Archive for April, 2010

Thank you to everyone who has been praying for me the past few days. I am well physically as I’ve now passed the 10 day mark of when Malaria would have shown up. To God be the glory that I am not sick even though I had over 200 mosquito bites! Thank you as well for the prayers in my being strengthened emotionally after the sadness of Rodgers death and the senseless act of violence against Gloria.

Gloria is still in the hospital recovering from her attack. Her little 4 year old body has a long road of recovery ahead. Her test results were positive and she has been infected with Aids from her attacker.

Today for the first time since her attack, I was able to pray for the soul of the man who did this to her. I know my delay in praying for him does not indicate spiritual maturity, but I’m just being honest, I could not pray for him until today.

Today I began to pray that through these circumstances this man will come to know Jesus as his Savior. After I was able to pray for him, it occurred to me, what if God ask me to be the one to share the gospel with him. Could I, .would I, the answer is I simply don’t know. I would want to be obedient and do what God ask of me, but I truly don’t know if I could do it.

So many of you have responded with an outpouring of love for Gloria. Gloria is one of the orphans here in Busia. She is being cared for by her uncle since her parents death. Her attacker was a man who lived in her village that she knew and had no reason to be afraid of. Her attacker is still a free man, the authorities know who he is, but cannot arrest him until documents from the hospital can be obtained.

I did not find out until today that it cost about $100 to process the documentation and the uncle does not have the money. He had to decide between spending what money he had on getting Gloria medical care or having the man arrested.

Trust me I know what is going through your mind. This isn’t right, but this is life here be it right or wrong. As soon as I learned why the man wasn’t being arrested, I agreed to pay for the documents they needed to do so. Once again, if it were not for those of you who have made it possible for me to be here, I would not be able to help Gloria. Thank you for helping me be the hands and feet of Jesus in her life.

Her injuries were so severe she was moved to a larger hospital that is far away. Today I was blessed to travel to a city much bigger than Busia and I went in search for a toy I could send her. On the back isle in the store I found a wonderful stuffed bear! I’m sure Gloria has never had a real toy because most of the children here have never had a real toy.

Gloria’s Bear

Tomorrow I will be meeting with the uncle and sending the bear along with him back to the hospital and also sending the money he needs to pay for the documentation the police need to arrest her attacker.

I would love to think she could come home from the hospital and come live with me. Just like Sunday before last when one of the church members brought a baby less than 2 years old to the service asking if anyone knew the baby. It was found wandering and no one knows who the child belonged to or what happened to whoever was caring for it. Unless one of the church members keeps it, there is nowhere for this baby to go. The church members are already caring for more children in their homes than they can feed, yet they continue to take them. The Pastor and his wife have 6 orphans in their home along with their own children. They are leading by example.

On our trip today I learned about some food here I had not seen before. I could see children out in the gullies digging but I didn’t have any idea what for. It was obvious these were very poor children so naturally I wanted to know what they were doing.

Termites/White Ants

This is a picture of the termites also called white ants they were gathering in their cups to eat.

Also here is a picture of some orphan boys proudly displaying their food.

Orphan Boys and Termites/White Ants

This was their meal for the day.

What have you eaten today?

Love to all.

(Parents please read this post before allowing your children to read it)

As you can imagine the past two days have been emotional for me. Having to say good bye to Rodgers and following through until he was buried. I learned that he had just asked for some porridge and when they came back with the porridge, he was dead. It didn’t seem apparent that he struggled at all. I am thankful because it seems even Rodgers didn’t know death was upon him. Thank you Father God in heaven for taking him unaware.

Here in Uganda there are no funeral homes or anything like we have back in the states. If a family has money a body can be preserved for a couple of days, but for deaths like Rodgers where there is no money to preserve the body, the burial is done quickly. Rodgers died at 8:00pm on Sunday night and he was buried yesterday before dark. Not even 24 hours passed from his death to his burial.

All during the day yesterday I was trying to prepare myself for the funeral, not knowing the customs and culture here. He was going to be buried in the village where his father was buried. This village was a long way from here, so a truck had to be arranged to bring the body.

I continued to think I was prepared for whatever lay ahead when we reached the destination. Yet, nothing could have prepared me for when they lifted his body out of the bed of the truck. He was wrapped in the new blanket I bought him and the mattress I bought him was his casket. At that point I had to totally trust the Lord to get me through the rest of the funeral as I realized he was not going to be put in a box. He was going to be put directly in the ground and the things I had given him were the only protection.

We walked about a mile or so back into the bush. Beautiful lush green valleys and mountain ranges. His grave had been dug in the middle of a cornfield with green beans growing under the corn stalks. I though how ironic that Rodgers had lived most his life hungry and yet he was buried in a place bountiful of food.

Although the day left me drained emotionally, I rejoiced as the gospel was shared. I know God works in mysterious ways and although we did not see evidence of the gospel being accepted, I believe God used Rodgers death in a mighty way. Now it’s time to press on and help those who are still here.

There is a little girl named Gloria who is 4 years old who is now in the hospital recovering from a brutal attack from a 34 year old man with Aids who raped her after being told by a witch doctor that if he had sex with a small child, he would be cured of Aids. She was injured severely and has a long road ahead of her not only in recovering physically, but emotionally. She will now live life in fear of Aids taking her life.

Gloria is one of many children who have been violated at the commands of these evil witch doctors. Gloria is not an exception, this is common practice here. Child sacrifice here is rampant. Children are not only violated like Gloria, but they are killed in various ways as a sacrifice for the evil practices here.

Please join me in praying for our children to be protected. Most of them have no parents looking after them so child abduction is often gone unnoticed until the body of the child is found. Please be in prayer for Gloria. She needs us interceding for her.

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – East Africa


Today is Rodgers first day in heaven. Today Rodgers received ultimate healing from the Great Physician. For the first time in his life, Rodgers isn’t living in poverty. He is no longer alone or hungry or cold. There won’t be an obituary written for Rodgers. He won’t be buried in a place with a headstone telling his name and his 18 year life span. For the most part, Rodgers won’t be remembered. But there is a place Rodgers will always be remembered. His memory and his incredible smile will remain in a special place in my heart and some day we will be reunited in heaven.

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – East Africa

It appears that in our efforts on Saturday to rid the mattresses and bedrails with termites that we somehow allowed mosquitoes to take their place. I woke up Sunday morning with a couple of hundred bites on me. More than 50 on my face and the rest were scattered all over me. I truly look like a life size human connect the dots puzzle. I have been wondering if I took a marker and connected all of them, what might be the finished piece of artwork!

I’m sharing this to give God glory because as you all know getting Malaria from mosquitoe bites was one of the things I had to prepare myself for here because I couldn’t take the preventative medicine for the extended time I am going to be here! Here I sit covered in bites and there is no sickness in me! They don’t even itch! God allowed me to get bitten, but not by the ones who cause Malaria! I am truly Praising Him for His goodness to me!

Yesterday I found a chemically treated mosquitoe net for my bed. The previous 2 nights I had been trying to sleep under my sheet, because the market was closed where I could get netting! Last night I slept sooooo good! I could still hear them buzzing around me, but they couldn’t get to me!

Had a great visit with Rodgers. As you can see from the picture I was able to take him a mattress, a blanket and some food. If you look down at his feet, you can see how swelled he is. My next task is to find him some bigger shoes and some pants that fit. He only has one shirt so hopefully I can find him something warmer. It is very damp and cool sleeping inside the hut for him. With him being so critically ill he gets even colder.

A very happy Rodgers! A mattress, a blanket and some food!

The people who live around him have already begun to gather the sticks to build him a small hut right beside theirs. The church is going to work on getting the grass and the nails needed as well as supplying some labor to get him a place of his own built. The hut he is now staying in has a hole right in the top of it and just the past two days alone, the mission house here where I live experienced water coming in under the doors with the heavy rains that are here. I am concerned that he is wet and cold, but I have peace knowing he isn’t hungry this week or sleeping on the ground with no covers like he did last week.

Thank you to everyone who is helping to support me financially. Because you gave to me, I was able to give to Rodgers. It took all of us to make a difference in his life. Rodgers won’t have the opportunity to personally tell you thank you from here on earth, but someday when we are all living in our heavenly home, he will look you up and tell you thank you! From Rodgers and me both, we are thankful for you.

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – East Africa

Funny Story

I hope this comes across as funny as it was! It may be one of those stories that you just had to be there to really understand how funny it was.

Edith, Celestine (the nurse) and I were headed out on bicycles to check on a sick child. Edith and Celestine were on their bicycles and I was on the back of a boda boda (bicycle with driver). We had gone just a little ways and were right in the middle of the busiest intersection here. As we pulled out onto the major road, we were separated by traffic. My driver had been leading the way and I had no reason to worry until I kept seeing him glance back. Eventually I turned around and looked and there was no sign of Edith or Celestine.

We continued to go forward and I still didn’t see them so I asked the driver to stop and wait for them. We waited for a few minutes and I still couldn’t see them so I asked the driver to turn back hoping we would meet them at some point.

In the meantime, poor Edith and Celestine had gone into a panic because they couldn’t find me. They had gotten separated from us just before we went into the main intersection and in their panic they didn’t know which direction the driver took me. They began frantically asking everyone have you seen a muzungu (a white person)have you seen a muzungu? Of course since I am the only white person here, I am easy to spot and people were telling them, yes we saw a muzungu on the back of a boda boda and the driver was driving very fast! Well, that didn’t help the situation at all; they thought for sure this boda boda driver was speeding off to cause me harm.

Eventually they decided to ride on out in the direction we were headed and we found each other. Edith jumped off her bicycle! She shouted, Joy you get off that bicycle and then she let the driver have it verbally! He was in total shock!  She took some coins out of her purse and put them in his hand and she continued yelling at him until he drove away. When he pulled away she looked at me and said, I could have slapped him!

She got me another driver and we continued on our journey laughing so hard! When she starting telling me about asking everyone have you seen a muzungu, have you seen a muzungu I couldn’t stop laughing. Then she told me all she could think about was how in the world was she going to explain losing me! So for all of you who have been worried about my safety never fear Edith is here!

It is different for me here in regards to safety. It seems all of the people here live in some sort of fear and they are struggling understanding that I don’t require a guard with a gun or a guard dog. The compound where I live is a solid cement wall with razor wiring all around the top. The only way in is to put a ladder up and climb over. But then you can’t get in the house because the doors and windows have bars and the doors have strong locks.

I told them even if someone came over the wiring, they can’t get to me. And I would have to go outside where they are to unlock the gate for someone to come inside and help so there is just no reason to be afraid. Dogs bark at everything and I would never know if the dog was barking at something good or something bad. Since I can’t go outside to let someone in to help me without putting myself with the person wanting to cause harm, I choose to not be afraid and enjoy the home God has given me to live in.

Hopefully one of the things I can teach the women here is dependence on God when they are afraid. I know that I will never live in the fear they live in because they have told me I am a muzungu and muzungu’s have people watching out for them because they know we are here to help. Yet, in Gods eyes we are all the same and His protection is the same for all of us.

This is just one of the things I hope to help them learn. Tomorrow I am starting a challenge with the leadership staff at the school. I am challenging them to learn the New Testament books of the bible in order this week, and in return I am committing to learning the New Testament books in Kiswahili in order.

Hopefully I can continue to find ways of challenging them that in return challenges me. Down the road I want to learn the Romans road in Kiswahili and I think this is something we could do together. I have to remember that they’ve not had the exposure most all of us have had to learning specific things about the Word, like memorizing the books in order. Most of them have never heard the bible stories we were told growing up. They’ve not had VBS or any other type of training like we are blessed with back home. Most of them if they have a copy of the Bible, it is the New Testament so they don’t have access to reading the Bible stories in the Old Testament that we love. I am so excited to go back and revisit the stories of Jonah and Noah and David and Goliath and so many other wonderful stories.

So with this said, I am starting from the beginning with the most basic applications and stories and we will all grow together. It’s an exciting time for me because for a very long time I have wanted to teach others how to grow in their relationship with God. I have not been given the gift of teaching the Word, yet, I can share my walk and what I have learned and hope that it makes a difference in their lives as we study and learn the Word together.

I’m excited about ALL God is doing within our lives here!  I will let you know how the studying the Kiswahili books in order is coming!

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary –  East Africa

Mase, her Mom and me

This is a picture of 6 year old Mase and her Mom. 10 days ago we visited her after we were told she had an injured leg. We found her lying on a dirty mat on the ground under a tree. She had broken her leg a few weeks back and it wasn’t put into a cast until a couple of weeks before we arrived. It was placed in a cast after she developed two sores that were not healing. It was not clear at all if Mase would be able to keep her leg. I called my home church, Blackshear Place Baptist and the prayer need was sent out and God’s children begin to pray.

I took this picture of Mase today when I went back to check on her! Her leg is healing! I want to say a big thank you to my home church for their prayers…without a doubt, they were answered.

Now a new prayer request. I took this picture just before I left the orphan school this evening. I know it is graphic, but it is the real world here. This is a sore on the leg of one of our 12 year old girls whose name is Emilly. She is at school every day, hobbling around on it, but it is so evident with every step she is hurting.

Emilly’s Leg

This started out as a small sore and as you can see has turned into a major infection. She didn’t come and show the nurse until several days after it had became infected, so the infection had a huge start before treatment began. I tell you the truth, these children here are tough children. I watched Emilly yesterday and today as the nurse cleaned and changed the bandage. The tears rolled down her face and she kept trying to push the nurse away because it hurt so badly, but she never screamed out. Please join me in asking our Heavenly Father to heal her leg quickly. This is such a large wound and everything here is so unclean.

I can’t help but think how many children have I passed by in the same shape these two little girls are in. Not intentionally passed by, but how many children here are suffering that I just haven’t seen. The needs here are great and the workers are so few.

Once again I want to encourage you to prayerfully consider coming with one of teams scheduled to come this year. Pastor Kevin Ross of my home church is leading a team coming over in July. He has been here before and can answer any questions you might have. You can reach him at 770-534-7058.

It seems so petty and selfish for me to add this prayer need as well, but I believe God cares about ALL of of His children’s needs. Today is day 7 with no running water or inside bathroom. In comparsion to Mase and Emilly this is soooo not as important. However, while you’re praying for them it would make me happy to know you are also praying for the water to begin here again!

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – East Africa

I am praising the Lord that I finally have internet! I should be able to connect daily now! My day is coming to a close and I’m just about too tired to blog, however, I have been waiting for two weeks to have internet and today so many wonderful things happened, I must write.

I want to share with you about 5 people who impacted my life today. The first person is my friend Edith. She is much like a social worker here at the orphan school; she knows all the orphans and their history. She and I worked together while I was here last year, and now we are working together even more. She spent the day with me today and accompanied me on some home visits as well as walked me through Busia and helped me find my way around. I will close this blog with more information about her and our day.

Edith and me

Two other people I want to share about is a elderly Grandmother who cares for 4 of her young grandsons, one of whom has aids, as well as the Mother of another child with aids. It was this horrible disease that prompted our visit today.

The Grandmother and me

Mother, daughter and me

While we’re visiting in the second home, the guardian of one of our kindergarten students saw us and showed us the little boy who has a bad infected tooth. It was obvious that he was in so much pain from it. It cost 5000 shillings for this little boy to have the tooth out, but no one in the family has the money. 5000 shillings is $2.50. We were on our way to visit our most critical person, so the school nurse couldn’t turn loose and take the boy. However, tomorrow I am sending the money with her to get him some help. I know that I can’t help everyone because I have to have money to live on, but I am positive that God will provide for my needs as I share what has been provided for me.

The next person is a boy 18 years old who is dying. When I first arrived and attended my first church service, within minutes of my entering the service Rodgers caught my eye. The first thing I noticed was his smile, it was radiant. As the service continued I began to see that something was wrong with Rodgers because he was very swelled. When the altar call was given, I watched him try to walk through the crowd that was in the church to get to the altar. Watching him then made it more apparent that something was wrong.

Rodgers is an orphan and hasn’t had parents for a long time. In the past few years that he has been sick, the person he was staying with never really thought he was sick. They always wanted him to go get a job and help even though he could barely walk. When he learned unless the Lord intervened he would lose his life, I thought my heart was going to break into. You could hear his sobs as the reality of his critical condition became clear to him. The most difficult part of learning this news was that he didn’t have anyone to stand with him. I knew at the moment the Lord had sent Rodgers into my life because I will do everything I can to be standing with him.

Rodgers and me

Today, Rodgers was on my visit list. When we arrived where he has been staying we learned that he had moved to live with another family member on Saturday. For a few minutes as Edith was learning the circumstances of where he had gone, I was so afraid that he had moved where I wouldn’t see him again. Then we learned that he been moved several miles away and so we began our journey to find him.

Edith, the school nurse and I started out on our journey with the two of them on their bicycles and I was on the back of a bora bora (a bicycle with a driver). As we were going down the major road in Busia that connects less than a mile from the Kenya border, I realized something very important. I am okay riding my bicycle from the mission house to the school, but it is so worth the small change it takes to have a driver for that main road! When we had passed through the middle of the second set of two big tanker trucks that made my decision clear! We traveled several miles and many times the big trucks came flying by and I could have reached the sides of them from the back of the bicycle! I think it’s a great blessing here that the bora bora drivers sit high on their bicycles in front of you because you can’t see what is coming straight at you!

Leaving the main road we headed into the bush to find where Rodgers is now living. The path was overgrown and at one point our bicycle actually wrecked. Eventually we gave up and began walking, pushing the bicycles. My heart was overjoyed when we found the hut where Rodgers now lives. He was sitting outside under a tree when we pulled up. The look on his face was priceless when he saw that we had come to find him.

He looked better than he had on Saturday when I saw him. The medicines given him were helping with the swelling of everywhere but his legs and feet, both of which were still swelled terribly. In our visit with him we learned that he is now staying there with an Aunt.

As you can tell from the picture of the hut they live in, he has nothing. Not even a mattress to lie down on. Just as we were leaving he told us he didn’t have any food as is so common here. Once again my heart was breaking. Here is this incredible kid with a contagious smile and the gentlest spirit about him who has lost his parents and is dying in a hut on the ground with no food to eat. Now he is not accessible to me on the daily basis I had planned on because of the distance away as well as the location of his hut. I gave him what food I had in my backpack and that will sustain him tonight and hopefully tomorrow God will provide not only the food he needs, but the transportation to get it to him.

Rodgers Hut

Okay, I know this is a long post but I’ve one more person to share about. I want to tell you about my bicycle driver whose name is Idi. In the long drive we had out to visit Rodgers, Idi in his broken English began to tell him about being a Christian. I responded to what he had said and told him how thankful I was to hear he was a Christian. I loved what he said next, he said very boldly, I am a born again Christian. I began to try to recall when was the last time I said more than I am a Christian. When was the last time I showed the boldness Idi showed today that clarified what being a Christian was to him. How ashamed I became when I realized it had been too long.

On our way back after our visit, I learned more about Idi. He was born into a Muslim family and was rejected when he became a born again Christian. He talked about how hard it had been for him because he was a teenager when he surrendered his life to the Lord. It was awesome to hear him give God glory and honor for getting him through those first tough years on his own without his family.


As I first mentioned, I am so tired and the heat has taken a toll on me physically being outside all day, but I will lay my head down on my pillow in just a few minutes knowing that I helped make a difference in the lives of the people whose own lives impacted mine today.  I am honored that God picked me to come here. I love being His girl.

Now back to my friend Edith who walked every step of the way today with me. As she and I parted ways at the end of the day, I came back here to the mission house where there is running water, (well normally there should be running water, but today is the fourth day with no running water and no inside bathroom.) And I also have electricity. Edith went home to a different life in her hut. She still had to ride her bicycle several miles back home, get her water jugs and walk to get their daily water supply. She had to cook supper over an open fire for her own two children as well as the three orphans she cares for. Now that it is dark, her only light source is a single candle.

Here I sit although wishing I could take a shower and use the inside toilet, finding myself very blessed. I sit here with lights overhead, cold water in the refrigerator and electric fans keeping me cool. Although our lives are different, I know that Edith will also go to sleep tonight feeling just as elated as I feel that we were able to help others today. I pray God will bless Edith in a special way.

I want to encourage everyone who reads my blogs to prayerfully consider coming here with one of our teams this year. We need help here and I can promise that you will never be the same once you’ve given of yourself to help our children here. My home church, Blackshear Place Baptist Church back in Flowery Branch Georgia is bringing a team in July.

Oh, I forgot to mention that on the way back from visiting Rodgers, a bracket on the front of Idi’s bicycle broke. He had to get me another driver. The new driver and I had gone maybe a quarter of a mile and he hit a rock and the tire busted! So, I walked the rest of the way…about 2 miles! I guess this is my new normal…. all in a day’s work as a missionary~

I now have a new mailing address for here. Support should continue to be sent to the PO Box listed on my support page, but this address here can be used to send letters, etc.

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – Uganda

It’s hard to believe I’ve already been in Busia for a week and a half. The hours and days have flown by as I’ve begun to get settled into my new home here. I haven’t had access to internet to be able to keep the blog updated, so as you can imagine I have so much to share. It is truly difficult to pick what parts I want to share first, as I only have a short opportunity of time today to get a message posted.

My arrival was safe and without incident. My entire luggage including all of the food arrived safely. Thank you to everyone who was praying for the luggage with food to not be confiscated in customs. It was an amazing thing because at neither point that I traveled through was any of my luggage opened! A totally different experience than when I first arrived and went through customs. We serve a Mighty God who cares about what we care about. Dont get me wrong, I know that God would have provided what I needed even if the food had been confiscated, but He knew it was important to me to have some nutritious things here as I get settled in and find what foods I am able to eat here.

The place where I am staying is a newer building and although there is no kitchen, there is a sink to wash dishes and the bathroom has a shower with hot and cold water. Of course there are days like today when there is no water, but today is the first day since we’ve been here that there hasn’t been water.

The shower here is much different. The shower is not a separate part of the bathroom; it is all one small room. When you take a shower, everything in the bathroom gets wet! I don’t mind though, because I am one of very few here who have a shower or running water at all.

It’s a secure place with a solid wall built around the boundary of the property and all the way around the top is razor wire. Sometimes I get tickled because from the window in my bedroom all you can see is the wall and the razor wire. So, I am looking through bars out at a security wall with razor wiring and I have to remind myself that these things are in place to keep bad people out. Back home the only places with bars on the windows and security walls with razor wire are places to keep bad people in! There is a tree on the other side of the wall from my bedroom so there are many birds around all the time. They land on the wall in between the razor wiring and it makes me forget the wiring is even there!

It is so important to convey what a blessing it is to have such a place to stay here. To be able to live in a good building with running water and electricity is a gift from God. In the beginning when I first surrendered to come to Uganda I had no idea what type of place I would be residing in. I read about so many of our missionary’s today and how they live and I was prepared for the worst, however, God in His goodness has placed me in a wonderful place to call home here.

I have so much more to share, many great stories already about the children here, but my time just now is limited. Just know that God is working all around me and in the days to come you will hear of ALL He is doing. I hope to soon have more internet connectivity where I can get updates more often. Until then, know that I love each of you and am thankful for the prayers and support that makes my being here possible.

Love to all,

Joy Breedlove

Missionary – East Africa