For the first two weeks of our visit I was teaching at Ameva Bible School. I left John and Celia’s house at 7.30 a.m. picking up students on the way in John’s large pick-up truck. Teaching began at 8.00 a.m. and I had two hours in the morning and one or two hours in the afternoon getting home about 4.00 p.m. Church History is not an easy subject to teach especially as most of it concerns the Western church although the North Africa Churches were very influential before they were destroyed by the Islamic armies. It is the one subject that is not Bible based and so requires more work. I had however prepared a booklet about early Christian missionary work in Africa which also included information about the coming of the gospel to the Shona people in Zimbabwe.
I am sure those of you that have “Fellowship” connections will be know how the farm has been run down and John’s house burned down. It is a sorry sight alongside houses now empty that were in full occupation when I was here about 20 years ago. It was strange to look around Martin and Marian William’s house, remembering each room and where I had stayed. Devoid of human life and activity they are strangely empty. I remember Marian treating a young boy from the school who had machete wounds on his legs and I also remember seeing a child from the Infants school drinking water from a plastic container which was not fit for drinking. Some of the children walked many miles getting up as early as 4.00 a.m. Both Infant and Junior Schools continue to function well at Ameva.
There is a beef herd and there are also a few dairy cattle but nothing like the former herds. All
that is left of the chicken sheds is a broken timber frame. The fields have reverted to bush and
the only fields I saw cultivated was one of sunflowers (the seeds are used for cooking oil) and
one of brightly coloured flowers (the seeds will be sold to gardeners). John is positive that there will be a future in the will of God for Ameva Farm. The Lord has kept the farm up to the present time but there are continuing challenges regarding its ownership. Please continue to pray for the farm and for John and Celia for continued strength and protection.
The Graduation Ceremony was the conclusion of two years of study, meeting periodically for
two weeks at a time. Students come from different church affiliations. Some are from Fellowship churches and some from the Christian Marching Church which is a break away from the Salvation Army. The Bishop of the CMC denomination was present. It was moving to see the joy shared by the students and their friends with lots of hugs and dancing. To graduate from Bible School is an unbelievable achievement. I preached during the Conference, at the Graduation and each Sunday I was there. Driving up to the “Scout Hut” in Chegutu reminded me of when I was here twenty years ago; then it was a Student gathering now it is a church meeting. The Lord led me to preach on the Ten Virgins and the Second Coming with a strong sense of urgency.
I have spent time helping the staff with issues related to the Bible School and spent over four
hours trying to make sense of the Library. Some of my subject headings are still there from my
last visit! Of course unpacking and sorting books is a delight to me. It has been a joy to enjoy
John and Celia’s friendship and home. They have been so kind to us. Barbara has been able to relax and spend lots of time reading, although today she had a meeting with some of the local Christian ladies sharing with them about the Lord and her experience of walking with the Lord.
The last week of our stay we left very early for a few days stay at Victoria Falls which is a long
journey from here. It was David Livingstone who was the first white man to see the most
spectacular waterfall in the world. His monument stands overlooking “the Falls”.