ALI Blog

May 2016 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

What single event would make your day? Maybe a sweet kiss from your child or grandchild? Perhaps a promotion at work, or an unexpected check in the mail? For me it happened last month when I read the following post by Thomas Okwera on Facebook: “I think I did my best to arrange my classroom environment to make this year’s parent-visitation day colorful. Thanks be to God and to Dan Perrine for being a very good coach and mentor to me. I still remember his words of encouragement when we last met in Uganda at Destiny High School in 2013. I love to teach, and I love to see my students teaching each other as they practice high levels of cognitive thinking.” Wow! Those words brought tears to my eyes!


More “make your day” news from Mark and Cathy Lessig: After vetting 25 schools in Kenya, God enabled them to discern those who were most authentically open to the leadership of Christ in their classrooms. ALI has now partnered with four new schools in the Eldoret area, all with great potential. Each school is very unique: one is in a slum and another is the top school in Eldoret; one is a Catholic school and another is run as a business. Mark and Cathy will be busy for years to come as our ministry touches the lives of hundreds of children, from the poorest of the poor, to those with many more resources and opportunities, and many teachers and school leaders

As ALI’s training strives to teach about Jesus Christ and encourage teachers to build upon that foundation, some find this truth attractive, while others in a "works based" religious system find it offensive to their cultural norms. Yet one leadership team the Lessig’s worked with were so moved by God’s Word that they stopped during the training and asked Mark and Cathy, "What can we do to give this to our teachers right away?" How precious to see educators discover that God really DOES love them, and that He really DOES have a plan for their lives! Teachers are experiencing the joy of teaching about Jesus for the glory of God, which carries so much more meaning than educating students solely to get higher exam scores and a paycheck!

Please pray for Mark and Cathy in Kenya, asking God to give them:
1.    The energy for a very busy training schedule as they train over 130 teachers and 50 school leaders! (We have no idea how many hundreds of lives will be touched through these schools!)
2.    More volunteer teachers (maybe YOU!) to join them in working with ALI in Kenya, either short or long term.
3.    Discernment and wisdom to work creatively with these diverse schools and effectively expand God's Kingdom in Kenya.

Karin Knutson, another ALI team member, will also “make my day” when she and her husband, Randy, head to Cameroon this summer to explore how ALI can best work with 25 church-supported schools. She will be meeting with other organizations to see how greater collaboration can promote effective educational reform in West Africa. Karin will also be joining forces with Church Resource Ministries’ Dr. Tom Dumbacher to begin a research project on educational reform. A challenge they face is that Cameroon is predominantly French speaking, which will require them to work with interpreters. Anyone know a proficient French-speaking teacher who would like to join Karin in Cameroon?

Please pray for Karin and Randy in Cameroon, asking God to give them:
1.    Wisdom and discernment as they explore educational development and reform, as well as vet schools for ALI training.
2.    French speaking educators to join them.
3.    Funds to start this new work.

The ALI team members deeply appreciate all our friends who support us in so many ways. I know my faith has been strengthened as I have seen God faithfully meet our needs day by day. With our work growing dramatically on both sides of the African continent, we are asking God to guide our steps and provide all the resources we need—both staffing and funding—to continue His important educational ministry in Africa.
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