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SeSe Beach on Lake Victoria Entebbe, Uganda

Together . . . on TheJourney

Welcome to TheJourney

Stories of our pilgrimage in Africa.

High rise termite mound in Entebbe, Uganda
High rise termite mound in Entebbe, Uganda

Window clock in Entebbe Church:  “It don’t mean nothing.” EntebbeWindowClock

This week’s African proverb:

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together. “


Curt at Entebbe Market with three new friends: an Ugandan, Congolese, and Tanzanian.
Curt at Entebbe Market with three new friends: an Ugandan, Congolese, and Tanzanian.

A good word:   Tunatembeana

It’s a word that’s a mouthful.  Tunatembeana

It’s a Swahili word that is also a complete sentence.

I love its meaning:  “We will walk together.”  Tu= we  na= will  tembeana= walk together.

I love how I see it used in Africa.  When you visit in a home, the hosts will walk at least part of the way home with you, often holding your hand in the process.  It’s their way of showing your value and their hospitality.

Tunatembeana.  It’s a word for our American friends who have sent us, are praying for us, taking care of our families.  Thanks for walking together with us.

Stalks of fresh bananas
Stalks of fresh bananas

Praying for us this week:

  • We’re still in Entebbe, Uganda with Bob and Nancy Calvert, our friends and co-workers.  Pray for ministry opportunities as we make friends in Uganda.
  • Keep praying for Kenya.  The election resulted in a razor thin margin of victory for Uhuru Kenyatta, son of Kenya’s first president. The second place finisher, Raihal Odinga, is contesting the results but has urged his supporters (especially his own Luo tribe) to remain peaceful.  Keep praying for peace and unity.
  • We visited a nearby Unreached People Group last week.  TheGoPeople (what we’ll call them) are from the Nile River area, completely Muslim, and not currently being reached with the Gospel.  Join us in prayer for TheGoPeople.
  • Keep praying for our language study.  The Calverts are fluent in Kiswahili and are keeping us sharp but we are anxious to get back to our class in Kenya.
Finally, pray for the country of South Sudan.  This year-old country is open to and for the Gospel.  It is where our team will be concentrating our work in the coming years.
This is an ethnological map of South Sudan and Republic of Sudan.  There are tribes/languages/villages that have never heard of Yesu.  Begin praying on any the Lord lays on your heart.
This is an ethnological map of South Sudan and Republic of Sudan. There are tribes/languages/villages that have never heard of Yesu. Begin praying for any the Lord lays on your heart.


Juxtaposition: Quick as a snake

 We’re riding in a taxi through the crush of a crowd walking to two major Kenyan election rallies.  The Jubilee supporters wear bright red.  We pass a roundabout (intersection) and the colors turn bright orange for the CORD supporters.

 We’re stalled in traffic three lanes wide.  A group of young men pass through the cars on their way to a rally.  Quick as a snake, one reaches in and snatches a cell phone from the grasp of the driver in front of us.

 The driver gets out his car and pursues the thief leaving his car sitting there.

 I quickly roll up my window.  It may be hot but I’m not taking chances.  They might snatch my Wal Mart watch (bad) or my LSU cap (worse).

 My keyword for 2013 is Juxtaposition.  It’s the process of comparing and contrasting things.  It’s a good exercise in Africa.

 We’ve been here for six week and have been met with much understanding and kindness of new friends and strangers.  They always ask,  “Do you like Kenya?”

 We answer readily,  “We love Kenya.  It’s a beautiful country, but what makes it most beautiful are the people.  This always evinces a wide Kenyan smile.

 However, Kenya is also a land of crime and thievery. If it’s not tied down, it will grow nigu (legs) and walk off.

 It’s somewhat like my own country.  A wonderfully frustrating blend of love and hate, honesty and corruption.  The best—and worst—and of human nature.



I’m sure we’ll  see plenty of juxtaposition throughout our African journey.

 Pajoma (Together)




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Curt   aka “Baba Clay”*  and “Bwana Nne.”**

* Many Africans are called by the name of their oldest child.  So “Baba Clay” means “Clay’s Father.”  Since Africans cannot easily say “Curt” I usually introduced myself as Baba Clay.

** My second name is “Bwana Nne.”   Bwana means “mister/sir” (and can also mean “Lord” such as “Yesu is Bwana.”)   Nne is the number four in Swahili. I have a difficult time getting the N-n sound right, so my teacher,  DaDa Stella, named me “Bwana Nne.”

My word for this week is Encouragement. It’s the word I want to be known for: an encourager who walked along beside others.

Read Curt’s Current Six Words to live by

My current favorite Swahili term/word:  Tunatumbeana   We will walk together!

What I’m currently reading:

The Insanity of God by Nick Ripken (a must read)

  • _thumbBack of PrayerCard

Where we are now:

  • MyLife Statement: “To be a man God can use and be respected by my wife DeDe, our sons, and their precious families.”



What I’m currently reading:

The Insanity of God  by Nik Ripkin

My current Heartsong “How Firm a Foundation.”  It’s a song that gives me great strength in the trials, struggles, and joys of life.

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About Curt Iles

I write to have influence and impact through well-told stories of my Louisiana and African sojourn.

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