Pastor Frank Malizzo is in Awassa, Ethiopia for a 10 day mission trip with Training Leaders International. Keep checking back for updates on his trip and to see how God is using Pastor Malizzo to minister to local pastors in Ethiopia.
There is dust everywhere.
It billows up from the tires and feet and hooves of all that move on the road. It hangs in clouds after the heavy trucks pass, and falls like fine mist on the bushes that line the way. I taste it in my mouth. I feel it in my eyes. The dust passes freely into our small bus, as it drives along with windows open, and packed with weary travelers that bounce around like rag dolls.
My entrance to Awassa is different this time. This is my first trip since the new ‘airport’ has been finished. We de-plane on the open pavement, and find no other aircraft in sight. A man in a bright vest, waving from the end of the blacktop, beckons to us, and motions for us to make our way up a dirt path, and between the only two squat buildings on site. We never go inside. We never see another passenger. All of the security points and ticket counters and identity checks are but a faint memory at this point. It seems that we make up the entirety of the traffic here this afternoon.
After collecting our bags and boarding the bus, we begin our crawl along the dusty trail that leads around the lake, and back toward the city. There is a humble beauty in the landscape here, and in the people.
Thatched, round huts dot the roadside. Women in full dress seem out of place, against simple block houses with empty doors. Barefoot or sandal-clad children run nearby. Surely their lives are not easy, yet they seem always to be playing.
Eventually, the dust begins to mingle with the familiar smells of diesel and ash, and I would know without even looking that we are now nearing the city.
Tonight we will rest lying down, and that will be a welcome respite. Tomorrow we will worship with our Ethiopian brothers and sisters. The week’s work lies ahead of us, but for now, we must rest, and then sing. I am tired.
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MCC Elders and Connectors are hosting a Starting Point Lunch on January 13th after 2nd service. The luncheon is a great way to learn more about MCC, ask questions and meet new people! We encourage anyone who is considering making MCC their church home to attend and get connected! Contact Elizabeth to RSVP today.
For any ladies interested in prophetic literature or wanting to begin a Bible Study in the New Year, MCC is starting a new Bible Study in January! What is the heart behind the roar of the Lion from Zion? In this 16-week study through the book of Amos, beginning January 7th and meeting Monday mornings at 10 a.m., you will learn about a loving God who prepares His people to live forever. We hope you will consider joining us for this fantastic study! Child care is provided. Please contact Elizabeth Allan to learn more.
If you have ever felt like you don't fit in, that you aren't good enough, that everyone else has it together while you struggle to even show up, then we invite you to join us. We want you to learn that we have a God who lifts the pain of worthlessness and rejection! Starting Thursday, January 17th, Sara Ghormley and Elizabeth Allan will lead discussions as we prayerfully work through Ed Welch's book, "Shame Interrupted". We begin at 6:30 and end at 8, and will meet for 16 weeks. Cost is $16 per person, but scholarships are available. Please contact Elizabeth and let her know so she can order a book for you.
Would you like to learn how to respond to conflict Biblically? Pastor Frank Malizzo, Elizabeth Allan and Spencer Brown are hosting a Peacemaking as Evangelism Workshop at MCC on January 25th-26th. The class will highlight Biblical tools that can be used for work, in the community, in the home and as a tool for evangelism. “Conflict presents unique opportunities to serve other people, we can demonstrate the love of Christ and give witness to the gospel even to people who are attacking us.” Ken Sande. Contact Elizabeth to learn more.