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Sunday, July 14, 2013

Refugees enter Bundibugyo

The ADF, the rebel group that chased us out of our home in 1997, is back in action in our old neighborhood, supposedly with new support from Khartoum and links to Al-Shabbab and Al-Qaeda.  Thursday they attacked a town in Congo across our Bundibugyo border.  In response, the Ugandan army has moved to protect the border in force.  And the Congolese population has moved over to the safer Ugandan side.

It is odd to see the same lines of refugees with kids and pots and mattresses and chickens that we walked in 16 years and one month ago, moving in the opposite direction.  Only this time the road, newly widened and graded, is a lot nicer.  Our team in Bundibugyo is safe on the Uganda side.  But they are overwhelmed with work to assist the district in hosting tens of thousands of refugees.  In a place with minimal infrastructure, when ten or thirty or fifty thousand people arrive, water and sanitation, health and food, shelter and safety, have to be constructed out of nothing but space and grass and air.  Josh our engineer spent 15 hours today setting up a camp on WHM/district land along the airstrip where he could pipe in water from our mission's water project.  The same project Michael Masso finished only a few months before the first ADF crisis.

Please pray that the people would be spared the disasters of measles and cholera.  That the Congolese forces would restore order that would allow their people to return home.  That the Ugandan officials would act with wisdom and charity in caring for their cousins.  That our team would have stamina, safety, creativity, and even joy in serving as the hands of Jesus for the neediest.  

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