Spring is now officially 2 weeks old and over the weekend it has felt like winter is finally over. Whilst this is great in terms of wearing T shirts and shorts it also means that there is no more rain due until March next year. This is really serious in the Western Cape now and water restrictions will be in place from the 1st October. We don't know what form those restrictions will take yet but water bills will definitely increase by at least 20%.
Dean visited Patrick last night and enjoyed a brief chat, he is doing well and was sat in the chair next to his bed which is really positive. Dean will be taking Chris Nissen folk again this week to see Patrick and he is really looking forward to seeing his family again. Continue to pray for swift healing and strength of spirit as he recovers.
This week sees us celebrating our 13th wedding anniversary on Tuesday, we've booked a table in a local restaurant and have a babysitter organised, the joy of this babysitter is that she drives so Dean doesn't have to run her home (this is a real pain after cell on a Wed!). We're looking forward to an evening out away from Joel, these evenings seem to have been in short supply since being here.
Dean is beginning to strategise in relation to CNP and is looking at how he can start to meet some specific needs but also how he can draw others into helping the community. This is not a simple process and is hampered by the divisions between the community leaders. please pray for unity within the community and amongst the leaders. Many plans and initiatives have already failed because of the divisions between the leaders in Chris Nissen Park.
Paula continues to ensure Joel is well cared for and developing well. She has quite a good group of friends around her but doesn't yet feel really close to anyone, this is a source of frustration for her. There are one or two ladies whom Paula feels she could be really good friends and is praying that this will work out. Please pray for Paula as she copes with life as full time mum, she regularly meets people who devalue that role as well as meeting people who really value it, but it is always the negative comments that stick. As a family we feel that Paula has been given an awesome role and it is a privilege to be able to invest so heavily in Joel's development in a way which would not be possible for us in the UK as we'd both have to work. We do thank God for Joel and our role as his parents, but pray also for Paula to be strong in her role and to be a witness to the benefits of her role, especially to those who do not value motherhood.
LATEST: Dean has just returned this evening from CNP. He was informed that the old man -Peps- whom Dean took to hospital on Thursday died last night. The official cause of death was TB but sadly it was an AIDS related illness. Please pray for the community as there is a lot of anger towards the ambulance service and the police over this.
Lots of love
Dean, Paula & Joel