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Living Well goes to Burundi

It is easy to light a fire and difficult to extinguish it. – BURUNDI PROVERB  

When you face certain death, you find comfort any place you are able. I'd avoided being hacked to pieces. The blow intended for my head had struck me in the chest. Though it stunned me and the taste of blood polluted my mouth, I was still conscious…. Across the way, a flaming eucalyptus branch fell from a hole in the roof. The odor of gasoline was now strong in the room, and in a flash of recognition, I saw that the Hutus had planned this all along…. All dead. All my classmates. We had been inside the building at six o'clock in the evening. In the first hour or so, most of us had died…. I looked up and saw more fire raining down on us. With nowhere to run, I burrowed my way underneath a smoking mound of bodies. – an excerpt from the story of one survivor of the genocide of Burundi .  

The killing corresponded to the same genocide made famous in the movie Hotel Rwanda , the difference – no movie was made about the tragedy in Burundi . This genocide didn't happen in the distant past, it started in 1993. Peace between the tribes wasn't established until 2005. Hundreds of thousands died; hundreds of thousands were displaced into refugee camps in Burundi and in other countries.

Prayer Requests for Ed and Donna Edwards, Alvin and Kim Bates

  • Good health for all
  • Safety in travel and while in Africa
  • Protection for family members at home, healing for Donna’s mother, Ruby Thalman
  • Lord will draw pastors and wives in Gitega province to fill the teaching venue
  • Lord will speak to each heart about their own marriage and bring change in their lives
  • Lord will give them hope, help to remain faithful to Him and what He wants, and healing from pain of tribal massacres
  • Each pastor and wife will model Christ and the church in their mar-riage
  • Each pastor and wife will teach many others God’s design for marriage
  • God will encourage A.L.A.R.M. staff through us
  • God will show us what He wants for further mission partnerships
  • God will raise the remaining funds for expenses
  • A quick adjustment to time changes after we get home


Travel to Burundi to teach a pastor’s & wives conference on marriage/ family, travel to Rwanda and Nairobi to meet with staff in regards to future missions

Foreign time Oklahoma City time Actitives
  Thurs, May 31, 12:55 pm Leave for Nairobi
Saturday, June 2, 5:00 am Friday, 9:00 pm Arrive Nairobi (Donna/Ed’s 34 wedding anniversary)
Sat, June 2, noon 4:00 am Fly to Bujumbura, Burundi, arrive 12:40 pm (5:40 am OK, 41 hrs from departing OKC); Spend the night in Bujumbura
Sun, June 3 morning   Go to church, Afternoon drive to Gitega (2 hrs)
Mon-Wed, June 4-6, 8am-6pm daily 1am-11am Teach conference; Evenings for Q&A, discussion
Thursday, June 7, closing time a.m.   Drive back to Bujumbura
Thurs, June 7, 4:55-5:35 pm 10:55- 11:35 am Fly to Kigali, Rwanda
Thurs eve-Sat morn   Meet with ALARM staff and visit projects
Sat, June 9, 9:25 -11:50 am 2:25-3:50 am Fly to Nairobi
Sun-Wed, June 10-13   Relax and rest
Thurs, June 14   Meet with ALARM staff in Nairobi, visit projects
Thursday, June 14, 10:15 pm 2:15 pm Depart for home
Friday, June 15, 4:25 pm   Arrive Oklahoma City! (26 hours)

What does have to do with me and you? What can we do about their suffering?

People are turning to God in their numbers…. Many people (animists) have forsaken their gods and are turning to Christianity as the only hope for their lives….War has created a window of opportunity for Christian missions. But the spirit of tribal division and hatred continues to be an impediment to church growth. In addition, most pastors do not have any training in biblical or theological issues. The majority of pastors have up to Grade 6 education and below and no training after that. There is an urgent need to equip them for the work of the ministry …. There are many orphaned children. Families are separated with members of one family living in different camps. Child soldiers are recruited forcibly. There are also many widows as a legacy of the war or the AIDS pandemic. The family unit has basically disintegrated in many cases. ALARM ( Africa Leadership and Reconciliation Ministry)  

Many ministries are willing to go to Africa to evangelize, but who will go to teach and train the Christian leaders? Who will go to central Burundi to train those pastors who have the task of leading those devastated families? We believe God has called us to go in June.

The struggles are immense; can we really make a difference? The Burundi proverb applies to this problem - It is easy to light a fire and difficult to extinguish it. The Gospel writers said that Jesus came to baptize with the Spirit and with fire. Do we really believe that we have a fire in us that cannot be extinguished and this fire is greater than any difficulty in any country? The 120 followers in the Upper Room, after Christ 's ascension, didn't consider the odds to be too great. The tongues of fire that came to rest on each them could not be extinguished.

You are a vital part of our team. This is our fourth trip to east Africa . Many of you have prayed for us, have given, and/or have shared with others about our work. We are asking for your continued support for this trip. We believe God has called us. With that belief is the assurance that He will provide all that we need. Please pray with us that He will touch the hearts of His people to give financially, above and beyond any monthly donations.

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