Thursday, March 25, 2010

Surprise Meeting with Rick

This evening something quite amazing happened. I was working late at the doctors' office at the hospital, and around 6 pm, our receptionist, Rilley, told me that Dr. Befus' brother had stopped in, and when he saw I was busy he said he'd be around and would check back later. I expressed my disbelief to Rilley, and all she said was "He resembles Dr. Befus!" Dr. Steve Befus served here with SIM for many years, taught me much of what I know, and was the one person most responsible (besides the Lord) for ELWA Hospital's survival through the war years. Steve passed away in 2003 due to cancer. I was kind of trying to figure out what Steve's brother would be doing here, and if it really was true. A bit later I stepped outside of the front door to take a call and saw him across the parking area! He was tall and walked a bit like Steve--the resemblance was unmistakable. His name is Rick Befus, and he's part of a team here from a church called "Harvest Chapel" in the Chicago area (correct me if I got the name wrong). He's been teaching at a church just a couple miles from here this week, and returns to the U.S. tomorrow. We talked briefly. It was great to connect with him, and great to be reminded of Steve B. and his faithfulness for 20 years of service to His Lord. Thanks God for arranging that! --Rick

Monday, March 15, 2010

Newsletter from Sacras

Here is a link to download our latest Newsletter--it's kind of a family update with some prayer needs and praise items. Thanks for listening!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mt Coffee, Liberia

Hey... Mt Coffee... sounds like someplace you dream about with Starbucks and Dunkin Donuts at the summit! But it's actually the location in Liberia where the big hydroelectric plant used to be... and may be again some day. The team that has been out doing work on the ELWA power system, headed up by Steve Kejr, wanted to visit the old hydro-power plant on a Sunday and so the Sacras and the Lairds joined them on a little "field trip"--we started out with church in Kollieman Town, Todee District, which was quite nice... and then the Pastor, James Richards guided us on our way to Mount Coffee where he'd arranged several locally knowledgeable folks to give us a guided tour around the old hydro plant, and then on a hike about 1.8 miles up the old riverbed to the site of the major dam that diverted water to the hydro plant. It was about the hottest day of the year so far, so that was a little challenge for us, but we had a great time! Enjoy a few pictures and comments from the trip:

Here it is from the outside, and then, below, from the inside. It had 4 huge turbines inside, and during the wet season,provided a big part of Monrovia's electricity.

The insiders' view of the turbine's "home".

Then on the hike up to the main dam, the boys enjoyed themselves along the way--caves and cliffs, streams and rocks!

And a little drama for mom's sake (she was enjoying a lady's retreat in Ghana)... Please don't worry, Jared had his feet on a nice little ledge, perfect for standing on... honest!

Finally we made it to the big dam, built in the 60s, and with lots of evidence of partnership... parts from Wisconsin, parts with "Bethlehem Steel" stamped on them. The costs of restoring this project would be great, but imagine the rewards! With 200 plus inches of rain per year, Liberia's hydropower potential is awesome!

And for me, the view of the wide St. Paul River from the dam made it all worth it! Praise God!