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Life in North America gets hectic with meetings, appointments, family, friends, commitments, cleaning, cooking, household repairs, snow shoveling, and laundry. Life for us in Cameroon gets busy in the same ways – except for the snow shoveling. In our part of the world, we are in dry season, so a skiff of snow has been replaced by the covering of fine dust and harmattan skies. The harmattan dust that blows from the Sahara is everywhere! Its orange color makes for beautiful sunsets, but it masks the sun during the day, and we have many dull days. But we are never cold! 🙂
A trade language of Cameroon is called Pidgin English. One Pidgin proverb states, “E di enta wata fo wash skin, e commot drai da so.” Literally this means he went into the water to bathe but he came out dry. The message in this proverb is he came to help but he didn’t get involved.
In our busy lives, there are many different things calling for our attention. There are many things we would like to help with, but we feel too stretched with the rest of our commitments that, despite our good intentions, we don’t get involved. Sometimes we end up not prioritizing things in a good or effective way.
As international missionaries, we face those same struggles. I (Maureen) am constantly reprioritizing to be sure I get involved in the right things and that I don’t just go through the motions so I’m like the man in the proverb who actually doesn’t do anything to help.
Meeting with people and developing relationships is very important in Cameroonian culture. These days, I have spent a lot of hours meeting and discussing with various CBC leaders. So while my to-do list remains long, I had to shift my priorities to make these meetings happen. It has been wonderful to spend time with some amazing leaders and hear their hearts. It has also allowed me to better understand how our brothers and sisters in the CBC want us to partner with them.
Craig is engaged with various finance responsibilities at Rain Forest International School (RFIS) and supporting the learning opportunities of his young assistant. He is also working on setting up a manual of all the tasks of his finance position to aid the next person in the position.
Here in Cameroon, a dog is more than just a pet. They are also great deterrents to crime. Knowing there is a dog about keeps many a thief away. We recently got a Cane Corso puppy to join the older dog we have here in our compound. We hoped that Caesar, our older dog, would be willing to show little Rocky the ropes. So far so good! Craig has been spending time in training sessions with Rocky, and we’ve been cooking a lot of dog food! Rocky eats so much, and he is growing so fast! He is cute and funny and certainly entertaining as he does things like climbing into his water dish or carrying Caesar’s water dish down the hill behind our house.
Maureen’s Grade 10 small group girls are putting together a spa day fundraiser for RFIS. These energetic girls, pictured here at our Christmas cookie decorating party, will be treating the women and girls in the area to manicures and pedicures, homemade facial masks, and snacks. They are excited about this event, and we are praying they will have a good turnout. Maureen enjoys meeting with the girls, and currently they are learning their way through Philippians together.
The conflict in the NW and SW continues. The world news coverage has shifted to other events, but the trauma and challenges for the people here have not changed. The CBC has two seminaries and many churches, schools, hospitals, and health centres in the conflict area. All of these institutions are facing huge challenges because of the conflict. Roads are often blocked, preventing access; personal safety is at risk, and difficulties in carrying out the activities of daily living is a constant challenge. The NAB and the CBC are working together to provide aid where we can to assist people who have been displaced, injured, or suffer the effects of personal trauma. You can help by donating to the Cameroon Crisis Relief Fund by clicking nabconference.org/give/cameroon-crisis-relief/ and scrolling down to give.
Thank you for partnering with us here in Cameroon.