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-anuaxy 31 1983

Dear friends in Christ,

Greetings once again from Kenya, It is good to be back. The
first shortage we encou^teired the absence of aerograms, I
finally was, able to br^'some tod^. . - ^
Our trip'to Kenya was very smooth and\^eventful.-' We had a won
derful-time'with friends'arid "family on the-E^t Coast, and had a
great "time at Disney World with'my parents-* We Were tired when We
arrived in'Nairobi, but were very happy that all of our lugga^ ar
rived with us, and that wc had no problems with customs,
Our first we^ in Kenya was,.spent moving^, .Ha^Itons rhad foupd
three houses in Kitale torrent which are nextodoor to each other. We
decided to move before we unpacked our^svdteases. Moving out,of a
house in which we had packed everything away-before furlou^ (and
couldn't remember where we had put things) into another house, while
suffering from jet lag, was not an experience that we are eager to re
peat soon. We are finally getting settled in this week. Our "new"
home is an old two-story house that has several electrical and plumb
ing problems, which I am trying to repair.
As soon as we had everything moved to- the new house, we left for
Kiwawa, We were anxious to visit Kara Pokot and old friends. It was
exciting when we drove into Kiwawa. The--school childiren were all lined
up"and singing to greet us. It took quite a long time to shake every
body's hand. Our biggest surprise was the change that had taken place
at Kiwawa. The church building was finished. The new clinic building
was in operation. The doctor's house was completed, A large cement
block storeroom is under construction and two wells were pumping water
right at the station.
-We had a great Sunday service at Kiwawa, The building is a great
meeting place and we had 260 in attendance. I spent two days inspecting
new and proposed borehole sites with Dick, Tony, and Justin, I have
been asked tcJ.S^e over the business end of the borehole work when
Justin goes oi^^&uriou'gh next month.
We also drove -to Kasei, about 20 miles from Kiwawa, We inspected
the land at Kasei' (TCuh-SAY) that was given to the mission by the Pokot
elders. It is a good locationclose to a borehole, with great build
ing sites and land for a gairden. As soon as we have our feet on the
ground sigain, we wilL^gin working up in the Kasei area, . I
Iiinda was able tS^^pend some time working in the new clinic with
Dr. Banta. Late they made the five-hour round trip up-to the
District Hospital in Eap^i^uria to take a woman who needed to liave an
emergency cesarean We found out later that the baby, was .born
dead, and the mother the following day. The father .has been at
tending church, and wants to become a Christian, Please for ^ ; _y
this man auid his family in their grief.
Thank you for the prayers on our behalf. We have certajj^^^^,
the power of the Lord, ^
in His service,
Mike "Coxartney
March 9t 1983
Greetings from Kenya,
Fehriaary has "been a good month for the Lord. Over 40 people were
"baptized at Kiwawa. Several of the people were from one of the sat
ellite preaching points where pastor Elijah Yego is now working and liv
ing. It is good to see the name of Jesus spread farther and farther from
Kiwawa, Our mission team and some of the church leaders took turns with
the "baptizing. It was a very exciting time for all of us. Afterwards we
had a special communion service with I50 Christians present.
The same weekend we had the dedication service for the new church and
clinic buildings at Kiwawa. Both buildings have proved to be a blessing in
preaching the VJord and healing the sick.
The rains should come sometime this month. We are praying that the
rain will continue long enough to produce good crops. Last year the rains
were sporadic and the success of the crops was limited. Again this year
we have supplied some seed for planting. The mission has employed a na
tional man who has "been trained in agriculture. He. has "been able to choose
the ri^t kind of seed for each area and will "be able to instruct the
people in planting. Please pray for good rains Lnd a good harvest.
Linda and I took a load of seeds up to Kasei for the jpeople of that
area. Dr. Banta went with us and he and Linda held a mobile clinic for
several hours. While we were there we formalized our decision on our
house site. The people have agreed to begin working on a road to the site
and to "begin bringing poles for the house. This last week in Kitale I
have been trying to buy the needed building materials, I have found many
things to "be in short supply, I had hoped to have the house finished be
fore the rains, but I don't think that will "be possible now.
FEiOM LINDA,,. It has "been a busy month, and it is nice -to "be back in
Kenya where it is warm. The temperature in Kitale has been in the high
80's and low 90*s each day, and at Kiwawa it is over 100.
We set a record of sorts last month:eleven babies delivered between
3 a.m. and 3 p.m. one day. Mother.;and babies are all doing.fine now. It
was the first litter of our watchdog, Biee. The "Maternity Department"
at the clinic has also ijeen busy. Two women were brou^t in the same
afternoon who had "been hemorrhaging following childbirth. Dr. Banta was
away on a mobile clinic, so the national dresser and I had our hands full
for awhile. One of the women was in severe shock. It is wonderful to
have a doctor and clinic at Kiwawa now and be able to help people we could
not )iave helped in the past, because of lack of proper facilities. At
last report, "both mothers and babies were doing fine, but recuperating
slowly. Blood loss is serious for anyone, but especially in those who are
often already malnourished and anemic, such as the Pokot, .,
We appreciate your, continued prayers. Praise God for the. "continued ac
ceptance of Jesus Christ "by the Pokot prople. ' . .r
Mike and Linda Coiartney
>i.3- . . ,/ v:, f.'t'
V -S; - A:.. .
April 9, 1983
Greetings from the Courtneys in Kenya,
The mo^h of March seemed to go by very fast. We took the whole
and Kant to Mt. Elgon, a small game reserve
Close to Kitale, We had a very enjoyable day watching animals and
p cnicing on the mountain. God has created some very beautifiil areas in
Kenya, and Mt, Elgon is one of them,
"three trips to Kasei,
One day was for mobile clinic which kept Linda and the "dv *^sv fox
several hours (235 patients). I went up one Sunday for ch^en"services
M to have a meeting with the elders of the area. The people are an
xious for us to start living there and for us to build a clinic. Thev
Shelter for a temporary clinic build-
ing. There is stni a shortage of building materials in Kitale, especially
roofing, so we still haven't started on our house. The people at Kasei
have already brought all the poles we will need for boilding.
We also made another trip to Kasei to repair one of the borehole
pumps which was broken.
o+ weekend of the 26th and 27th was our special Easter celebration
^ ^ "Sali (ccmmeal mush), and
Tte ^ the occasion.
+v!= people who came to know Christ during
fetiiSv M Ftiday night the people saw a movie about America and
urday night we watched a special movie on the Resurrection. The
weekend was topped off hy a great church service on Sunday morning.
The r^ns have started in the highlands around Kitale, but there
have only teen a couple days of rain in Pokot. Most of the area is still
very dry The dryness has seemed to bring out the snakes and scorpions.
The people say they are looking for water. We have killed several
scorpions in the houses and saw four snakes, poisonous of course, in
,+K snakes was trapped dn the help of the doctor's
outhouse, I didn t know that so many people cbtad-get inside of one
outhouse ^ throw rocks down the hole with such vehemence! Needless
xo say, the snake is no longer a nuisance.
t visitor from the States this month,. Dr.
toker Small is a professor and scientist from the University of Florida
Medxc^ School. He has been doing research on a new method of admin-
ister^g measles vaccineby mist which the child then breathes, rather
ffii injection. In developing countries such as Kenya, measles is
Government medical statistitians estimate that about 20^ of
result of measles.
? xf"? the..%ge. at which
method of administering the vaccine is nd^^^ffeotive.
rr,*' nay ^ possible to administer the-draccine
effectively to children as young as two months, and therete: daye.m^y,
wf+M ^ participating in a testing progrji {to begin.
itMn the next few months. ^Another news item-ri-r^ 'We^currently,
in Kara Pokot, are suffering the largest polio epidemid-to" havewstruck ^
Kenya in several years. Please pray for the children.' "
Mike and Linda Courtney v.
"7b Reach a Hidden People''
FORWARDING AGENTS: Rich &Mary Ann Jenks / P.O. Box 2053 / Salem, OR 97308/ (503) 394-3958
FIELD ADDRESS: Mike &Linda Courtney / P.O. Box 900/ Kitale, Kenya
Vol. 5, No. 1 "
Things have changed so much in Kara Pokot since we left in March of 1982 for our fur
lough in the States. Arriving at Klwawa in January of this year, we found new buildings
a cement block girls' dormitory, a combination food storage-polytechnic-shop building, a
clinic, a doctor's house, and additional staff housing.
The work is booming. We also had new people added to the missionary staff. Dr.
Harry and Lillian Schaefer joined the work to head up the Leadership Training Program!
Dr. Larry and Ellen Banta came to oversee the medical work, Jim and Kathy Tierney from
Redmond, Oregon joined us just two weeks ago to work in the polytechnic and well-drilling
ministries. As the work grows at Kiwawa and begins to be taken over by national Christian
leaders, we are branching out into other areas of Kara Pokot. Tony and Garolee Greener
from Hillsboro, Oregon have begun a new work in an area called Kamila. And we are going
to Kasei (kah-SAY).
Kasei is about 22 miles by road southeast of our main work at Kiwawa. Because it is
at a higher elevation (about 5,800 feet), it receivers more rainfall, and therefore has
better crops and better grazing land for cattle. Over the next few months we plan to con
struct a small house and clinic.
Since coming back to Kenya, we have made several trips to Kasei for mobile clinics
and to visit with the people. One day earlier this month Linda treated I30 people at
Kasei. There is much need in this areanot only among the people of Kasei, but also the
people living in the surrounding mountains, which are inaccessible except by helicopter.
These mountain people walk several miles to either Kiwawa or Kasei to bring their sick for
Mike baptizing a believer at Kiwawa.
May I9B3
FURLOUGH REPORT: We were in the States ten months,
traveled over 25,000 miles (which doesn't include
Mike's plane trip to Texas to interview Dr. Banta),
visited seven States, had over I30 speaking engage
ments between the twoof us, and gained 20 pounds
Photos by Jane Hamilton
Linda working in the new clinic.
As I sit at the typewriter this morning, I can see two lit
tle stripped green lizards playing tag on the front steps.
It is a^beautiful spring-like day here in Kenyaclear blue
sky, 76 green everywhere.
The rains started about three weeks ago, so we are basking
in cooler temperatures and the return of "green" to a land
scape that was all browns and greys.
Since coming back to Kenya, I have been able to spend much more time in
V , the medical work than during our previous termTrevor and Laura are older
and more independent now. The clinic has been busy with well over 1000
patients per month. One day earlier this month we treated over 400 people in a single day.
We are seeing all the usual thingsmalaria, colds, pneumonia. We have also had an epi
demic of dysentary which claimed many lives, particularly among the inaccessible mountain
people. Kara Pokot is currently suffering from the largest polio epidemic to have hit
Kenya in many years. So many things that we Americans take for grantedshelter, food,
good health, and medicines. Coming back to Kenya tends to strip us of those things which
are so much a part of life in America. It is easier in Kenya for us to remember the rea
son we were put on earth in the first placeto glorify the Lord, to use our God-given
abilities" to minister to others.
P.O. BOX 2053
/AVE Hi^ Hat
WE lA/Epe TO
A COvEpep pi^'H.
TM^we^ s-n
May 16, 1983
Dear Brothers and Sisters1 ,
Mike has left for Kara Pokot and put me in charge of writing the let
ter this month. He may regret this... First of all, I'm praising
the Lord "because the rains have started in Kara Pokot and all the snakes
and scoprions have crawled back into their holes and under their rocks!
This has "been an excitingand busymonth for us. Two new heli
copter pilots came out to operate the helicopter belonging to Helimission,
which means that wo can again reach the mountain people in Kara Pokot,
Our family enjoyed a 30-minute helicopter tour of the Kasei area where
we arc now working. I had never "before rcalissed how "big the moiintains of
Kara Pokot are, and the density of the population. I sang the song from
Isaiah 52j7 to myself during the trip"How lovely on the mountains are
the feet of him who "brings Good News, Good News, Announcing peace, pro
claiming news of happiness. Our God reigns!" I conducted a mobile clinic
at Kasei one day and treated over 13O people. Dr. Banta was on the
mountaintop of Karakol with a mobile clinic, ^ "between the two of us and
the clinic staff at Kiwawa, we treated over ^0 patients on that day.
Mike also met with the men at Kasei and they agreed to start build
ing a shade shelter to use as a temporary clinic and church. This morn
ing he left to spend the week in Kara Pokot taking all the building sup
plies up the mountain to Kasei for our house. We are about two months
behind schedule on this project "because of the shortage of building sup
plies, "but Praise the Lord, evejrything is ready now to start building.
The road to Keisei is veiry steep and cannot "be traversed by a truck, so
Mike will make about 12 loads with the Land Cruiser ^ trailer.
VJe had another ^dition to our field team this month. Jim and Kathy
Tierney arrived from'Redmond, Oregon. Kathy is a nurse, and Jim will be
working in establishing a polytechnic school at Kiwawa and working in the
well-drilling ministry. Jim and Kathy plan to attend Puget Sound College
of the Bible after their term in Kenya
More great news... Our shipment from the States has finally aarrived
in the port of Mom"basa. Trevor and Laura ran out of school materials a
few weeks ago and in ny opinion have been enjoying this forced vacation
just a little too much! We also have many other supplies and equipment
in the crates which we need. Mom and Dad got to tiake a-. ^secpi^ honeymoon
without the kids to Mombasa to clear the shipment through customs, (warm
Indian Ocean, white sandy beachesthis missionary business is^Tou^ ^
sometimes). The shijanent was cleared in record time--thMdcs^^^tp thp^^
that the Lord arranged for us to have an honest Christian clearlrig agent.
We expect the crates to arrive in Kitale by train sometime. tWs we^.
In addition to everything else, Mike and I were able 'to work on learn
ing langua^ culture this month. We found; cut that Hihe-Pokot tribe has
a "Peace Child" concept. When they declare peace with a nei^borl^ tribe,
a child with no physical imperfections is given to the other tribe seal
the truce, ' When we talk about God giving His Son so that, we ;mi^t have
Peace with Him, the Pokot know what we are talking atout. One morning in
devotions at the clinic the jevsuigelist asked several paacente Af they would
"be willing to give their sons as God had given His. Severed of rtiiem
broke down and wept and said they couldn't, they loved .their_/child^n too
much and it woiad be too hard. Something perfect, loved, and cherisl^
to seal an agreement. Thank you God for loving the people of.Kara Pokot.
> A
Brothers ,axid Sisters, "3"ua? 32, l9%3
Death is something that Is hard to handle no matter where we aeera to be.
When a friend or relative dies In the States, It Is difficult for us to
adjust because we don't have the opportunity to go through the "healing
process" of grieving with others who knew that person. We can't attend
the funeral, there Is no one who can share an^l understand our tears and
disbelief. When the deathoccurs here In Kon^i it Is equally hard bo-
causo we cannot share our grief with the loved ones ^f the deceased Iti
the States, Wo don't havo the opportunity to .share with those at home
how our lives -were hlessod by that person.
Last iSdday, at about 3i30 In the afternoon, Rick Oliver was killed in
a tragic helicopter accldont hero In Kenya, Wo first met Rick on April
9 when h arrived in Kltale to f\arther train a new pilot for Hellmlsslon,
Hellmisslon is a mission auxiliary organization created to aid mission
aries such as ourselves in reaching unreached people living In Isolated
areasI '^We' used the service of Helimlsslon to reach the people living in
tho inaccessible' arenas.of Kara Pokot with medical assistance ^ the Word
of God; Earlier this opiith," Ricic "took jme to-no of .those areas, Karakol,
to conduct a mobile clinic. Many people around ICarakol were suffering
from a fatal strain of dysontary. Rick helped me treat over 160 people
that day. Not only did he assist me, but he also shared the Love of God
with the Pokot people gathered on that remote mouhtalntop.
During Rick's time in Kenya he slept in the building next to us and took
most of his meals in our home. Rick became like a brother to us, a mem
ber of our immediate family. While we rejoice, knowing he is with the
Lord, yet we feel tjie personal, loss very deeply. Trevor and L^a loved
Rick very much and have' found^ this' t6 bo a-difficult doss tp; adjust to
in their, young lives. Rick always he'lpcd us in whatever way he could
even Washing dishes and cleaning the bathroom from time to time! I
find myself listening for his cheerful call as he comes throu^ the
house on his way to tho kitchen to see if the coffee pot is on.
Rick's parents livo in Milwaukio, Oregon. His two teenage daughters
live in Denver. Ho was planning to return to them this week.
More thto. anything else. Rick ..loved to share the Lord with others. One
of the men who flow with Rick on the day he was killed said the
time he saw Rick he was standing on a sandy riverbank, surrounded by
rPokot. His shirt was unbiittoned, flapping in the breeze. He was
ing being with the people God loved on a warm June day. He had finished
his job of transporting building supplies for some Lutheran missionaries
a day early and was anxious to get back home to Kitole. Instead, he went
to his Eternal Home.
I am sorry to have such gloomy news this month, but my heart is heavy
with the loss (even though I know it is not forever). The work at
Kasei is going very, very well, Mike is there today. He has taken with
him a young man who came from the States just two weeks ago to observe
'the work of Helimission. We spent'our first ni^t in; our 3-2?oom house
at Kasei last week. The walls are now mudded and thO^tin roof
Wo slept on tho dirt floor. This week the mud walls And floor will bo
comented, making a much "cleaner" house.
Please pray for the people at Kasei. And ospocially for those liv^g
at Karakol and other mountains like it. We had intended to .spend ^day
on Karakol and surrounding mountaintops, treating medical needs and
preaching the Word of Godin some places for the very first time. That
is not possible now, . .
'To Roach a tiiddon People'
Courtney Christian Mission
P.O. Box 2053
Salem, OR 97308 August 3i 1983 Kitale, Kenya
This has been a very full month and to give you all the details would
take several pages, so I've decided to make a list instead...
B Thank' you for your prayers and letters about the death of our heli-
^ft^ter pilot friend, Rick Oliver. Please continue to pray for Rick's
parents, who feel this loss very deeply.
As a direct result of Rick's life and ministry, Mike and I were privileged to baptize Rose
and Robin Salmon, a British couple who live in Kitale. Robin is the Headmaster of a prestigious
private school here in Kenya, and as such has an influence on the lives of the teenagers of many
important people in government and business.
e had several encounters with flooded rivers this monththe first during Mike' s attempt to
salvage the helicopter. The river had flooded and the helicopter was sitting in water. His job
was to help get it onto the back of a big truck, transport it to Kitale, and then get it off the
truck and onto the floor of the hangerwhat an experience! The winch on the Land Cruiser paid
for itself several times over this month.
Q) God provided much rain for Kara Pokot this month. Praise the Lord! I really can't complain
about transportation problems and flooded rivers when I know how much rain is needed for crops and
the very lives of the Pokot people. We had some excitement on our way to Kasei one trip when we
encountered a flooded and swiftly-running Kenyangarang River. We were on the south bank, with
several of our mission co-workers and some Catholic missionaries on the north bank. At the end
of the day, Mike had winched across five vehicles to the south shore, including our big mission
truck. It was a very ecumenical operationthe Catholic Father took a dip in the river (not on
purpose) when he and Mike were walking a cable through the flood waters.
P.O. Box 900
Kitale, Kenya
To keep myself busy while we waited to see if the river would go down (which it didn'tall
The Land Cruisers and Land Rovers got wet inside), I decided to read to Laura from her Children the Land Cruisers and Land Rovers got wet inside), I decided to read to Laura from her Children's
Living Bible (the one with all the nice pictures). We soon had a good-size crowd of Pokot child
ren and teenagers around us. Many of them understand English and the ones who don't had an in
terpreter. So, "Linda opened her mouth, and beginning with these pictures, told them the good
news of Jesus." Mike, looking across from the far bank, asked later what I was doingit looked
like preaching. I told him it was!
While riding his bike to a friend's house, Trevor, age eight, came in "close contact" with
The road, laying his knee open to the bone. It is healing well now, but he has a big, ugly sear.
The local doctor we had to take him to was not quite up to the standard of a U.S. plastic surgeon.
I just figure the scar will be a good "conversation piece" when he is older. He can regale people
with tales of his "heartless, calloused" parents who dragged him off to the wilds of Africa where
he couldn't have quality medical careI
;We had a wonderful three-day vacation at Lake Baringountil a snake crawled between the two
chairs Mike and I were sitting in and he had to kill it. They even follow us on vacation I don't
understand the attraction.
Speaking of snakes (and I wish I wasn't)... Mike says we must not have any snakes around our
ri^se at Kasei, because there are so many big rats. We laughed a few months ago when the local
village elders asked Mike to bring some rat poison because the big rats were killing their goats.
Mike is not laughing now. He has seen them in our house, which leads me to number nine...
The house at Kasei is finally finished, and we are looking forward to spending about three
^^eks a month there (when we are not in Kitale for mission meetings to buy supplies). We praise
God for the joy and satisfaction we find in His work at this time in our lives. I ^'Rf!f<sr+
To Reach a Hidden People'
Courtney Christian Mission
P.O. Box 2053
Salem, OR 97308
August 29, 1983
P.O. Box 900
Kitale, Kenya
Rain, rain, and more rain. I try not to complain "because
God has answered our prayers for rain. However, it sure is wet
around here. It is still a little early to see how much harvest
the Pokot people will have, but the people who are up in the hills
and others who were able to plant a second time should have good
crops. The grass is growing very well, much to the delight of
the cows (and their owners).
The Kenyangarang river has "been flowing constantly for
over two weeks and no one has "been able to get across. Several
other vehicles have been stuck and even damaged recently in the
river. We feel very fortunate that we were able to get across
and back to Kitale two weeks ago with friends from Nairobi.
The water was about three and a half feet deep, flowing swiftly,
and the sandy bottom was very soft.
This last week we heard serious rumors concerning-a retal
iation raid by the Karajnojong and Turkana tribes against the
Pokot. Kiwawa was named as one of the centers to be attacked.
The Pokot have had several successful raids recently because
of being heavily armed, and naturally their neighbors are be
coming very upset. Not being able to get across the river to
confirm the rumors, we have all been very concerned. However,
today one of our clinic workers came to Kitale after walking
out and said the rumors had been true, but a peace treaty has
been signed.
The Vacation Bible School which was scheduled for this
week at Kiwawa had to be cancelled because we can't get there,
but we will just reschedule it for sometime later.
We recently moved a young evangelist to Kasei and are
anxious to get back and work with him. The rains have slowed
everything down this month, but I have been able to do a lot
of the jobs I've been saving for a "rainy day."
'To Reach a Hiddei) i\
Courtney Cliristian Mission
P.O. Box 2053
Salem, OR 97308
Septeiii\,j, 1983
P.O. Box 900
Kitale, Kenya
Before coining to Kenyu, j often heard veteran missionaries from
Africa expound on the delighi,, Africa-the relaxed, "laid
back" lifestyle, the slow pace of living, etc. coming to Kenya nearly four
years ago, I have been wondering where those missionaries workedI would like to
apply to go there. There is not a thing even remotely resembling "laid back" about
our life here. Even during the extended rainy reason this year, when we were some
times unable to get into (or out of} Kara Pok|,. p^oe of life has not slowed
much. So many exoiting/unusual/horrible thinj..,, have happened this year, that I some
times wonder if our supporters at home are going to think we are making it all up!!
\ke was bitten on both hands by one of
the rest of the family and our watch-
'^eemed advisable that we all go through
-raising, frantic search for good
They will be reported in our quarterly
Throu^ it all, we are learning more
finding that government and medical
September has been no exception. On the 7th M
our dogs, which later died of rabies. Becausn
man had also been in contact with the dog, i1
the six-shot rabies series. Then began a hair
vaccine, I won't give you all the details nou
newsletter which should be published in Octobo
and more to put our trust in the Lord, We ai'n
authorities don't have all the answers.
We spent a wonderful, busy eight-day period i^^sei this month (after having the
trip postponed because of the rabies excitemem)^ j treated between 70 and 80
patients, mostly children, each day, Mike spni^-j^ mornings on long hikes into
the suirounding area and mountains, looking fvu.' villages and just generally scouting
out the "lay of the land. You can imagine tl\p surprise of many of the Pokot people
when they came upon a white person on a bush miles from the nearest "civilizationi"
The Kiwawa, Kamila, and Ghelopei churches had v>ver 30 baptisms in September, with over
20 decisions for Christ also being iii^e. We anxiously looking forward to the day
when we can report the same for Kasei.
There is no doubt about it, something about living in Africa is so much more exciting
than an average U.S. existence. Take our fimt Sunday this month at Kasei, for
instance. When was the last time you were by a big male baboon as you
walked home from church? (Preachers and rude brothers-in-law don't count). Did you
have to politely ask a poisonous snake to rein\)V0 itself from your dining room as
you prepared lunch after church? Living in Kenya is exciting, never dull, and
sometimes even frightening. But right now I wouldn't trade it for any other life.
God is teaching us so much through our constani, dependence on Him. We often feel
that we are the ones who benefit from this wopk^ more than the Pokot to whom we
Thank you for your love, your support, and eaptiQi^i 1y for your prayers! a ' Thank you for your love, your support, and eaptiQi^i 1y for your prayers! ^
Sep'Vembcr Report"
"To Reach a Hidden People"
FORWARDING AGENTS: Rich &Mary Ann jenks / P.O. Box 2053 / Salem, OR 97308 / (503) 585-039^
FIELD ADDRESS: Mike &Linda Courtney / P.O. Box900 / Kitale, Kenya
Vol. 5f No. 2 OctolDer 1983
Our small "ssifari house" at Kasei (kah-SAY) is finally finished and we are ahlie to
spend extended periods there now. Linda spends her mornings teaching Trevor and Laura, and
her afternoons tre^trhg^b^tweeir~5CPajiar90 ^tients'on eacTniay^fhat she holds-clinxc i
are looking forward to getting a Kenyan medical helper soon to ease her load a little.
riy days at Kasei so far have been spent in scouting out the area, taking long hikes in
to the valleys around Kasei, and onto Kaptilomo and Karakol mountains, looking for villages
and population centers. I occasionally come upon Pokots who are amazed to see a white face
so many miles out into the bush!
The church at Kasei has had a good start. We have now outgrown the little shade shel
ter we have been meeting in which doubles as a school during the week. We are looking for
ward to beginning work on a church building in the near future (only about $3000 for a
church building of poles and mud, plastered with cementdon't you wish they could be built
that inexpensively in the States!). Linda is anxious for the building so that she can hold
clinic on the porch. So far she has been using a rock under a thorn tree as her "office."
These past few months have been very busy. Besides all our usual work, we have had to
contend with flooded rivers, the bike accident in which Trevor split open his knee (now
nicely healed), and the death of Rick Oliver, our very good friend and Christian brother
who was tragically killed in a helicopter accident.
We were also recently confronted with a serious rabies incident (detailed below by
Linda). We are praising the Lord that our antibody levels are now satisfactory and we
should be immune to the disease. The only problem now is financial. We have already spent
over $400 on travel to Nairobi, and the U.S. Embassy wants $600 to cover the cost of the
vaccine we obtained from them.
The rains here axe never "normal," but have been more "unusual" than usual. It is
still raining, not only in the highlands around Kitale, but also sporadically in Kara Pokot.
Good crops should take care of the hunger problem this year. In fact, the crops on the
mountains around Ksisei have produced enough that the people are selling some of their maize..
They also come frequently bringing us gifts of maize, which we enjoy, even though it is
usually tough and chewy and has to be cooked for several hours!
April - Aug. 1983 We make several attempts to obtain rabies
vaccine for our new batch of puppies... none available, ex
cept vaccine that is already expired.
Sept. 6 We are finally able to get some vaccine. While vac
cinating one of our six-month-old puppies, Mike is severely
bitten on both hands. The- rest of the family has also had
contact with the dog.
The puppy is sick. Symptoms of rabies. A rabid dog passed throu^
our yard several weeks ago, harrassing our dogs. We lock up the puppy to
observe it. There is no reliable lab that can test for rabies in our area.
Sept. 8 Friends and co-workers iDecome concerned, Mike goes to the local hospitals to try
and obtain human rabies vaccine. After visiting three hospitals, one involving a late night
trip to Kapenguria, only three vials of vaccine are found (plus one which is out of date).
We need 30 vials. Late that night I give Mike his first injection.
Sept. 9 Mike leaves at 5 a.m. for the long drive to Nairobi to see if he can obtain more
vaccine. Trevor and Laura receive their first doses. Late that same night Mike arrives
from Nairobi, giving me my first injection. The government refuses to give us sufficient
vaccine, stating that they have decided that one-tenth the recommended dose is adequate.
They let us have only enough vaccine to fit their "recommendations."
Sept. 10 Concerned about the "unorthodox" procedure, we write to Mike's parents in Florida,
hoping that they can obtain accurate information from the U.S. Center for Disease Control
in Atlanta, Georgia. Sunday night the puppy dies. We have our second injection.
Sept. 17 We leave for ei^t wonderful, busy days in Kasei. Little do we know that Mike's
parents have been trying frantically to contact us by phone in Kitale. But we are sublim
ely unaware of the outside world. During this week a young U.S. Peace Corp worker dies in
Nairobiof rabies, even thou^ sh had been immunized.
Sept. 25 Back in Kitale, we receive a midnight telephone call. Mike and his mother in
Florida must shout to each other to be heard. All we can determine is that there is a let
ter coming for us, and the dosage of rabies vaccine we have been taking is not right. Our
fourth dose was on the 22nd at Kasei.
Sept. 27 We receive a letter stating that the U.S. Center for Disease Control does not
recommend the reduced dosagp that we had been told was all ri^t. Mike makes a call to a
U.S. physician working in a research lab in Nairobi. We find out about the death of the
Peace Corp worker, and are instructed to "get to Nairobi as soon an possible."
Sept. 28 After arriving in Nairobi, we contact both the U.S. Embassy and Dr. Timms, a
wonderful, jolly "grandfatherly"-type British pathologist working at Nairobi Hospital.
From Dr. Timms we learn that there hsis been a "problem" with at least one batch of rabies
vaccine imported from Francethe same batch we have been using.
Sept. 29 The U.S. Embassy puts throu^ a call for us to the Center for Disease Control in
Atlanta. The "world expert" on rabies will arrive in Nairobi on October 1. While in
Nairobi, we are able to have blood samples taken which are flown out on the Pan Am flight
from Nairobi to New York. They will be tested in Atlanta to determine if we have produced
any antibodies from the vaccine. It will take at least a week to get the results. The
C.D.C. recommends that we have three full doses of good vaccine (provided by the Embassy)
within the next week, then return to Nairobi after that time for more testing. In a way it
sounds like a horror story, and in another way it is like a comedy. With nearly four years
in Africa now, we have learned to trust in the Lord whatever happens.
Oct. 6 Today Mike called the doctor at the U.S. Embassy this morning. Good news! We have
^enou^ antibodies. Praise the~Lord! We are forever grateful to Tom and Fran Courtney; to
the members of our supporting church in Gainesville, Florida; to the people at the Univer
sity of Florida Medical School; and the U.S. Center for Disease Control. God has used them
againto save lives.
To Reach a Hidden People
Courtney Christian Mission
P.O. Box 2053
Salem, OR 97308
Novem"ber 9i 19^3
P.O. Box 900
Kitale, Kenya
October has been another typical-atypical African-type month. The work
at Kasei continues to progress. I have hired two "fundis" (builders) to con
struct some staff housing for the men who help us. The evangelist, medical
helper, teachers and the school children have all had to share the same small
building. For the first time we were able to get a large truck up the steep
road with most of the building supplies. This has saved me several trips up and
down with the trailer.
We have also hired a medical helper. We have been averaging about 90
patients per day so I'm glad that Linda now has some help. Daniel is also
able to continue administering some medicines even when we axe not there,
I recently took Daniel and hiked the steep path up Karakol Mountain to
treat any sick people that we might find. No one has been there since the
helicopter crashed in June, The people did not know we were coming and many
of them were off working in their "shambas" (farms) or trading their maize.
We still had 86 people for clinic. They also traded 200 lbs. of maize for
medicine. I finally got three men to agree to carry it down to Kasei for us.
It was a long, hard day and I wasn't anxious to do it all over right away,
but it was worth it just to see the happiness (and surprise) on the people's
Some of our older school boys have expressed a desire to become Christians,
so I've been studying with them. This is the first response we've had at Kasei,
One of our school teachers is a Christian, so he has been a good influence on
the children. The people of Kasei and the surrounding mountains are very
"traditional," It is going to be very interesting and at times, I know,
difficult, to watch and gauge the response of the people to the Gospel as we
continue to preach and work in the area.
The last of October, our co-workers. Dr. Harry & Lillie Schaefer, along
with two single missionary ladies visiting from Uganda were involved in a
serious automobile accident in the Samburu area in north central Kenya. Even
though the vehicle was totalled, they escaped serious injury, although they
are very bruised and sore. Dick, Tony, Jim and I took two vehicles to rescue
our injured friends and tow back to Kitale the wrecked vehicle. It was a long
two day drive and all of us were glad to see our own beds again.
Once again we had the opportunity to rejoice in God's care for us.
Earlier in the month we made our last "rabies run" to Nairobi and we praise
God that everything has worked out fine. I know that many of you uphold us
in your prayers all the time, and we appreciate it so much. Thank you. a
'To Reach a Hidden People"
FORWARDINGAGENTS: Rich &Mary Ann Jenks / P.O. Box 2053 / Salem, OR 97308 / (503)
FIELD ADDRESS: Mike &Linda Courtney / P.O. Box 900 / Kitale, Kenya
Vol. 5, No. 3
would fit in Grandpa Courtney's car.
The rainy season came in March, making trans
portation through flooded rivers difficult.
December 1983
iji ^
In January we arrived for our second term in Mike was privileged to assist with baptisms
Kenya. Laura didn't believe all that luggage at our central mission station, Kiwawa, in
Construction on our house at Kasei began in
April. Some of the building supplies were
delivered by air.
When it came time to mud our house in May, In June, Linda went by helicopter to the
we had plenty of help. "top of Karakol mountain to conduct a mobile
E3 f:
Throughout the year Mike participated in
Leadership Training Conferences designed to
equip the leaders in each of the local chur
ches for the Lord's work.
During an average day of clinic in September
Linda saw over 50 patients.
Linda spent part of November doing the usual
writing. She answers most of the overseas
correspondence, does the bookkeeping, pre
pares monthly activity reports, annual fin
ancial reports, and types the newsletter.
P. 0. BOX 2053
Because of the delay in receiving our ship
ment from the States, Trevor and Laura had
"summer" vacation in the spring, and had to
catch up in July and August,
In October, Mike began hiking into other
wise inaccessible valleys and mountains to
'reach~"fh~e" people living "in" "heavTly"~popuT-
ated areas surrounding Kasei.
December - Mike, Linda, Trevor (8 years),
Laura (6 years). We are grateful for the
prayer and"financial support we have re
ceived this year, and thank the Lord for
His care and love for us.
0. Box 2^27
Knoxville, Tenn 3790/: