What’s In a Name?

As someone who loves to read and write, I love words. A perfectly-turned phrase can make my heart go zing. String those phrases and sentences together and we can read or listen to something that makes us laugh, cry, fume, gasp, and absorb.

In 2019, there are A LOT of words out there. Because they are available to us 24/7/365, they can overwhelm and cause us to turn away. Or cause us to only turn to memes about dog, cats, and Marvel movies.  

We can get desensitized to what we read and hear and it’s understandable. This can cause us to take in diluted meaning and truth, or put a hand up to say, “Stop”. Sometimes a break is good. And sometimes forcing ourselves to slow down and ponder the truth of what we are reading is also good. We’ve known for a long time now what AIDS is, but have you read the definition lately?  I looked at the meaning of each word in the name ROWAN and it stopped me short.  Please read what each of the words in the ROWAN title means.  From Webster’s Dictionary:

RURAL: of or relating to the country, country people or life, or agriculture

ORPHANS: a child deprived by death of one or usually both parents

WIDOWS: a woman who has lost her spouse or partner by death and usually has not remarried, or whose spouse or partner leaves her alone

AIDS: a disease of the human immune system that is characterized cytologically especially by reduction in the numbers of CD4-bearing helper T cells to 20 percent or less of normal thereby rendering the subject highly vulnerable to life-threatening conditions (such as Pneumocystis carinii pneumonia) and to some (such as Kaposi’s sarcoma) that become life-threatening and that is caused by infection with HIV commonly transmitted in infected blood especially during illicit intravenous drug use and in bodily secretions during sexual intercourse

NETWORK: a usually informally interconnected group or association of persons; a fabric or structure of cords or wires that cross at regular intervals and are knotted or secured at the crossings 

Whether you are part of the ROWAN family or just learning about Eastern Uganda, to pause and understand what ROWAN is, what each word in the name means, is a good thing. It helps us remember in the 21st century glut of words that we can look clearly at the people in the village, at their pain and their hope, at their knotted and secure relationships with God and each other, and know the truth. The words of ROWAN allow us to learn and help and not turn away.  

Would you like to join us?

Birds of Uganda – Superb Starling

Given it’s equatorial location & abundant fresh water, the sheer density of wildlife in Uganda can make your head spin. There are (way) over 1000 confirmed bird species found in the country alone. And what birds, some of them look like runway models! We have already looked at the Violet-backs, Red-wings & Wattled Starlings, so today lets meet another member of the starling family, the Superb Starling (or Lamprotornis superbus). Continue reading “Birds of Uganda – Superb Starling”

God’s Creation – Sipi Falls

If you ever have the pleasure of going to Uganda and you have a day or two with no plans, I would suggest going a little farther east, past ROWAN to Kapchorwa. While there, you will have the opportunity to meet some very friendly people, maybe purchase some local coffee beans and hike to three absolutely breathtaking falls.  

I have had the pleasure of visiting Sipi Falls twice.  Once with a friend of mine just for the day and the second time, with my husband for our honeymoon.  Both times we were well taken care of with a guided tour to all three of the falls as well as the caves behind.  Both times it poured rain on us and we used banana leaves as umbrellas.  Both times were beautiful days and many chances to take some amazing photos of some stunning scenery.

My husband even braved getting as close as he could the the largest of the three falls.  He went down to the rock at the bottom of the falls where he was showered with the mist and came back to the path soaking wet.  He could even wring out his socks.  

The hike takes about three hours to visit all three falls and the path is rocky and steep in some areas but so worth it.  If you do make a trip to visit Sipi Falls and plan to stay the night, I would suggest taking some “warmer” clothes as it can really cool down there in the evenings.  

My husband and I stayed at Lacam Lodge and were treated like royalty.  Their bandas are located right at the top of a cliff and overlook the falls.  We woke up to amazing views and wonderful food.  I am sure there are other amazing resorts, lodges and camps as many people visit these falls.  

I remember being in awe of how beautiful everything was around me.  Everywhere I looked I could see how the hand of God was so powerful and how unbelievably wonderful his creation is. It makes it very clear to me that I worship an incredible God. I am amazed that a God, who created such a beautiful world for us to live in, also created me.  

 

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” Psalm 19:1 (NIV)

 

 

Birds of Uganda – Wattled Starling

Mostly due to it’s equatorial location & abundant fresh water, the sheer density of wildlife in Uganda can make your head spin. There are (well) over 1000 confirmed bird species found in the country alone. And what birds, some of them look like runway models! We have already looked at the Violet-backs & Red-wings, so today lets meet another handsome member of the starling family, the Wattled Starling (or Creatophora cinerea). Continue reading “Birds of Uganda – Wattled Starling”

Birds of Uganda – Red-Winged Starling

Due to it’s equatorial location & abundant fresh water, the sheer density of wildlife in Uganda can make your head spin. There are (well) over 1000 confirmed bird species found in the country alone. And what birds, some of them look like runway models! We are so excited about this fun series on birds. Last week we looked at the lovely Violet-backed Starling & today we will meet another handsome member of the starling family, the Red-winged Starling. Continue reading “Birds of Uganda – Red-Winged Starling”