Nigeria Report

It's a windy harmattan morning in the village of Unguwa Rogo. Before breakfast we go to greet the chief, but at his home we are informed that he has gone to the traditional mountain where the Achipowa people practice their religion.  We will return to the chief another day.  
Today has been declared a communal labor day for the people to begin molding blocks to construct their own Cicipu Language Development Office.  
We receive a message that the wooden block molds that were ordered have not been made, so we pray for God's provision.  At about 9:30 we walk 10 minutes to the construction site.  Already 4 young men are at work digging clay and throughout the rest of the day, more and more people arrive from an estimated 6 villages.   

People of all ages came to help... I was most impressed by this diligent little guy as he worked for a long time, even refusing to hand his hoe to others who wanted to give him a break. (you can also imagine John digging for just long enough to have some sweat equity and a blister in this project, sorry I can't find a picture.)  
One other young boy took the lead in gathering dry grass and was finally joined by some older boys.  

CAPRO donated a goat for the feeding of all the workers.

A young girl helping with indispensable water. 

A well was dug and finally the women started arriving with water to mix with the dry clay and grass.

Niger Tea was brewed to give a mid morning boost to those who wanted it.

Meanwhile, deliveries of millet were accepted and processed in the kitchen. A full lunch would be coming for all the workers! 

Not everyone came to work... some were spectators.

 Can we just pause for an eye opening moment?  This young man is the bartender with a bottle of locally distilled "hot" which a few young and old men partook of.  This really broke my heart to see these young strong men wasting their lives on such a pursuit.  

Here you can really see the extent of this work project.  This is the beginning of the Cicipu Bible translation project and the local people are motivated to contribute what they have to the development of their own language.  Let it not be said that the donors are all foreign... these are local investors in their own development.    

This is the part that I was just amazed at.  These men are the skilled block masons, working quickly and carefully to produce approximately 1300 blocks in one day. 

1300 blocks

Here's a little video evidence of our lunch break.

Thanks for your prayers for my Nigeria trip.  It was a true success in many ways.  And thanks for your prayers for the Cicipu Bible translation project. It is off to a good start (with Luke drafted and the office construction underway).  My hope is for us to be able to strengthen the project and build the capacity of the people toward full ownership of translating the scriptures into their own language.


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