Two Roads Newsletter
August 6, 2023
In this month’s update we will have Jennifer share with you about our recent trip to Uganda, update you on the criminal trial and we will have an update from Sarina who has started her year long (or so) internship in Kabale.
We previously announced new sponsorship fees increasing from $40 to $50 per month. This started in July and is the first increase in 8 years. We want to let all of our almost 100 existing sponsors know that now we are opening a period of voluntarily increasing your sponsorship to $50 per month. If you would be willing to do this just text or e-mail us. If you just can’t make this increase, we hope that you will continue as you have in the past. If you are an annual sponsor, please consider increasing you yearly sponsorship to $600. Please know that we take every dollar given as a gift from God and use it entirely in Uganda to help needy children and families.
Criminal trial: The trial actually began (for real) on May 28th with the first girl testifying. In the middle of her testimony the judge rescheduled the trial to July 12 & 13. The first girl continued her testimony only to have the case postponed again until July 17th. On July 17th the first girl finally completed her testimony including cross-examination. The judge then postponed the trial to Aug. 2&3. On the 2nd the second girl was able to testify (although the trial was rain delayed!) The doctor who examined the girls also testified. The judge postponed the trial to August 10th where Amos is scheduled to testify. The last of our witnesses is scheduled to appear in court on August 15th. There have been many miracles occur to protect the girls and Amos during all of this. We were in Kabale during one session of the court and we were able to do battle in prayer as things happened in “real time” .
After watching “The sound of Freedom” in the theater recently I was even more convinced that God has more work for us to do in Kabale in terms of rescuing and protecting victims of sexual assault and sex trafficking. Pray with us as we seek what God is leading us to in this regard.
A report from Sarina:Hello everyone!!
If you did not know, I’ve been in Uganda for the past 4 weeks. The first two weeks were filled with regular trip activities while we had a team here. We visited schools and families, met with the kids a few times, had countless fun moments with the Ugandan staff, and attended a few fellowships/church services. After the team left, I started to settle into a couple different roles that I will be fulfilling while I’m here. One of the roles is basically helping the staff in whatever way I can. Another role I found myself in this week is volunteering at one of the primary schools that some of the kids go to. This is a highlight of my week, as I have been wanting to volunteer/teach in a developing country for a few years. Basically, the teachers will give me a lesson to teach and then they leave for 2 hours. It’s definitely an interesting experience, but I’m grateful the Lord has allowed me to do this. Something I’ve been praying about for a few years!!
On Monday (this past week), I started learning Rukiga, the native language here!! One of the older kids is going to teach me throughout the week. While it will be nice to understand and speak Rukiga when I’m out and about in town, I’m hoping to develop deeper relationships, specifically with people who know little to no English. It will definitely take a long time to get to the point of being fluent, but I’m excited for this little journey. And besides, I’ve always wanted to be bilingual, so hopefully I’ll be able to claim that title soon, haha. Anyways, this is a glimpse of what life looks like as of now. What a privilege it is to serve God in this way. He is faithful. He is kind. Also, below I’ve included a few pictures, enjoy!!
Peace and love to you all 🙂
About the latest trip:
Uganda 2023Hello! My name is Jennifer Stone. As many of you may know, I am Greg and Donna’s daughter-in-law. I am married to their firstborn and only son, Benjamin. We have been married for 19 years, but the Stones have been a part of my life ever since childhood.
For the past eight years, I have heard Greg and Donna talk about trips to Uganda, 2Roads news, 2Roads staff and sponsored and unsponsored children and their families. I have prayed for many trips, concerns and trials faced in Uganda and individuals whom I have never met. My husband serves on the 2Roads board and we sponsor two children who live in Kabale.
During the fall of 2019, Greg and Donna held a 2Roads information night where they spoke about Uganda and the people of Kabale in detail. We sang worship together, prayed together and ate food traditionally served in Kabale. I felt my heart yearn to travel and love on these people I was learning more about. My husband and I prayerfully began the steps to prepare for my first ever international trip.
When the spring of 2020 rolled around, the world fell apart because of covid. Borders were shut and the trip was cancelled. Our family of five began a different path to serve. We became a fostering family and have had children in our home since the fall of 2020.
This year, we finally felt the timing was right to pick back up where we left off three years ago. I traveled with Greg and Donna to Kabale, Uganda!
All of the stories and names I have heard over the last eight years finally became reality. I lived with them in their town. I prayed with them…me in English, many of them in Rukiga. I ate their food (mostly). I walked their roads. I visited them in their homes. I learned many of their names and they learned mine. I went to their schools. I hugged their necks and they hugged mine. My heart rejoiced at the sight of their sweet and precious faces. And my heart ached at the life they live.
To me, Kabale is a town of extremes. When you look at the land, it is beautiful. It is so very lush and green. The valley is beautiful and the sky is big and blue. Then you look down…between the trees…and you see the dirty town. The one room, dirt floored homes. The nasty yellow jugs they travel with to get dirty water sometimes miles from their homes.
Then, there are the people. The people are so very precious. They are incredible. They work so very hard. They also know how to praise God through song and dance with all of their hearts. Their lives are so very simple. Yet, it is so complicated. They must work difficult and dirty jobs in order to make a few dollars to hopefully pay rent and buy some food.One of the hardest experiences from my trip was seeing a group of 8 – 13 year old boys working in a rock quarry. They work each day smashing rock into gravel and then loading it onto a flatbed truck with shovels. For their day’s work, they are paid about 35 cents. My heart shattered thinking about their lives. My children were back in America enjoying being children, but these boys are not getting that opportunity. They are working so that their family can survive. My heart aches for the joys of being a child they will never experience.
My visit to Kabale was a short two weeks. I fell in love with the remarkable staff of 2Roads. Amos, Tyra, Rosette, Julie and Wyckliff are amazing people whom I now count as friends. We shared meals, enjoyed hikes, sang sweet praises to God, and opened our hearts and lives to one another. The work they do can be overwhelming, but God is using them to make a difference in the families of Kabale.
I also fell in love with the kids of 2Roads. Oh, the kids! Their sweet, smiling faces! They always greet with a big smile and a hug. Their love and appreciation is tangible. I also got to meet the boys we have been sponsoring. One boy we have sponsored for the last eight years. I got to hug each of them and talk with them. I got to show them pictures of my family and tell them we pray for them and they are special to us.One of the best experiences from my trip was meeting a mom named Gift. I was surprised when she spoke clearly to me in English. She shared her life with me. She opened up to me about the difficulties of being a single mom trying to provide an opportunity for her children to attend school. After talking with the 2Roads staff, I realized that her oldest daughter has been listed on the 2Roads website needing support for several months. Ben and I prayed and discussed this situation that evening and felt led to sponsor her daughter whose name is Jemimah. What an amazing moment when I got to share with Jemimah at her school that she no longer had to fear being kicked out due to a lack of funds. When I told Gift that we were sponsoring her daughter, she exploded with joy and thanksgiving! I have never experienced such a humbling and rewarding moment.
The lives of those in Kabale is hard. They work hard and there is not a lot of hope for vast improvement in their day to day living conditions. However, we know the Hope. The people of Kabale need Jesus. Jesus gives us hope of peace in the midst of trials and tribulations and difficult days. Jesus gives us hope of a perfect place called heaven where we will live with Him.
Please join me in prayer for the people of Kabale. Pray that they can recognize Jesus as Lord in their lives. Pray that they will seek Him first and learn to love Him with all of their hearts, souls, minds and strength. Pray for the staff of Kabale as God guides them according to His will to love and serve the people of Kabale. Pray for God’s provision and continued grace and mercy.
Your sister in Christ,
Blessings to all from Greg & Donna and all our Staff in Uganda!