The only info I have about where our team was heading from Pemba is their flight itinerary, which takes them to Beira, but there's no Iris base listed in Beira, so this required some detective work to try to figure out where they're headed next. While on Iris' website, I explored the various bases and discovered names that sounded familiar - Brian & Lorena Wood. These names are familiar, because all the objects Brooke was asked to pack in her suitcase to take to the missionaries were labeled with their names. Since they are listed as the directors of the Mocuba base, I assume this is where they will be going. I must admit, it's a little unsettling for a momma to not know exactly where her daughter is when she's on another continent! I'm just thankful she is never out of her Heavenly Father's sight!
And so, assuming my detective work is accurate and they are indeed going to Mocuba, here is a little info about what they are all about as described on Iris' website:
This Iris base focuses on training and developing pastors and children's ministry leaders for the province of Zambezia. Only a few months old, facilities are currently under construction. March 7th -11th, 2011 marks the first week of training as the top leaders (all the district pastors) in the province come together for our first seminar. Being a province without leadership for the past two years, and many churches needing encouragement, we invite visiting teams and missionaries to come - ready to teach, pray for, and generally bless the struggling Church Body here. You can help the Church by joining them in their evangelism efforts as well, as you go out together in the villages to show the Jesus Film, pray for the sick, share the gospel house to house, etc. Accommodations will be ready for teams later this year, though they will be very simple.
I'm very excited for Ed, Kay, & Brooke especially to spend some time here, since they all serve in children's ministry. In fact, we met Ed & Kay many years ago when they were Bible Drill leaders at our former church and Eddy & I had the privilege of serving alongside "Mr. Ed" in children's worship at that church for several years. Now at our new church, both Ed & Kay teach children's Sunday School and Brooke takes care of the kiddos during our Friday night service as well as teaches preschool Sunday School. Our church, The Nest is all about approaching God with childlike faith. We recognize that Jesus has a special place in His heart for kids, as demonstrated in one of my favorite Bible stories - Jesus blessing the children. We do not believe that children should be seen and not heard. We believe just the opposite. When one of our kids at church gets a word or sees a picture with their spiritual eyes, we sit up and take notice! After all, it was Jesus Himself Who said the Kingdom belonged to such as these.
I have a feeling this portion of the journey will be one where our team learns from the churches there and the churches will learn from our team. Who knows, maybe they'll even come back having learned some Portugese!