Dear Supporters, Family, and Friends,
First, please accept our deepest apologies for not writing before now. We arrived in the US on April 30 and it has been a whirlwind ever since. But, that is no excuse for not at least dropping an email letting you know that we were able to get the tourist visas and travel. Most people found out through Facebook. We have decided that time goes by even quicker in the states than in Tanzania!
As most of you know we were made aware on Monday, before we were to leave the next Sunday, that the British visas for our Tanzanian children were denied. To make a long story short we scrambled to get the visas, which included a 14-15 hour drive from Dar es Salaam to Nairobi. We had to reapply for the visas in Nairobi. This was on Thursday. We received the visas on Friday at about 2 pm, drove back to Arusha, got ready to travel on Saturday, then, after services on Sunday, went back to Nairobi on a shuttle to fly out that evening. Yes, I know you got tired just reading that! Imagine how we felt having to actually do it. :) But, with God's providence and your prayers, it all worked out in the end. As my good friend John Rice says, "God likes to cut it close," so that we know that it is through his working that we are able to have what we have and do what we do.
We are still going to be working on the immigration / citizenship issues, so, we covet your prayers on that also.
Since arriving we have attended Todd's graduation from Faulkner, his marriage to Lauren Kelly, my graduation, and two weeks of Bible camp. We have also reported to several congregations, made new contacts, and had time with family.
We have been to the following congregations: Lay Lake (Columbiana, AL), Meridianville, AL, East Ridge (Chattanooga, TN), Athens, TN. East Side (Cleveland, TN), Calera, AL, Ironaton, AL, Parrish, AL, Cartersville, GA, Jacksonville, AL
The schedule for the next month or so is as follows:
June 23: Munford, AL - AM, Pikeville, TN - PM
June 30: Ooltewah, TN - AM
July 7: Spring Creek, TN - AM, Union Grove (Cleveland, TN) - PM
July 14: Huntingdon, TN -PM
July 21: Open
July 28: Cottondale, AL - AM, Oxford, AL - PM
We will be returning to Tanzania September 16th which is about 12 weeks away. We will be contacting the rest of our supporting congregations about reporting and looking for others to show our presentation to raise the funds we have lost.
We are thrilled that our daughter, Heather, who just turned 15, was baptized into Christ.
Thank you again for making our furlough possible! It has been a joy thus far and we have enjoyed seeing old friends and meeting new ones. We look forward to seeing all of you.
Jimmy Gee and family