As for me, I know of nothing else but miracles. - Walt Whitman

Monday, July 27, 2015

Our Trip to Ethiopia, Day 5

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

After eating breakfast together as a team, we headed back to Kechene for the day.

A woodworking shop.

We painted 7 more rooms: 6 bedrooms and another dining room. Rats scurried around our feet several times while we worked, and the orphanage girls just laughed at us when we screamed and jumped out of the way. "It's ok," they tried to assure us. They're obviously used to the pests, which doesn't surprise me after seeing their living conditions.

 A rat hole.

We went to Lucy's Restaurant again for lunch. Afterward, we finished painting the bedrooms, and then the team ladies went to play with the orphanage girls while the guys worked to paint the dining room. Jessica, Kristi, Alyssa, and Shana got their hair braided, while I had girls lined up to give me a shoulder massage. The girls gave us all bracelets that they had made, and kept insisting that we sit on the chairs they brought us. They tried their best to make sure we felt welcomed and cared for. Two girls, Hannah and Mekdes, both age 11, attached to me right away and clung to me for the rest of the afternoon. "Will you be my mother?" they asked, and called me "mother" for the remainder of our time there. They each held one of my hands or put their arms around my waist and gave me a tour of the entire property, including the clinic (I'm so glad we brought lots of medical supplies as they had next to nothing), the kitchen, the gardens, the barn where 6 cows were housed for milk, the bathrooms, and some small cellar rooms that they use for dancing. They taught me a few of their dances and hand games. These 2 girls were so precious; I wish I had been able to take their photo.

Wass washing out more rollers while the rest of us spent time with the girls.

It began to rain, so all of the girls crowded onto the front porch of one of the buildings. Some of the girls took me inside to show me their beds and insisted that I sit down. Then they surrounded me so that I couldn't move. Eventually, though, too many people were crowding into the space that the men were trying to paint, so we all moved out on the front porch again. Once again, the Americans were given chairs, and everyone crowded around us until we were quite claustrophobic. :) How wonderful to spend time with the least of these and show them the love of Jesus! 

Some of the girls sang songs while I tried to converse with M, one of the girls who looked very street-wise. We taught each other some Amharic/English words, but it was slow-going. Finally she 
exclaimed, "Just give me your English, and I'll give you my Amharic!" She kept trying to play little tricks on me, but I caught her every time. ;) 

When the girls found out I was expecting a baby in November, they asked Wass to tell me that I had to bring the baby back to visit them. I certainly hope I can go back sometime. When it was time to leave, the girls clung to us and did not want us to go. 

We ate dinner at Makush, an Italian restaurant/art gallery. Shana did not feel well, and started throwing up. Some of the other teams staying at the guest house had passed around the stomach flu, and now I was worried that it was starting its turn with us. Chris and I picked out a painting, and they took it off the frame and rolled it for us so that we could get it home on the plane. There were so many gorgeous was so hard to choose!

Some of my favorites:

Here is the one we bought. It reminds me of Gambella.

Shana was sick again on the way home, and I started feeling questionable, too. When we got back to Ember, some of the other teams had left. So Chris, Shana, and I got another room to ourselves. I was glad, because I was ill all night long.


  1. I'm so glad you were there to help. We have friends that are missionaries in Sierre Leone and are going through a horrible time there. We call one of the older orphans our African son. I pray one day we will get to meet him in person.

    Hugs from Oklahoma,

    Cottage Making Mommy

  2. Hello, my husband and I are looking at going on a missions trip to Ethiopia with our 16 yr old son in June 2016. We would like to work with orphans. I was hoping you may have contact info, perhaps a email for the kechene orphanage to see if they can use our services. We are also licensed to adopt where we live but feel called to go to this area. Thank you in advance for any assistance you may be able to give.