Monday, December 28, 2009

The Loss of a Friend

It's with much sadness of our hearts that we share the loss of another friend from Bethesda International, in Jinja Uganda. On Christmas Day 2009 Rebecca Kimbugwe, home foster mother of 30 children and young people at Guardian Home, passed away in a Kampala Hospital. It was quite painful to hear the news since we just saw her in early November on our last visit to Jinja and we spoke about seeing her again on our next visit. It has been a tremendous shock and heart ache to everyone since her death happened so suddenly and unexpectedly.

We met Rebecca in 2003 when we first met Ruth Mirembe who founded Bethesda International. Ruth and Rebecca were both foster mothers to the first children of Bethesda when it first began. Rebecca has spent most of the years of her adult life caring for the orphans and vulnerable children of Uganda by working with Bethesda International. She was an amazing woman full of energy and passion for life! The kids and I just visited Bethesda Int'l. in early November and were able to see Rebecca for a short visit where she shared her excitement of their home church where her and her husband were pastoring. She was a woman who was full of faith and wanted to share her love for God with everyone she met! I will so miss our conversations about life and family, and about our dreams and ideas for new projects. I will miss hearing her call my name, "Kate". She was one of my only Ugandan friends who called me Kate, not Katie and it always brought joy to my heart to hear her friendly greeting. We will miss her dearly!!
Please be praying for her husband and her family and especially the many children that have now lost their mother! Although many of her children are sponsored by a German NGO, Bulungi e.V. ( ) there are kids that are in Guardian Home that are not sponsored. If you would like to help this family financially during this hard time please contact me, the above address, or
November, 2009

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Uganda-through the lens

Peeking through the church windows. We were warmly greeted by some kids at our friends church one weekend. The Lugbarra word for "foreigner or white person" is Mundu (pronounced moon dew), as opposed to the typical Swahili word Mzungu, which is heard in other parts of Uganda, Kenya, Rwanda, and DRC.
This is the famous "Osuubi" a popular Ugandan greens dish. This of course, is the reason why our son is one of the most greeted little boys around town, we're guessing. Everywhere we walk people call his name and send him a smile, a wave and a friendly handshake! He sure feels loved!! "Osuubi"....."Osobie"... cute!!
Even though Jeff is the culinary whiz in our family, on this night I rocked it! This is our new favorite dish and we've decided to make it our Friday night family meal. Mexican Lasagna with layers of chapati, rice, beans, salsa, corn, guacamole, grn peppers, tomatoes and topped with cheese!! (No, that is not cheddar cheese....but at least we can get Gouda at least). We love having an oven this year. It's opening up all kinds of culinary possibilities. Thank you Billy and Joanna for such a lovely home!!. Crafting at Thanksgiving! Thanks Aunt Lois for the sand art pilgrim people. We had a fun time making them on Thanksgiving!
Me and a grandma's feet. It's moments like this afternoon that I wished I spoke more Lugbarra. There's a love deep in my heart for the elderly. I know this is because my grandmother helped raise my siblings and I while my mom worked full time. I miss my grandma, who will be 98 yrs this coming January!!
This is our wonderful friend Alice! Last year she helped our family live our life in Arua by working at our house. She has taught me how to shop in the market, cook, understand Lugbarra culture, and a million other things. We are so grateful for Alice in our lives! As soon as we arrived in Arua, Alice was eager to have us over to her place for lunch one Sunday afternoon. We had a wonderful meal with her and her family and toured around her community.

O and F playing with Alice's kids and neighbors

The ladies preparing our food at Alice's. This stove of Alice's was built efficiently to minimize the use of charcoal.

Alice's cassava crops. This is the one crop that survived during the drought season for many people including Alice and our friends Sam and Anna. Katie and our friend Anna that we've been working with and praying for as a family and a church. She has had to deal with some hard circumstances in her life but she is strong and continues to trust God with her life and her children's lives.

This is our friend Jocelyn, Sam's wife, and the sweet and adorable baby Katie!! She has grown so much since we left in April of last year. After just one visit she had already warmed up to me and let her Auntie Katie hold her!! Even Uncle Jeff got the chance to play a bit with baby Katie before she fussed for her mama.

Beautiful ceramic pots on the roadside in Kampala

Carrying a load across town in Kampala.

Sunday, December 6, 2009


It's the final day of our Five for Five campaign for World AIDS Day -
a chance to give $5 a day for 5 days - each day funding a different project serving orphans living with HIV .
You can make Hope today for orphans living with HIV in Ukraine! Go to to learn more about the project and where to give to make a difference in the lives of children!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

World AIDS Week--- pray, act, give, share hope!

It's day 4 of the Five for Five campaign for World AIDS Day - a chance to give $5 a day for 5 days - each day funding a different project serving orphans living with HIV!
Make Hope today for HIV+ orphans in South Africa! Go to to find out how

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

World AIDS Week- pray & act

It is Day 2 of the Five for Five campaign for World AIDS Day - a chance to give $5 a day for 5 days - each day funding a different project serving orphans living with HIV!
Make Hope today for orphans living with HIV at
"AHOPE for Children" Ethiopia!
Go to to find out how!!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

WORLD AIDS DAY- a chance to make a difference!

World AIDS Day!
Make Hope for orphans living with HIV in Thailand!
Visit to find out how!
It's the start of the Five for Five campaign - a chance to give $5 a day for 5 days - each day funding a different project serving orphans living with HIV! Tomorrow will be a new project so make sure to check back at for another chance to give and make a difference in a child's life!!

To donate $5 to today's project now, visit or go directly to