My last blog post was ten weeks and 5350 miles ago and so I guess an update it is in order. The Mission Trainees’ time at BMS International Mission Centre (IMC) came to an end in May with a personal gathering for our commissioning service. At this time we had the pleasure of hosting Pastor Moises Quembo, General Secretary of the Baptist Convention of Mozambique, who attended the service and prayed for us. His visit was a valuable opportunity to ask questions and to establish a good relationship before the move to Mozambique, where the BMS team is working in close partnership with Pastor Moises and the Baptist church.
A sojourn to the Baptist Assembly at Blackpool followed. Here we received our second commissioning before the 1,500 gathered Baptists and each of us gave a short introductory speech. As the Baptist Assembly drew to a close, I reluctantly parted company with many of those I had been training with over the last eight months. Already I look back on my time at IMC with some nostalgia and can bring to mind many fond memories of my IMC friends.
While at IMC, those of us moving to Mozambique had tussled with learning some rudimentary Portuguese. ‘Eu sou avocado’ I thought I heard my colleague say in response to our language tutor’s query about her profession. I had turned to her mystified ‘You are an avocado!’. She smiled patiently, ‘Eu sou advogada – I am a lawyer, an advocate’. Like my friend the avocado I was a little green when it came to grappling with the sounds and pronunciation of Portuguese. In response I took a week out to stay with a language teacher, which proved to be a much needed tonic for my chronic case of phonics. I am now armed with a valuable set of rules for Portuguese articulation.
Finally I returned to East Sussex to spend time with friends and family. It was great to catch up with good people and spend time with those I love. Thank you to all those who made time to say goodbye and please accept my apologies all those who I was not able to meet with. During this time I was also commissioned for a third and fourth time in the two morning services at my home church of Victoria Baptist in Eastbourne. Thank you to everyone at Victoria Baptist and a special thanks to IMC tutor Phil Grasham for coming all the way from Birmingham to speak at both services.
The much awaited day came on 4th June and those of us going to Mozambique gathered at Heathrow airport…but that is enough for now. I will write again soon regarding my initial experiences in Mozambique.