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April News

Posted on April 11th, 2012.

A few days ago, March 27, at Dallas-Ft. Worth Airport, I said goodbye to Joel and William Geter Jr., our Project Manager. I knew they were excited as I watched them enter the security line to board KLM Flight # 6409 heading to Tanzania. They were prepared to meet the architect and contractor in Arusha to review the progress of the dorm construction. The only thing they did not have was all the money needed to pay the contractor for the next draw.

Upon arrival in Arusha, Joel sent several photos showing the progress of the new dormitory. A surreal feeling came over me.  Suddenly, a scene filtered across my mind of the “goodbye”. Following are a few thoughts about that morning in December 1961.

It was Christmas time in 1961 and we found ourselves making an ‘unplanned’ trip to the U.S.  Lorne Brown M.D., a Southern Baptist missionary friend was one of the doctors that advised dad to return to the U. S. for further tests resulting from a diagnosed heart condition.

The happiest and most rewarding years for our family were the years we lived in Arusha when I was a teenager. Although unspoken, we knew Tanzania was dad’s ‘Bagamoyo’, a Swahili word meaning, “Here I lay down my heart”.

The early morning dew was heavy as we loaded our baggage into the Land Rover. We were headed to Nairobi to catch our flight to the U.S.  If we had known that we would not be allowed to return “home” as we drove out of our driveway that early morning, I don’t think we would have been able to bear the pain of the goodbye.

The road to Nairobi passes the college. Suddenly, as we rounded a curve to pass the college, we saw the road completely blocked with students.  The driver slowed the car and I watched dad put his head in his hands. A huge lump filled my throat as I saw his cheeks wet with tears. The students surrounded our vehicle and laid their hands on our car. Their message was clear.  They were hoping to stop us so that we would not leave them. They fervently prayed as we slowly drove past and then, suddenly they began singing the old song “We’ll work till Jesus comes, we’ll work till Jesus comes.  We’ll work till Jesus comes and then be gathered home.” I was 17 years old. The scene of these young men waving until we could no longer see them or hear them singing, “We’ll work till Jesus comes,” has never left my memory.”

We told you in March that we did not have all the funds for the $25,000 ‘construction draw’ due to the contractor. Daily we reminded God of the promise He gave to us February 13:

“……He will not fail you nor forsake you until all the work for the service of the House of the Lord is finished.”   I Chronicles 28:20 TLB

Even while Joel and William were traveling, God again performed a miracle. Thursday, March 29, I called Joel to tell him that the funds had continued coming in and miraculously we had enough for the draw! I wired the funds to our Tanzanian Moons Bank account to pay the draw and Joel presented the monies due in full to the contractor!

We say “Thank You” to those of you that prayed for this miracle. To those who sacrificially gave we say “Thank You”.

It cannot be stated enough that your partnership is critical to the continuation of the vision. We count on your daily prayers and financial support to fulfill His will. Your gift large or small causes miracles to take place. In a few weeks we have another draw amount due for the next phase of construction. We know that you will continue to stand with us and trust God for the necessary funds.

William Geter, Jr., Project Manager, reports that construction is ahead of schedule and that with no delays, we will complete dormitory construction for God’s Glory by mid 2012.

Thank you for joining us on this journey. Together we “press on towards the mark for the prize of the high calling….”

Tanzania for Jesus!

Sally Bruton Vann

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