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Newsletter to the Friends of Sakeji

April 2002

Dear Friends,

We are pleased to be able to write to you again and give you some news about Sakeji School. For a while many people have been concerned about its future, but we are glad to be able to enclose a letter from the recently inaugurated Board of Governors who will take over the running of the school in January 2003. We cannot express our thanks adequately to the Board of Advisors who have seen us through many problems during the past six years. We have valued their input and help, and pray that the Lord will reward them abundantly for all the time and effort they have put into Sakeji. Our prayers are also with the new Board of Governors who have a lot of work ahead of then.

In the letter sent out last year we mentioned the possibility of a new Christian school being started in the urban area of Zambia. It is still going ahead and we would value your prayers for that too.

By the River

The water slips through silently, it does not make a sound. It makes whirlpools. Then it starts to make sound like chime bars. When you feel it it is cold. Its dark shadows make it like a jungle. The water starts to make a shushing noise, some rocks stand bolt upright, some of them lie down, some round as a ball. The water starts to rush faster. Then it separates in two. The smaller one makes chime bar noises while the other rushes up, down, up, down. It finally meets and slows down. Birds dart from tree to tree, they shrill and screech. Dragon flies hover above the water. Fish dart from rock to rock. Some look as though they slither.

Benjamin Mutti Grade 6

This term we have all been very aware of the Lord's help in so many ways as some of the school responsibilities have been rearranged. His strength day by day has been a reality, and we have experienced the truth of Isaiah 41v10: "So do not fear, for l am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." The prayers of numerous friends around the world, have kept us relying on the Lord and seeing Him at work In many situations.

Sakeji River

Sakeji is a land of beauty
but more than anything I treasure the river.
It flows at a graceful speed, with shadowy trees along its banks.

It breaks out into diamonds of light.
With bubbles and waves it flows on steadily.
It breaks into two paths surrounding an island,
the bigger path flows on quickly to meet the small one.

The two paths joins after making another small island,
getting rougher as it goes it makes a waterfall
spraying foam. It carries on going faster.
It passes an old log that is trying to stop it.

Sakeji flows steadily
going on and on until it's out of bounds,
it flows quickly knowing it has a job
its job is to fill the Zambesi river.

Jedidah Katala (Grade 6)

The children soon I settled into school life and are enjoying the various activities. We're always amazed at how easily the little five and a half year olds settle down. Of course school is a novelty for them at first but inevitably there are a few tears especially at night. They usually soon disappear and their smiling faces are seen again. It is a joy to see their progress in class and when they begin to read and work out simple sums it is a real encouragement. As they progress up the school we are encouraged to see spiritual growth as well as academic progress. One child recently commented that all other theories and religions cannot be true because, "Everything must be based on the Scriptures". Our prayer is that they will "continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of." 2 Timothy 3v14 (The school motto). Past pupils continue to get in touch and often say how much Sakeji has meant to them in their spiritual journeys.

We held the termly Birthday Party at the same time as a Book Week, so the theme of the party was `Stories from Around the World.' The older children enjoyed acting out some up-dated versions of fairy stories for our entertainment. We organised a couple of competitions as part of Book Week; one was very challenging to find out all the countries of Europe and their flags. The dining room was decorated with entries for a poster competition. The children enjoyed finding out which countries their favourite stories came from.

Last year some Grade 6 pupils entered the Zambian national Grade 7 exam and passed with good results. They had all worked especially hard, including studying in the holidays. This reflects the high standard our pupils achieve as well as the hard work of the staff both in and out of the classroom.

This term we have benefited from the assistance of several short-termers. Tabea Schulz had three weeks to spare from her job as an air stewardess and was a great help with different tasks around school. Others have been able to spend the whole term here. We have enjoyed many delicious meals cooked by Mrs Towse while the Zambian workers have been well supervised by her husband. Mrs Loudon soon got the girls organised in the dorm and has been a help in class too. Mr and Mrs Towse have also helped with lessons as has Miss McCall. She has taken computer lessons and Maths with Grade 7. For the last few weeks of term we have also had assistance from Miss Franziska Neubert from Germany and Mitch and Sharon Geesey from Loloma Mission. All three will be on the staff next term too. Mr. Bierworth will be on leave in Canada then so we wish him well and thank him for all his hard work behind the scenes here over the past two years. He can't be parted from his bikes for too long so plans to be back for the third term! At the time of writing we still need a Caterer for the second and third terms, so please pray for someone to take on this important responsibility.

We were sad to hear of the death of Miss Marjorie Ross in December last year from a heart attack. At the memorial service several former pupils shared how she had been a help and encouragement to them. One shared of his conversion through her teaching and others remembered that she always seemed to be smiling. Miss Rae Masterton (who was here in the 1960's) passed away in November after a long illness. She was very pleased to have attended the 75th anniversary and to have met up with a lot of past pupils. We are sure both these staff members heard the Lord's `Well done' as they entered His glory.

The Birthday Party

We were eating chicken and chips and lots of good things. We had crackers and in the crackers were lots of sweets. I liked the sweets on the cake. We were eating popcorn. Lots of children had their birthdays at the birthday party. We had meringues. We had lots of shows from grades 5 - 7. We drew pictures for the birthday party. My best show was the three little pigs.

Jonathan Chizelu (Grade 2)

Presidential elections were held at the end of last year and President Mwanawasa was voted into office. He is in the same party as former President Chiluba. There was some unrest in the urban areas but we thank the Lord that peace has prevailed. This has been the case in Zambia while all the surrounding countries endure many hardships. Refugees continue to enter the country but are not living near Sakeji. The Embassies continue to be concerned about the proximity of the school to the borders but as in the past, we have experienced no conflict at or near here, instead we know the Lord's peace and protection.

Looking back over the term we have seen the Lord's protection and presence in many different situations. There have been unpleasant visits from snakes near the children, a power surge from the generator which didn't destroy any of the computers or important equipment, and many had electrical storms. The river flowed over the bridge recently but no lasting damage was done. With the dry season already starting in other parts of Zambia we look forward to shorter, cooler days but freedom from the dangers of lightning. We felt a small earth tremor earlier in the term and we could do nothing to stop the ground moving under our feet. The newer buildings have firmer foundations so did not shake so much. May we all know that our lives are founded on the Lord Jesus Christ, the One firm foundation who will never move from under us whatever we may do. As Paul says in 2 Timothy 2v19: "Nevertheless, God's solid foundation stands firm... `The Lord knows those who are His'." It is great to know this certainty amidst all the changes ahead this year at Sakeji.

We value your prayers and would like to keep in contact with you. If you no longer wish to receive these letters PLEASE let us know. It costs quite a bit to send them out, so we want to be sure they are appreciated and are of interest and use. We would like to thank you for your prayers, interest and support. May you know the Lord's blessing in your lives.

Yours sincerely.

Hilary Millard
Acting Head Teacher

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