Stay Awake night
Let us start with something that was exciting for the Aphiwe youth and a bit crazy on the volunteers side …. We hosted a stay awake night, this means everyone was to stay awake from 5pm Friday through to 7am on Saturday. We had planned this for a while now, seeing they never want to sleep when we go on camps. So this was there evening to show us what they are made of. We started off by teaching them some new Sunday schools songs from Australia led by Bro. Sam Collins, then we played a few games with them, this involved word searches in the Bible, charades, and many more active games to get them really tired. There were also a few rules. The biggest rule we had was NO SLEEPING. There where a few children that started to fall asleep early the night but they got a little something to remind them not to sleep. After supper we showed them a movie just to give them a little bit of rest. The night when really well but unfortunately some people fell asleep (Hendri included), round about 7am we served them some breakfast, and the winning team with all the games got their prizes and then they all went on their way home to find a nice soft spot to go and sleep. It took us about 3 days to recover from staying awake that long but we sure had a good time.
The cuddle project is going really well, Leona started her crèche course again with a full house on both days. The ladies are getting to know us well and they love to share their ideas. We have a waiting list of over 100 names again and we are moving into our last crèche course for this year. Liezl and myself have started with a basic cooking course at Aphiwe Centre, we teach them the basics of cooking different meals, this will help them to find a better job one day. The ladies can’t believe there eyes when they see I am giving the course (who said a man can’t cook). The first course went extremely well, we had 13 ladies attend. We are generating a waiting list for that course too. We can see that any course we run in Tembisa there are always people who attend and they find it very helpful. We are starting a second course in the beginning of September where we already have 20 ladies signed up. Another course we do is the music and movement classes, where the teachers that attend the crèche course come and learn more songs and dances that they can teach their children in the different crèches. This course is allot of fun because you teach the ladies as though they are the children so all these ladies from ages 28 – 60 are dancing around and doing the movements.
Grace, one of the crèche teachers had her crèche upgraded this last month when we had a group of volunteers over, we had the record of the youngest volunteer to help out, he was 8 years old.. We got there and the crèche was the size of a single garage with a bit of length added on. We had to dust down the walls and sweep out the room, take down all her posters and take out the cupboards. Then the fun started, we were trying to paint a base coat along all the walls but unfortunately the more you painted the more the cements on the walls stuck to your roller and came off with the new paint, so after a while you were throwing on so much paint against the wall to just try keep the wall together. After the paint finally stayed on the wall and dried, Lilandi drew an educational mural on the wall, the theme being “under the sea”. We all then chose a colour and started painting the mural as colourful and bright as we could. We also made a border all along the room where we painted the children shads and some shapes. Carpets were put in to make it cleaner and warmer and so the children didn’t have to sit on cold cement, they were also given blankets that were donated and posters were cleaned and put back on the walls.. Job well done J
Another minor upgrade we did was painting the wall outside of the Tswelopele Centre (The community centre in Boksburg). We painted two educational murals and then painted the class of 2011’s hand prints too, the children had so much fun washing all the paint off of their tiny hands and luckily we had no children getting paint on each other or on their clothes…pheew… The launch of the centre was a few weeks later and everyone was very happy with the way it looked and the children’s singing performance.
As we do every month, we had donations for food parcels again and had 2 volunteers from the UK help us make 200 food parcels. The children are so happy and grateful when they receive their food parcel with just enough food to keep a family of 4 going for a week or so. They sing us songs and say up thank you poems they have learnt. The older grannies and Grandpa’s we give parcels to can almost not walk so you go and give it to them in their homes and others are old but still have enough energy to walk to where we are and then do a little dance for us, they always have smiles on their faces and it is such a blessing to be able to be the ones to see their smiling faces when they receive the food.
We here in Gauteng have started hosting Study weekends. This is where we will invite all the brothers and sisters from SA to join us for a weekend where we go camping and in that weekend have a specific topic in the Bible to study. Our first one went really well and we had many studies on prayer. We learnt where, how, who, what and when to pray. Some time after this weekend we were eating out and after saying a prayer for the two of us, a lady standing in the same restaurant came up to us and said it is so great to see young people like us still pray before we eat. This just made us realize again that people are always watching you and that you should live as close to Jesus did so that they may come to know him better.
The last study weekend that just passed we looked at “Who moved the stone” or as we like to call it now after the study “Who took the napkin”, we had a look at the events prior to Jesus’ burial and the events that happened at the tomb the time of Jesus’ resurrection. Comparing the 4 gospels and seeing which events were similar and which had more information of things happening we could draw out a nice timeline on what happened when. One unanswered question we had was “Who took the napkin”. Our next weekend will be in Our Heavenly Fathers beautiful and magnificent mountains.
The memorial meeting at Aphiwe Centre is going well. We have more people attending. We have two people who have asked to be baptized and we are so excited about that. The Sunday school has moved to the afternoons so that the youth class can stay longer and attend the meeting too. Many of the new people attending our meeting have come to know us through the Crèche course and the Tuesday evening Bible class. We are staring a “Learn to read your Bible effectively” course to get more people to know their Bibles and that way come closer to God and Jesus. We have 2 camps coming up where many of the people that attend the meeting and Bible classes are wanting to come along and meet new brothers and sisters and feel the amazing fellowship that we have in our faith.
We have had some good news from a brother that attended the Pretoria Congolese meeting, he is now living in a refugee’s camp in another African country but sent news that he has met some other Christadelphian brothers and sisters in the camp and they are now preaching in there to all the people and holding studies. The Pretoria Congolese meeting is going well, we have more and more people attending and its all because of the preaching the brothers and sisters do there themselves, we help with bringing through Bible courses and Sunday school lessons.
We are looking forward to the next few months where there will be P2P weeks and then the International Family Bible Conference here in the beautiful Drakensberg. It would be nice to God willing share all these wonderful events with everyone.
Hendri and Liezl Viljoen