Alifokpa Road Trip

7 07 2009

Since the Hillcrest church is closed this summer, we have had opportunities to visit other Nigerian churches.  It is inspiring to experience how people worship God around the world.  You can share the a bit of the experience with us through the video clips we have posted. When a group of white missionaries show up at a Nigerian church, you are often get extra attention, and may even end up sitting up in front with the pastors and worship leaders!

We just returned from a week of traveling through rural southeast Nigeria with another missionary family.  We had an amazing journey seeing what other missionaries are doing with Bible translation, visiting local villages, and even sharing a meal and staying overnight in a tiny village called Alifokpa, where Ivan grew up and still visits often.  It was an experience right out of National Geographic, as we traveled through rain forest and dense jungle where the temperature and humidity are both in the high 80s, up to a mountaintop ranch/resort at 5280 feet where we were among the clouds, and experienced more of the people and places of Nigeria.

The girls loved it and we have a fun video of our kids teaching the village kids how to play tag.   We went shopping in a rural village market where we attracted A LOT of attention.  They are not used to seeing white people.  Many of the roads were dirt and filled with huge potholes and puddles.  The paved roads were worse because they crumble and create dangerous holes and steep edges.  We managed to not get stuck in any of them in our new van, although we got very muddy and scraped the bottom a few times. You always have to pay close attention to the road, other traffic, people and animals along (and on) the roadway.  Some things we experienced along the way that are just a little different than American traveling…military checkpoints in and out of our city of Jos, police who stop us and ask for “pure water”.  We gave them ‘Living Water’ (Bible tracts)!   ‘Nail boys’ who stop you by placing boards of nails in the road.  The local government allows them to collect money from commercial vehicles, as long as the government gets their cut.  We just had to convince them our vehicle is for personal use.  We had no problems being detained (this time), but we have heard stories otherwise.

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