Monday, 28 November 2011



Monday morning. Mariette (born AGOSSOU) came with her mother Didi (officially Leocadi) to talk about terms of employment. Born in 1975, already a widow. We were impressed by her friendliness, her ability to think things through, and her determination to provide for herself and her children, Stephane (17), Marie-Louis (14), Cynthia (9) and ExaucĂ© (4).  It’s only a first impression, but we think we’ll be happy to have her around. Didi did a lot of crying, partly for relief that one of her many worries seems te be resolved, partly because handing over the key to the house and taking backstage means the end of a long and honourable role as housekeeper for her.
While we were wrapping up, T............ showed up with his junior wife. Yesterday, after church in Djakotomey, we had been invited by his senior wife M (in total he has either four or five) to her home for a cool drink. T............ is a hugely interesting man, in some respects mainstay of the community, and – as far as we have been able to discover – a devout Christian; but he has a decidedly African view of marriage. He does care for his wives and many children well, that must be said. But the multiplication of spouses does not promote domestic harmony. M is the peacemaker, we are told. This morning he came from his farm (where he has been living with number four – or five – for the last while) to pay his respects to le nouveau Pasteur. We had an enjoyable visit, and said our farewells with mixed feelings. T............ was barely gone, and KOFFI Moise showed up, leader of the church at Migbowomey. A reliable, intelligent and respected man, Moise came to discuss the building plans of his congregation. The group has saved up their share of the money to buy a piece of property, on which a proper brick church can be erected. DVN/Gowa is supportive, but to promote independence and selfreliance, policy is that the local congregation must always provide the initial amount for both property and building before our finances become available. The letter from his congregation which he came bearing was a joy to read, and conversing with brother Moise was a privilege. What makes it particularly special, however, is the fact that Moise is blind. African Lesson One: do not focus on impossibilities.


  1. I love the pieces you're writing. The are very enjoyable to read and also quite informative.

  2. Wow, and this is just a fraction of the interesting people you will meet there:) Enjoy!

  3. For God, there are no impossibilities!
    Love, Ian