We missed a day of blogging because our Saturday was incredibly full! Our Sunday has been very full as well, but I’ve found a few moments before dinner to blog about the weekend.
On Saturday morning, we woke up and drove about thrity minutes to the foot of Mount Longonot, a dormant volcano in the Rift Valley. There we met six Kenyan college students who will be with us for the rest of our stay. Longonot is a pretty interesting spectacle… the bowl of the dormant volcano houses its own biome. Visitors to Longonot hike a very technical (without requiring gear) 3.1 km (630 feet ascent) route to the rim of the bowl where one can see amazing views of the surrounding countryside and the volcano’s bowl. The more adventurous can hike the 7.2 km circumference of the rim. Of the fourteen of us who attempted the climb, all of us made it up, but only eleven attempted (and completed!) the rim hike. We enjoyed the chance to breathe some fresh air, to see some beautiful scenery and to get to know our Kenyan brothers and sisters.
We made our way back to Naivasha for showers and clean clothes and then we joined the newly arrived K2K Community Team at their guesthouse for dinner. They successfully arrived in Kenya on Friday night, but this was our first chance to see them. We will be overlapping their time in Kenya for about a week. The meal was delicious and the chance to meet some new friends at the beginning of their Kenya journey was a joy!
This morning (Sunday), we awoke early to caravan down to Maai Mahiu for Sunday services at All Saints’ Anglican. It was quite a service, lasting almost three hours! Members of the Bishop’s staff came down to fellowship with us and the entire Community and College Teams were introduced. We heard from several different choirs and Deacon Barbara Gibson (from St. John’s, Wichita) preached on the Gospel lesson: the faithful centurion.
After church, the college team joined the vicar of All Saints, Rev. Joshua, in some pastoral visits around Maai Mahiu.
Throughout all the activity of the weekend, I was thinking about the volatility of community. For about a week, the College Team existed on its own and we were continually forming our own community. However, this weekend, we had to invite the volatility of three separate communities into ours: the Kenyan students, the Community Team and the congregation of All Saints, Maai Mahiu.
We can get comfortable in community. If you spend enough time with a group of people and you’ll be able to predict others’ behavior. But the safety of a static community is not what we, as Chrisitans, are called to. We are called to constantly be inviting others into our community, into the body of Christ. Jesus had his intimate brotherhood, his community of disciples, but he was never content to just be with them. He always had room for the stranger, always made an excuse to join another party.
As we form communities of Christ at home and abroad, may the Lord continue to bless us and keep us.