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Houston, TX


Day Five - PH NG

Mark Junkans

Today we spent the day in Ohne. Sylvia led a women's bible study and workshop and was assisted by some local women for translation into their language. She did a great job, even though she was nervous. I spent time with the local pastors and listened to a lot of their joys and concerns. I found that they earn about 9,000 naira a month, which is about $84.
We are trying to work together to figure out some kind of money making projects that the church can run, where some members can be employed and the pastor's family can also earn some much needed income. I know that this will be a long-term goal, but something has to be done. Today's workshops are going to be about how to minister to the community, and how to begin small businesses. It's hopefully the start of a good discussion.
I am loving the life here in Nigeria. The social norms and un-written rules are mind-boggling to a newcomer, but it is fascinating. There is so much posturing for power and prestige among the leaders it's incredible. Everyone has a title, and the next one longer than the first. College degrees and titles are much more important here than in the states, at least in the local church. This is something that I obviously am not concerned about.
Sylvia got her hand slapped for wearing pants and no head covering in the church. Oops, we weren't told that she was expected to, and assumed that because it was a workshop that she wouldn't have to. Bad Americans! Tomorrow she has something more appropriate to wear, and I'm wearing my native Nigerian dress.