Sep 30

Shoes and Visas

What do the two have in common. Well, nothing really (although you can buy shoes with your Visa credit card, but that’s not the type of visa I have in mind). I just thought the two together would make a good headline.

Missionary Todd Ohlmann was able to get his visas to Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo. I am waiting on some letters and a corrected residence permit, but I will be applying for mine soon, as will Kossi (for the DRC, he doesn’t need one for Nigeria). Pray that Kossi and I are able to get the visas soon,

Speaking of Pastor Kossi. He was wearing shoes yesterday. Why is that significant, you may ask? It shows the recovery he has had from his accident. Up until yesterday he has been wearing flip-flops because his left foot has been so swollen. The physical therapy and medicine he has been receiving evidently is helping him heal, as his foot is almost back to normal. Praise God for preserving Kossi’s life in the accident and for the rapid healing he has experienced!

Sep 25

Permits, Visas, and Cards, oh my!

I just realized that I forgot to report here that I received my Stay Card (Carte de Séjour). Much thanks goes to Pastor Kossi who did almost all the legwork and had the contacts to make this super easy, barely an inconvenience.

The Carte de Séjour is an official Togolese ID and allows me to stay for a year without any problems. It also makes me a card-carrying missionary, as that is what is given as my profession on the card.

Despite Pastor Kossi’s injuries, he spent today running around checking on requirements for a visa to Nigeria and getting paperwork requested for the visa to Nigeria and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), like a residency permit and a certificate of non-condemnation (to show I haven’t done anything illegal here).

Lord willing, Pastor Kossi and I will go to Nigeria with Missionary Todd Ohlmann at the end of October for a week, and then to the DRC for two weeks. Please pray that both Missionary Ohlmann and I can get the needed Visas , I just heard from Missionary Ohlmann that he was able to get his visa for the DRC. He had been denied the past few times because of the political situation.

It turns out that a Nigerian visa should be fairly easy as I am now officially a resident in Togo, which is one of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS/CEDEAO [Communauté Economique des Etats de l’Afrique de l’Ouest]), as is Nigeria. Pastor Kossi does not even need a visa to travel to Nigeria.

Thank the Lord for granting a Stay Card! And for Pastor Kossi being willing to run so many errands, even though he probably should be resting and recovering from his accident (see the next post).

Sep 17

Updated: Accident 🏍💥🚙

Monday last week, Pastor Kossi Blewu was traveling (on motorcycle) up to the land we purchased to check on the agriculture work there. He was making a left turn (and signaling) when the car behind him thought he was going to make a right, so the car tried to pass him on the left and they collided.

By God’s grace, Kossi was not gravely injured, even though everyone who witnessed the accident thought he was surely dead. He was taken to the hospital, which was nearby and spent the night there. He did not suffer any broken bones but his foot required a number of stitches. He went back to the hospital in pain on Thursday.

Kossi returned to Lomé last Friday. He is supposed to rest and not walk much, but he came picked me up in a taxi Saturday to go distribute school supplies to the orphans and to the kids in need. He was limping rather severely and obviously in pain. He has some severe abrasions that are visible and wounds that are covered.

The driver of the car turns out to be a pastor. The local police chief was coincidently (miraculously) there when the accident happened, and so witnessed the whole thing. And Kossi’s motorcycle was only very minimally damaged in the accident.

Please keep Kossi in your prayers as he recovers, especially that he will not push himself until he is better. And thank the Lord for His grace that things were not so much worse!

UPDATE 9/21/19: Kossi went to the hospital and had either the dressing on his foot removed or the stitches removed. I will know more tomorrow. This week he was in a lot more pain and has had trouble walking. I’d like to think that it is his body healing and he is feeling worse before he gets better. Check back for a more detailed update tomorrow.

UPDATE 9/22/19: Kossi will return to the hospital tomorrow (Monday) for followup. His left foot is still very swollen. He said it has gone down. Saturday they removed the stitches. They are recommending another x-ray to verify that he didn’t actually break something.

Kossi wants to make a trip up to see the land we helped them purchase on which to grow crops, raise animals, and build a church and possibly a school/seminary building. I don’t want him to push himself and slow his recovery. We will see what the doctor says tomorrow. Check back for further updates.

UPDATE 9/25/19: Kossi went back to the doctor today for x-rays. They confirmed that no bones were broken. His left foot is much less swollen. He did some physical therapy. The doctor said he was very smart to come in for treatment now, otherwise he would have more problems down the road.