Day 10 Thursday 2nd August
Today was our final day at Grace Christian School, and it was an emotional one for all of us!
We all had an early breakfast this morning so as to have time to stick all the labels in the Bibles that arrived today (we have 50 Zulu Bibles and 50 English Bibles). This was a fulfilling and emotional task for all of us as we thought of what a wonderful gift these Bibles will be to the congregation of Hope Gospel Church. We hope to be able to give these out in the 11.00 am service this Sunday.
The A Team started the day by having a final play with the children in the Infant School which we all hugely enjoyed. We brought the parachute and lots of balls, balloons and books with us and after playing for about half an hour we presented them all to the children at the school. They sang a few beautiful songs for us and the headteacher was so pleased with the gifts, especially the books.
We then joined the B Team at Grace School for a South African Celebration Ceremony that Murriel (affectionately known as Grannie) had prepared for us. It included traditional dancing, singing and playing the drum in the African sunshine. Lots of pupils (or learners as Muriel calls them) and teachers (educators) gave speeches thanking us and asking God to bless us. Murriel was even moved to tears as she thanked us all for everything we have done here. It was a very emotional occasion, and a beautiful celebration of the South African culture.
Murriel then invited us to an African lunch prepared for us by the school which was really lovely and a very touching gesture. The lunch included barbequed chicken, beef and sausages, pap, thick gravy with vegetables in it, salad, vegetables and fruit juice. Although I’m not the best person to ask, apparently the meat was lovely, and the gravy certainly was incredible.
It was the last 'after school club' for the A Team, Jocey, Rob and Rose today as well, to add to all the emotion! It was led by Daniel and Abby who did a great job and really brought the theme of ‘Sticking to Jesus’ Team’ to life. After a fun packed two hours of games, creative prayers, chatting and Andrew being hit in the face with two plates of shaving foam (custard pies), all the children left with a goodie bag containing sweets, pencils, balloons, flags and colouring books which were loved by everyone.
Andrew then called another meeting for the A Team but surprised us all by giving us chocolate instead of actually having a meeting.
While the A team were busy with the 'after school club' - Helen, Suzy and Eva held their final craft session with ladies from the college and from the school. They have made a beautiful banner which will be presented to the college and will hang in the classroom which we are using as our base at the College. The ladies are overwhelmed by all the resources we have been able to give them. They have also been moved to tears because we have been able to share our love of sewing and card making. They are planning to meet every Wednesday from now on, to continue to make things for others and to pray together - the group will be known as the Dorcas Group (see Acts 9). Helen, Eva and Suzy were very touched by their response. Each of the ladies involved was presented with a certificate to recognise their participation, which caused great excitement.
Dinner was sandwiches (as we had had such a big meal at the school earlier) and we had a very relaxed devotions led by Andrew which included a very powerful time of open prayer.
Today was pretty special and unique, so many smiles and a few tears, but a really beautiful day. Oh and Tim got stopped by the police again... it's a long story which he'll be happy to share when you see him... maybe it's because he looks so young that he gets stopped???
Tomorrow we'll get a chance to be tourists - for the first time since we arrived - we are heading for Pretoria for the day!