Saturday was a low-activity day. Joseph needed to prepare for the evangelism event that night and Jim was still fighting off the effects of whatever virus caught him. Eventually Joseph came by and took him to his house where his wife Aimee administered a malaria test. To everyone’s great relief the test was negative for malaria, so they went to the hospital and got some antibiotics. Jim’s health has been steadily improving since he started taking them. Our biggest concern was to make sure his fever went away, as that could trigger a health screener to pull him off the flight as a precaution, fearing Ebola.
Interesting note: The United States has more confirmed cases of Ebola than Burkina Faso, which has yet to have even one. Says something about the wisdom of closing your borders to people from the areas of highest infection, which are still Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Liberia. All are on the coast of western Africa, and B.F. is shielded from them by a combination of Côté d’Ivoire (the Ivory Coast) to the southeast and Mali to the northeast.
About 50-75 people, mostly children, attended the outreach on Saturday night. The team begins playing worship music about an hour before the event as a way to stir up interest. Joseph is very canny about the ways of the people and knows that as he preaches through the loudspeaker, those who can’t come to the event in person out of fear of being seen associating with Christians are still listening in their homes.
If all this sounds a bit extreme, I actually saw a father come and pull his daughter out of the event. Joseph says he saw another one as well. There are actually some children of Muslim parents who attend the school, so for the Muslims here there is not a universal avoidance of all things Christian. It all depends on which mosque you attend, and there are many in the area to choose from.