Erika Nossokoff & Teresa Pompa
Kristin Costanza, Dr. Chris & Brian Crook
While Dr. Chris is in town, he has been coming to worship at the Church of the Nativity (where I am a parishioner)with the Blattners. Our church has a cafe. So after mass, Dr. Chris has been stopping by the cafe to visit with parishioners, Nativity staff and former missionaries who have been to Faith Alive Hospital.
It has been so wonderful to have him in town. Dr. Chris was originally scheduled to visit a church in Colorado, but he was unable to go. So people have come from Colorado to visit with him and have also come to worship at the Church of the Nativity. Erika Nossokoff, the author of Notes From Nigeria blog, Dr. Chris's niece - Naomi (who also served at Faith Alive Hospital) who is going to school in Colorado and others have stopped by. It has been like a family reunion of Faith Alive at the Church of the Nativity lately! Sr. Oresoa has also arrived from the Anawim Home and is joining Dr. Chris at the Blattners. I'll post more on her visit later.
The Church of the Nativity has been an active partner in helping the Faith Alive Hospital and the Anawim Home. For Advent last year, the Church promoted the Advent Conspiracy, where money was raised to provide clean water at both sites. To date, three sites at the Anawim Home have been completed (Anawim Home - well fixed, Anawim Home for Unwed Mothers - borehole drilled, a satellite site in Kaduna for the mentally ill - borehole drilled). The Faith Alive Hospital has two sites completed (the Faith Alive Hospital - well fixed, a satellite clinic in Bakin Kogi - borehole drilled). God has been at work through the Church of the Nativity! The next site to receive a bore hole for clean water is the Hwol Yarje Farm Community, where the Faith Alive Community School is located. See the postings at the Nativity Nigeria blog.
Dr. Chris's visit ends soon (10/18). We will be sad to see him leave. I will remember my time serving in Nigeria for the rest of my life. The HFWA Foundation has now given me an opportunity to further serve the Anawim Home and Faith Alive Hospital. It is a blessing in my life. In a report from the drilling company in Bakin Kogi, for Faith Alive, the consultant tells of meeting a woman nicknamed "Do Something Before You Die". She said she wants to do something that positively touches peoples' lives before she dies. She preaches this philosophy to anyone she meets in life. A pretty good philosophy! I learned so much from the people in Nigeria. These people who have so little in the way of material things, have so much spiritual wealth. When we allow God to shape our hearts, we discover purpose and meaning to our lives. It is a joyful thought to realize we can be a chosen vessel for God.
Farewell dear friend Dr. Chris and give our love to your family and the Faith Alive Community. Let us all pray for him to have safe voyage home.
"For God so loved your broken heart that He died to give a reason for the world. Lift your sorrows to the One. A plan for you has just begun. Rest here in the hands that hold the world". Matthew West.