we told them what had happened: ”We will help you take care of the house, water the plants, take care of your mail”, we feel it’s okay to go. Our children have also given us their support, which is very important to us. Furthermore, our church and some individual friends support us with prayers and funds to pay for travel and staying in Nairobi. We are leaving on New Year’s Day with, as we hope, a negative Corona test in our luggage. Together with CMS (Children’s Mission Sweden), CMA (Children’s Mission Africa) and our local team we hope to establish a new sustainable leadership for the work in Loki. We will be in Loki for three months.
A lot of things are at stake. The education and future of 600 children and about 60 youths, 100 children who get a very needed food package each week, women and men’s livelihood and not the least possibility for people in Loki to hear the gospel.
Charlotte and Thorkild have achieved a lot during a very hard time. The Corona crises hit just when we left at the end of March. All of a sudden they were in a situation with lot of new challenges that nobody could have imagined. Together with CMS, our local team and the Lord they have managed. Restrictions have been kept, food distributed and most of the teachers and staff have been given work in order to keep their salaries. Some of the ANA women have started a new farming initiative when local income has been less. We hope that Charlotte and Thorkild have gained something in their struggle and that the Lord will bless them in what’s laying ahead. We know that many in Loki will miss them!
Well, this will be all for now. It remains to wish you a MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Your friends Birgitta & KeA