News from Zimbabwe:

Promotion to Glory: It is with sorrow that I learned of the passing of one of our faithful leaders in Harare, Bro. Sunny Nyahora. I am not sure of his age but it would be over 60 and going on 70. A zealous and faithful Christian who used his free time to help start two churches, one in Mhondoro and one in Budiriro.

Rockwood Bible Camp: Building work on the new Girl’s Dorm at Rockwood in Ruwa is going well. We have two bricklayers and their assistants working, but it is a large structure and will require more than 50,000 bricks to construct all the walls. The only wood in the building are the doors themselves. Door frames and window frames are all steel and the roof framing will be steel, so there is nothing for the termites to eat. Termites are a real problem in Zimbabwe. They have been known to climb up through the inside of improperly constructed brick walls and feast on roofing timbers.

We have several different species of termites. One species builds huge mounds or hills and we have any number of these termite hills at Ruwa. You might call it poetic justice but these termites hills provide excellent earth for making bricks. The soil is mixed with water into a good stiff mud consistency, slopped into moulds, then turned out of the moulds onto the ground and left to dry. They must be covered with straw to keep the sun from drying out too quickly. (see Exodus 5:7-18). When the bricks are dry they can then be built into a kiln and fired either with coal or firewood. The finished product is a good hard brick that is weather proof and termite proof! As reported in previous letters we have made our own bricks for all our buildings at Rockwood Bible Camp.

Church Growth : Earlier in February, the Hatfield church held a special weekend meeting, a joint-meeting for the Harare area churches. On Saturday there were 350 in attendance and on Sunday 750. They embarked on an ambitious building program about four years ago and are now meeting in their new large auditorium although it is not quite finished. (Hatfield is the name of this particular suburb of Harare) Other residential areas in Harare where we have a church are, Arcadia, Budiriro, GlenNorah, Epworth, Highfield, Kuwadzana, Mbare, Mufakose, Tafara, Waterfalls, Zengeza.

BIBLES: This February I sent $1,000 to Zimbabwe for the purchase of Bibles (The Denham Springs, LA church had recently contributed $550.) We are able to purchase these from the Bible Society in Harare. The Shona Bibles cost $15. And English are available for $12. If you add those two together it = $27. And $1,000 divided by 27 = 37 (37 Shona and 37 English) However they will purchase according to the demand. We sell the Bibles for $5 each and in a few cases give them away. The amount received back will go into the Bible fund to purchase more until the fund is exhausted.

Famine Again : Reports from Zimbabwe indicate that the rains failed in much of the country, Binga, Lusulu, WuyuWuyu and other areas where we have churches. In most of these places there has been total crop failure. These are areas where people must grow all their food, and when there is no rain they will starve without help.. We helped many in the Binga and Lusulu areas last year and this year conditions are even worse.

Travel Plans Changed: I had originally desired to travel to Zimbabwe the middle of March and stay six months. Unfortunately that is no longer possible. It is because of the accident I had the end of December when I tore the muscles inside my left leg. That has all healed but some blood clots developed in the calf. I am taking medication for that, (Warfarin, more commonly known as rat poison) and my doctor says it will take about six months for this condition to clear up. I need to be sure these are all gone before I can go to Zimbabwe. I would appreciate your prayers in this matter that I might know when, and whether or not, to go this year. Now I am not sick, I can walk very well, I am not in any pain, just frustrated! The Lord’s will be done.

May The Lord Richly Bless Each One!

-Robert & Joy Garrett live in Louisville, KY  and are  long-time  missionaries  in Zimbabwe