March 2015 Sue Silva Update
Coming back to Canada from Sierra Leone in Sept. 2014, I put myself in voluntary quarantine for 3 weeks, because of Ebola. This helped to put people at ease that they would not become sick. I received that time as a good period of rest and refreshment, although it was a little lonely. When it finished, I hit the ground running, speaking to many churches, groups and individuals, many of which were new. I am always excited to speak to new groups and churches, that have no idea who 'Iris' is and what I do. It brings much joy to my heart!
At the end of November I left for Malawi for 3 months, to spend some time renewing friendships, hugging all those I missed so dearly and ended up having some amazing God appointments! I praise God for His perfect timing.
I was able to get back to doing the police ministry. The missionary gal who took it over from me was leaving so I was pleased to fill in for her. What a joy it was, to minister with my team again, and to see the hand of God bring life and encouragement to many suspects and police officers.
Early in January a cyclone positioned itself over Malawi, bringing devastating results! Flooding was at a level throughout the country that had never been experienced before!! Bangula and the Lower Shire District was hard hit. Our director and fellow missionary took our 2 boats out the next day, to begin a massive rescue operation. People were rescued off termite hills and trees, but hundreds were not so lucky. Whole villages were washed away or buried in the silt from the torrential flow of the river, as it ripped huge hunks of land and bridges downstream. It will take months, possibly years to rebuild and get the gardens productive again. Many lives were lost, being dragged in by the strong currents or taken by crocodiles.
[A Young boy who made his cooker from local clay...having lost all in the floods.]
Many camps were set up throughout the country for the displaced people. The largest camp is in Bangula, with 6500 people! We would go regularly to listen to heart wrenching stories, offer our prayers for healing (physically as well as emotionally and spiritually) and bring food. We were often told of healings and answered prayer when we would return another day. Praise God!
[A widow at the displaced people camp, that we prayed for and was healed.]
Our Iris Pastors at the bible school would go on various days and do services. Rolland Baker, Iris' co-founder, flew in with his team and did a mini conference. Many received prayer and were encouraged, healed and delivered.
[Mini conference with Rolland Baker in the displaced peoples' camp in Bangula, Malawi.]
I had to leave after 3 months, being on a visitor's permit, but also needed to get back to Canada in March, for my nephew's wedding on March 21. It was a wedding that brought great honour and pleasure to God and to us as a family.
I will be in Canada for 2 more weddings, one of them being my daughter, Nikki's, on June 13th. I plan to return to Sierra Leone, after the 18th of July, and am trusting for a visa to allow me back into the country. I am missing the people terribly.
Thank you for your prayers and support. We are building the Kingdom of God together!