AT 12:30 PM
Thursday our 23-year-old driver Saloum was on his
way back home from school after having picked up 14 children
between the ages of 3 and 17 from two different
schools. He was not far from home, on a long, straight, paved road
where you drive pretty fast, when one of the bus's wheels suddenly
came loose and came off. Witnesses say that Saloum
tried hard (and succeeded) at not hitting any pedestrians but he
hit an electricity pole head-on at full speed.
these little African buses have wooden benches
along the walls in the back and no signs of seat belts. From the
first report I got it seemed that Saloum was injured severly; thankfully
the blood everyway betrayed the severity of his injuries. He had
to be sown up but it seems that it was just an
outward injury on his forehead (and his foot). It's a miracle
he was not injured more or even killed!
say that Saloum acted bravely. The windshield was
totally shattered; Saloum couldn't get out but was passing
the children through the windshield to the firemen that
had already arrived. Ambulances then took all the children to a
nearby hospital and also removed Saloum. By then
Paul had arrived at the scene. The firemen also had to put out a
fire that had started to burn near the battery.
later told me that he had gotten into the bus with
the children as he wanted to talk to one of the school directors
about our tuition payments that we have been struggling to make.
Then he changed his mind and got back off the bus. I had shivers
running down my spine at the thought that he could have been in
the wreck, and the implications thereof!
at the hospital, the first thing they do is give you a list
of supplies to buy at the pharmacy before they start taking
care of anybody. That's when the expenses started. I had just told
Paul a day or two before that he needed to stop withdrawing
with any of our cards for now as there was no more money. So he
contacted some friends to borrow money to pay the hospital.
picture shows only 12 of the 14 children (plus driver)
were in the bus - 12 boys and 2 girls.
spent the rest of the day at hospital, having to take them to a
big hospital downtown for the x-rays they all got.
They thought Youssouf (13) might have a broken
thigh bone which turned out not to be true. Amadou
(14) re-broke his arm where it had been broken before, and both
Yacouba (14) and Karim (17) also
have broken arms. All the children have wounds
and are hurting all over. I was glad to hear that
they were all able to return home late Thursday
hospital bills so far are about $1000 or 700€.
The electricity company wanted another $1000 to
repair their pole but thankfully our car insurance is covering that
Fees for all the police had to do are about $250
a few thousand dollars/euros short because of the beginning
of the school year and just a handful of donations to help with
that, this makes our bad financial situation worse.
And there are certainly more bills coming.
mechanic is going to look at our little bus but
I'm not very confident that this 20+ year-old bus is repairable,
and if it is, it will probably be way too costly.
hope that most children can go back to school on Monday; they'll
be back on the back of our pick-up truck. Our little
bus had only been in operation for two weeks since
our driver had to first get a third driver's licence to be allowed
to drive it, and we had the bus repaired just in
time for the beginning of the school year.
so thankful for God's amazing protection of our
children, of our driver, and for keeping Paul out of the wreck.
I'm thankful that God answered my prayers to give Paul peace
and a sense of His presence in the midst of all
this. It's great to hear that Paul is actually of good cheer if
tired. Please keep praying for him and the children.
can't wait to return a week from now, and apply
all the knowledge God has given me about essential oils
this past half year, because I know that He's going to use them
to heal their bodies and remove their pain (through the Raindrop
Technique that applies oil straight to the back).
also rejoice about all God has been doing this season and that the
enemy trembles at what lies ahead, trying everything
to keep us from entering this next new level. And
I'm still going to send you the awesome report that would have come
had the accident not happened; it will just be a few days later.
glory to our wonderful heavenly Father!
Expenses - So far we've spent 4200€ ($5,800)
on school fees and supplies; money we don't have.
We still have to pay the government fee for the
14 kids that had to transfer because of the school closure, as
well as all the school uniforms, which is 1100€
- These past 2-3 weeks there has been quite a bit of
unrest and problems in the north of Mali again.
The French are now staying longer than planned. Also, the coup
leader was nominated special advisor to the president.
at YWAM - Joseph's disciple school in Dakar
starts January 13th and lasts 6 months. He's
been an invaluable help to Paul in the midst of this week's crisis.
& Timbuktu - We've now been praying for a while specifically
for those two towns to start centers there. We're
praying for God to send us the right Western leaders to head them
up. It looks like Joseph will be the indigenous leader at one
- When I get back to Mali next week, the TV crew
doing a documentary about us will start shooting. They
also have it on their hearts to intervene on behalf of us at the
government so we get financial support.
in France - I've just spent 10 days ministering in France
and was blown away by the way God is moving there!
It reminded me of the renewal days in the 90's. Awesome God! More
- We always need volunteers in Mali who can stay a few
months or more. If you'd like to come help us, please contact
you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass
through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk
through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set
you ablaze. (Isa
the Faithful One,