There really isn't. Not that I have extensive world-traveling knowledge. (Well okay, I guess I have been to five different countries, but England, France and Israel are hardly an equal comparison to Uganda.) I'm not the only one who thinks this either. My feelings that Uganda is a place with a unique way of getting into your heart and soul is a sentiment shared by a number of world-travelers I know. The people of Uganda have so little and yet are incredibly openhearted, especially for a country that has been through so much war and devastation. It is hard to put into words, but once you've been there, you understand.
I watched the video from my last trip in 2006 and was filled to the brim (meaning I cried a little) with joyful anticipation at returning. (You can watch the documentary I made about the trip here. I would recommend letting the video load completely before playing.)
Oh, in case you missed the announcement - Devin and I are traveling to Uganda in March to serve with some pretty incredible people. One of which is Katie Davis, who not only started Amazima Ministries, but also has fourteen adopted kids. Yes. Fourteen. Oh and by the way, Katie is in her mid-twenties and a single mama. I'll say it once more - fourteen adopted children. Needless to say, Devin and I are honored to have the privilege of working along side someone who exhibits the sacrificial love of Christ so fully. (read Katie's blog here)
Amazima (which means "truth" in the native language of Luganda) runs a number of programs including a feeding program that provides meals for some of the poorest families in Uganda (it only takes $0.15 to provides one meal). They also offer sponsorships for over 400 orphans and provide them with education, clothing, food, medical care and Biblical discipleship (sponsorships are only $300 for a whole year click here to learn more). A number of other projects are also run by Amazima but the one thing the all have in common is that they care for the needs of the "least of these" and spread some serious doses of Jesus-love while doing it. I am giddy with the thought of working in some of these programs.
While in Uganda, we will also be running a VBS-type program for some of the orphan homes in the area, including Canaan Children's Home which is led by Pastor Isaac Wagaba. Pastor Isaac has an incredible story of survival during the terrorist reign of Idi Amin (a.k.a. the "Butcher of Uganda"). As an outspoken Christian, Pastor Isaac was on Amin's "death list". After being shot and left for dead in a mass grave, Pastor Isaac heard a voice saying, "Isaac, I have saved your life so that you may save the lives of my fatherless children...Isaac, I will be the father of those children through you." This was the beginning of the vision for Canaan Children's Home.
I mean, wow. I can hardly believe that these are the kinds of people we get to serve with. Incredible.
More news to come in future posts!