We had the privilege of speaking to our son Steven this week after not hearing directly from him for two months. He has successfully completed Basic Military Training in the Air Force and is considered an Airman at Lackland Airforce Base in San Antonio, TX. He will transition tomorrow to his Pararescue "tech school" and begin with a 10-day orientation to the Indoctrination Course, which is an extensive 10 weeks of training in swimming, running, weight training, and calisthenics. Steven told us that in the last Indoctrination class, only 40 out of 150 Airmen made it through to the end without dropping out. Once this is completed, he will begin a "pipeline" of training that will last another 13 months, including airborne, diving and survival school, as well as a 22 week paramedic course and 24 week Pararescue Recovery Specialist Course.
We know Steven is right where God wants him, and we are so proud of the testimony he has already had with many of the other Airmen in his squadron. He has told us that his desire is to share Christ as he daily lives out his faith by demonstrating integrity, determination, and hard work. Please pray with us for Steven, that he will stay strong physically (free of injury), mentally, and spiritually, and that he will continue to find Godly guys to pray and read the Bible with. There is already a core group of Christians that he is meeting with, and we are thankful that Steven has this accountability group. We will continue to give you updates about his progress as he continues.
Another prayer request is for the country of Kenya, as the country-wide election is held tomorrow, March 4. We are very hopeful that peace will reign and that the country will witness free and fair elections. The national polls show the top two contenders are running extremely close, and even a run-off election might be necessary next month. Our close Kenyan friends and neighbors believe that peace will prevail in this election. As a missionary community, we are praying with them, that such peace will prevail. We covet your prayers over this entire election process here in Kenya. Please see the following link for pictures and a BBC article on the coming Kenyan election: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-21616945. Our local pastor at Bethesda Africa Gospel Church finished a series on politics and the Christian with a panel discussion involving several of our church members, one of whom is on the local electoral committee for Tenwek. Tomorrow is a holiday in Kenya as citizens go to the polls. We will keep you posted this week on the results of this election and to remind us all to pray that Kenyans will accept the results and move forward with future local and national leaders under a relatively new constitution adopted in late 2010.
Work in the hospital continues at its usually busy pace but we have decided not to do elective surgeries through the next three days as we await the election process to be completed. Mike has done many big and unusual cases in the last couple of weeks and is thankful for some good results with happy patients. It is a great delight working with our ten Kenyan surgical residents who work very long hours but with good attitudes and strong spirits.
We depend on God's grace daily and upon YOUR regular prayers for our ministry here at Tenwek Hospital. Be blessed this week!
Mike and Pam Chupp
Serving with World Gospel Mission at Tenwek Hospital in Kenya