Friday, October 29, 2010

Sharing My Trip & Sharing My Support Letter

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your friendship and encouragement. I’m excited to share with you an interesting opportunity that I’ll be taking to spread the Word of God in Africa. On November 5th, I’ll be travelling to Tanzania with a architecture/engineering ministry group to design the campus of a Christian seminary! I welcome you to pray about taking part in this project through support of any kind. My goal is to travel through the prayer support of those who choose to intercede, the financial support of those who have been given means, and the personal support of those interested in updates and dialogue. I’ll go and do the volunteering of time and skills and keep you involved if you’d like along the way. You can check out the features on my website for brief info, links to updates, blog, pictures coming soon, donate online, and best of all there are videos showing the folks to whom this project is ministering.

The call to join with our brothers and sisters internationally is a familiar tug on my heart. I had the blessing 8-10yrs ago of travelling to India and Guatemala with Engineering Ministries International (eMi) to donate my architecture skills to local ministries, orphanages, and Christian schools. Since taking those trips, Villa Nueva, an orphanage in Guatemala City and another in Guntur, India have constructed the new buildings we designed to serve their mission, and Collegio de la Fe has remodeled their entire campus to meet the needs of education and Christian teaching for the youth in Huehuetenango. At this time, many factors have aligned to confirm my decision to volunteer with this ministry again. I’d love to share all the neat ways God has worked to bring me to this trip I’ll be taking in exactly one week!

I’ll be gone for 10 days in Tanzania, designing and coordinating with the other architects and engineers, the ministry, and local contractors in what we as architects call a “charette” – an intensive collaboration dedicated to design and production.

The master plan and building designs we create will serve to support International Christian Ministries (ICM) in their goal to, “Train church leaders to serve their own people by providing solutions to local needs.” Tanzania is an extremely poor country, lagging behind their neighbors; Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda in terms of development (according to the UN report ’06). In addition, the church has recognized that it is struggling spiritually as well due to the lack of theological training of its leaders. ICM’s desire is to become even more of a catalyst for spiritual transformation, through Bible teaching and training. We have an opportunity to address both the physical and spiritual needs of this nation through supporting the design of this campus in Tanzania.

The seminary has just recently acquired 5 acres of property just north of Dar es Salaam. They are eager to begin construction at this location, and I am blessed to be part of the eMi team that will provide the design. Upon our departure, we will be handing off the building and campus plans and construction will begin immediately. The vision begins its realization in approximately one month!

I look forward to hearing from you. As you may know, it takes a lot to get to Africa! I welcome your reply with whatever support God has enabled you for – prayer, financial and/or updates. I’m happy to have you as part of the team encouraging the “making of disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19).


Becky Bell

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Long Relationships

I began my Building Africa blog early this week. Since then I have been building post after post in my head to communicate the bits and pieces of what God is doing in my life and that of others in relation to this project. I desire to give my readers a somewhat sensible order of thoughts, therefore I will take my time bringing you thoughts as my days working on this project in Africa approach, and even then will continue during if possible, and after. Tonight however, I have desire to share with you one of the affects of the process of support raising.

As I seek to share God's mission for this project trip with those I know and love, I've been scanning through my emails and contact lists to find those whom I believe may have interest in hearing about the project and cause.

My contact folder is jammed with out-of-date contact groups (like "Caffiene; SoNo group," etc.) And friends I've met along my journey through Southern California from the beach, climbing, church, or my roomie's aerospace friends. Or friends from my journey to Connecticut, from Evensong, Redeemer, GBC, yoga teachers, volleyball, or ALPHA class. These are just two of the intricate stops in a long line of adventures that fill my contacts folder with names as far back as my internship in 2001. These are, "Events that shape my life" one might say to sum it up. But I know that really it is the people that have shaped my life, and these people have given life to these activities and stops along the way.

So this is a moment of honesty here: I am amazed to discover how many people I have completely lost touch with. In today's age of technology, and even with my (in)famous random calling to old friends every once in a blue moon, so many fascinating friends and people precious to me have been out of touch for a lengthy amount of time.

The sheer numbers of contacts I've made over my adventures spanning the city, country, and globe are starting to catch up to me as I can't keep up with all these wonderful people. The reality of that is saddening to me, a people-person. But there is another half to the cup our sayings describe. The joy of this is found in an opportunity to do something profitable for God's kingdom and human need. An opportunity to connect my network of friends and contacts with things being done around world, and equipped to do them through their support. The reality of this perspective is beautiful and has God's fingerprints all over it.

That being said, I'm going to head back to my hotmail account and drag over more emails from people I love to my email... expect your first "CONNECTION" email soon!

"Friends, I will say, 'Peace be within you.'" ~Psalm 122:8b

Sunday, October 17, 2010

O' Sifuni Mungu is a beautiful african song (swahili)

One ofthe languages of Tanzania is Swahili. The others are English and a vast number of tribal languages.