Friday, June 16, 2006

Malaysia Update

Hello again!

We did get our luggage a couple of days ago - it's been great to have our team supplies for our youth meetings (and clean clothes have been a nice change as well!)

Just for clarification: Malaysia is 12 hours ahead of Atlanta, not 8.

We have spent Thursday at the Children's Home and Friday at the Boys' Home, both of which are in Ipoh. In the mornings we would have an informational meeting about the workings of the building and then a tour. We had lunch with the children (there are never many at lunch because the majority of them go to school in teh morning, and only a few go in the afternoon) and then we would have the afternoon to rest and plan our evening program. We spent both days getting to know the kids, who are all very friendly. They are very active and love games of all kinds. Communication is easier at the Children's Home, where they all know some English (some better than others), and harder at the Boys' Home, where they speak more Chinese and Malay and less English. However, when they are addressed as a group it is in English. Malay, Chinese, Tamil, and English are spoken here, and everyone knows at least one language, often switching from one to the other. Both evenings we did a game night for the kids. At the Children's Home it was very loud and confused because it was mostly the younger kids. We played some group games and taught them some songs (and new and improved motions to Father Abraham). Although we had about 50 boys at the Boys' Home, the game night was more organized and we could get them quiet enough to hear the instructions. With them we did a lot of relay games which they really got into. Both nights were a lot of fun for both us and the kids, and we came away tired and hot, but with a good experience.

Today (Saturday) we did a prayer walk around the corps area in Ipoh. There are a lot of Chinese in this area. For lunch we had Indian food at Captains Augustine and Ruth's home, and for some cultural experience (and because there weren't enough spoons) we ate our rice, beans, and boiled eggs with our hands.

By the way, the food here is wonderful and varied. There are so many kinds of spices and textures and blends of Chinese, Indian, and Malay influences. We're trying a lot of fruit as well - dragonfruit, waterchesnuts, mango.

This afternoon we're relaxing in the Captains' home and watching some Indian movies and planning the youth rally meeting tonight and the program for tomorrow. The Captains let us help out a lot, and the meeting tonight and Sunday School tomorrow will be lead by us.

Well, that's all I have time for now. Keep us in your prayers - there is so much opportunity for Christian growth here!


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