Robinson ministry update - November 2020
Well, things have been pretty interesting around here over the last month or so.
First -- there was a protest movement that gathered a lot of momentum all over Nigeria. The underlying issue was about one particular police unit (SARS) accused of police brutality, and the protests gained momentum.
Second -- some independent trouble in Jos which we believe was actually unrelated to the protests but the combination meant we spent a few days under 24 hour curfew.
Third -- some of the government's warehouses were looted and the provisions that had been stored for palliative care in case of a second covid lockdown were taken. This is quite an interesting BBC article talking about what happened and why: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54695568 So we had some more curfew time. Thankfully, since that curfew was lifted in the middle of last week, things have been pretty quiet. Fourth -- both the Director and his wife (Tom and Robyn Crabtree) got sick. Tom recovered fairly quickly but Robyn developed an obstruction in her intestines. After a few days in hospital she was released but is still really quite ill so the admin team here worked to get them back to the USA as soon as was reasonable. They landed in the US on Friday and are working on setting up the medical help they need. As a result, Tim is now serving as the Acting Director and likely will remain in that position until the new SIL Nigeria Director (Zach Yoder) and his family arrive from the USA, which we hope will be before the end of December. Tim has been working hard to process the work load and is grateful for all the various people who are stepping up and stepping in to help with various task so Tim can get them off his desk, recognising this arrangement may be a couple of months long and we want to avoid any hint of a possible return to burn out!
Dan has started back two/three days a week at school. They are using a cohort system so that each class is half the size and only goes in for half the time. He will still be doing online learning on the days he is at home. He has been finding the volume and difficulty of the work quite challenging over the last couple of weeks and getting quite frustrated as a result. He was much more positive after a day back in "real" school, just being able to interact with his teachers directly to ask questions and get feedback has been so helpful! Like everyone at the moment, the teachers have such a hard job on their hands, trying to maintain work for a variety of different teaching scenarios. Our house is still on the market and despite some interest from buyers we have decided to let our tenant (who was scheduled to move out in mid-Nov) stay on for now. The challenge for us is that new policies from the government mean we will now have to give him 6 months notice rather than the usual 2 when we want him to move out. We decided that the risk of having the house empty for a prolonged period and no-one paying rent was too great. We are praying that this will not put off buyers interested in the property.
Ministry is somehow, by God's grace, continuing in the middle of all this! One of the teams we've been working with here for many years was at the office to record the audio for a couple of their recently translated books.
It is amazing to think that soon their community will have MORE access to scripture in one of the languages that deeply speaks to them. Another cluster of the community resumed a quarterly stakeholders meeting to discuss the progress of the projects and the plans for the next year.
So that is where we are at! How's things with you? If you have time to drop us a line, we would love to hear from you! We are praying for those of you in the UK as you go into another lockdown.
Robyn able to fly back to the States for treatment
Dan positive about being back in school part time
Lots of ministry still happening around the country
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Wisdom and strength and patience and grace for Tim as he takes on the role of Acting Director
Robyn will get the treatment she needs quickly
Peace and provision for people's needs in Nigeria