The Clares in Ugands June 22

 

Good afternoon everyone!


It’s hot here in Arua, but from what we hear, those of you in the UK may be similarly stifled. We hope that you all enjoy the heat wave and perhaps you can share in our newfound love of shade and rain…?!
 
Since we last wrote, we have said farewell to my (Tom’s) parents, who stayed with us for a total of over 7 weeks, initially in Kampala and then here in Arua. It was such a joy to have them here, of course for all of the children, but also for us to give them a taste of our life here and to enjoy their giftings and company.

Alison (my Mum) was a huge help with homeschooling particularly, re-establishing art lessons which had somewhat fallen by the wayside and injecting energy and enthusiasm to support Verity in the huge challenge of educating 3 children whilst looking after another 2! Chris (my Dad) was able to continue some work of his own during school hours at the café next door to us here and was as ever a great source of fun for all the children when school finished. We even took the opportunity too to spend a couple of nights in Murchison Falls National Park together. Do thank God on our behalf for their time here and their support as we continue to live so far from their home in the UK.
It was an honour to be part of a Diocesan celebration for 8 members of the Diocese who've been blessed with babies recently, especially as Tom's parents could be a part of it too. (Eli took the photo with the pole unfortunately obstructing the Bishop's face!)
Change of Direction at Work

Because my parents were here for such a long period, I got straight back to work when we returned to Arua, heading back to the Health Office. Having finally appointed the Kuluva Hospital Board of Governors through the Synod meeting after a long battle, I then managed to sit down with the Diocesan Secretary and discuss some of the difficulties I’ve been having regarding my current role as Health Coordinator (ie doing very little clinical medicine or training!). Praise God, he agreed that I should be spending more time on that side of things and we will be handing most of the administration formally over to Esther, the wonderful assistant recruited in February to work in the Health Office.
 
Having agreed to make that change, however, we are now on the cusp of returning to the UK for a few weeks, for Verity’s sister’s wedding in early July. We are so thankful that Amara's travel document came through and we're excited to see all our family and some friends. We are also looking forward to returning here in mid-July to continue with God’s calling on our lives for the rest of our time here.
Having a bit of a chat the other day.
Baby Awaniya

Thank you for all your kind emails in response to the news of Amara’s birth. She’s a lovely little soul and has already brought so much joy into our lives. So many people in the local community have been asking after her since we returned and many are over-joyed that we finally have a girl! She’s been given the name ‘Awaniya’ in the local language, meaning ‘thank you’ and we continue to thank God for such a precious gift.

As we travel, we’re praying for good health and that we’d remain COVID-free – we know of a couple of cases in the ex-pat community recently and it’s generally on the rise here. The three older boys still have to have a negative PCR test to leave and re-enter Uganda so we’re praying we can all keep clear in the next few days.

Thank you for your continued support and prayers. We’re sorry we won’t be able to visit our link churches in this brief time back in the UK but we love to hear your news.

Blessings,

Tom, Verity, Ezra, Eli, Simeon, Joel and Amara


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