One of the students at the Bear Valley Bible Institute of Denver, Tony Johnson, continues his work with the Tamale Institute of Biblical Studies. His most recent report about the work is posted below. If you would like to see more of Tony’s posts with pictures, you can visit his blog site.
This will be my last update from Ghana. By this time next week I will be in Accra and my computer will be in Tamale where I am leaving it for the school. I plan on spending a few days in Accra before heading back to Denver on Saturday the 16th.
This week we saw the students complete their final exams for the first quarter classes, which were Survey of the Bible, Life of Christ 1, Becoming a Faithful Christian, and Writing Skills 1. After finishing their classes they all headed home for a two month break in order to complete their planting. Every student this year is a sustenance farmer, growing primarily yams, and count on their small fields to provide both food and money for their families during the coming year. With the rainy season beginning a little earlier than usual this year they have been anxious to get home and get started. They will come back on August 29th for their second quarter before taking another break for harvesting. Then back for the third, fourth and fifth quarters before next planting season. It has certainly been quiet here at the school since they left!
Sunday I went to teach at Tamale West church of Christ. The car that was supposed to pick me up broke down coming to get me, so I decided to ride the motorcycle over with one of the members who lives near the school on the back to give me directions. This was my first visit with this congregation, which is significantly smaller than the Tamale East congregation I had previously visited. They meet in a school room they rent for the day, and we had 60 in attendance which filled the room completely. Services were great up to the point that a storm blew in and the rain on the sheet metal roof made it impossible to hear. So we just waited it out for about 45 minutes, and when the rain let up enough that we could hear we completed our worship. I couldn’t help but wonder if we had a 45 minute delay in the middle of our worship service back home, would everyone just sit patiently and wait for it to resume? We got a little wet riding home afterwards, but all in all it was a great day. I was invited to return next Sunday to preach, so I will be looking forward to that.
The rest of the weekend was spent waiting for the power to come back on, which went out on Saturday night and finally returned late Monday afternoon. The biggest problem with not having power is trying to sleep without a fan. I finally put up a mosquito net so I can open the windows a little at night to hopefully get a cool breeze now and then. I have also learned that one of the problems with sleeping under a mosquito net is forgetting you are sleeping under it when you attempt to get up in the dark.
Tuesday I took a road trip to Yendi with the hope of meeting some others who are involved with church of Christ mission work in Northern Ghana. American missionary Steve Taylor operates a well-baby clinic called the Good News Child Development Center there, and a group from Searcy Arkansas, called the Rural Water Development Project, is involved with well drilling in the villages. Unfortunately the Taylors where back in the States and I could find no-one from Arkansas at the well drilling headquarters, so I left a message and will try to greet them the next time I am in the area. There is also a Mission Clinic at the site that is run by Ghanaians that offers basic medical services.
Once I return to the US I will have three weeks before classes begin again. I will be traveling to Arkansas to give a report to the Greenbrier church of Christ on Sunday morning, July 24th and at the Colony church of Christ on Wednesday the 27th. Then I will be in Mesa Arizona on July 31st to give a presentation at the Mesa church of Christ. If there are any other congregations that would like to hear more about the work in Ghana please send me an e-mail and I will make arrangements to visit. I am looking forward to getting to visit with many of you who have made it possible for me to be here. Thanks again to all of you who have made this work possible through your support. God bless you for all you do!