The Presentation in the Pounding Rain

A Letter from Kay Day, serving in Rwanda

October 2019

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Dear Friends and Family,

Greetings from rainy Rwanda. September activities are different from the normal schedule, because of the schedule and because of the rains. The Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences (PIASS) is on a break from classes, with our theology students doing internships in their home parishes, but that is not to say that we are not busy. This is a month for visitors and conferences. We have hosted delegations from Japan and Germany and conferences on theology and ethics, on peace building, on history and on interreligious relations. This is also the beginning of the rainy season that provides anything from a light sprinkle of rain to several hours of soaking downpours each day.

In mid-September we had a delegation of 26 German students and lecturers from Bochum University come for a series of lectures at PIASS and a conference at Lake Kivu. Some of our students were invited to return to participate. We welcomed our guests, gave them a tour of the campus and escorted them to lunch at the student restaurant across from the main campus, after which we were to return to the main campus for a public lecture by one of the visiting professors at 3 p.m. But as frequently happens on African time, we were behind schedule and lunch did not begin until 2 p.m. As we were finishing lunch and encouraging folks to make their way for the lecture, the skies darkened and there was a loud clap of thunder. Several of us rushed to the lecture room before the storm broke, but most lingered to finish the last of the meal. Just as I reached the main building, the heavens opened, and the rains poured. Most of the delegation did not have umbrellas. Rwandans would just wait for the rain to stop and then move to the lecture. But our guests were not accustomed to this practice, so we sent the bus on which the guests had come to the student area to gather the guests and ride them the 200 yards in the pouring rain. All this took time. When the lecture began at 4 p.m., the speaker, Dr Wolfgang Huber, a renowned German theologian, had to raise his voice above the pounding rain on the roof, but everyone was satisfied. The lecture, Ethics in an Emergency: The case of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, was a great success. By the time all questions were answered, the rain had stopped, and we could continue with the program of the evening. Such is life in September at PIASS.

My hope for you is that your September has been as enjoyable and that you are anticipating God’s blessings in October. Please pray for our students as they return to classes this month and for the recruitment of the new students who will join us. They are the future of PIASS and the church.

Yours in love,

Kay (Cathie to the family)

Please read this important message from Sara Lisherness, interim director of Presbyterian World Mission

Dear friend of Presbyterian Mission,

Greetings in Christ! As the interim director of Presbyterian World Mission, I am grateful to have the opportunity to thank you for your continued support of PC(USA) mission co-workers.

The enclosed newsletter bears witness to some of the many ways in which God is at work in the world through long-standing relationships between global partners and the PC(USA). These partnerships are nurtured and strengthened by the presence of mission co-workers in over 40 countries; you are an important part of this partnership too, as you learn about and share how our church is involved in global ministry; as you pray for our partners and mission co-workers; and as you take action to work with others for God’s justice, peace and healing.

I write to invite you to continue joining us in partnership in three ways. First, your prayers are always needed. Please pray that God will continue guiding the shared work of the PC(USA) and global partners as we engage together in service around the world. Pray, too, for mission co-workers, that they may feel encouraged in the work they are doing under the leadership of global partners.

Second, please consider making a year-end gift for the sending and support of at least one mission co-worker. There is a remittance form at the end of this letter and an enclosed envelope so that you can send in a special year-end gift.

Finally, I encourage you to ask your session to include one or more mission co-workers in your congregation’s mission budget for 2020 and beyond. PC(USA) mission co-workers’ sending and support costs are funded by the designated gifts of individuals and congregations like yours; your gifts allow Presbyterian World Mission to fulfill global partners’ requests for mission personnel.

Faithfully in Christ,

Sara Pottschmidt Lisherness
Director, Compassion, Peace and Justice Ministry
Interim Director, Presbyterian World Mission


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