May 29, 2015


Africa

Lessons Learned: Serving with MCC changed his life

Henry J. Rempel, high school biology teacher. Served with Mennonite Central Committee in Somalia (1980-1983), Uganda (1990-1991) and Ethiopia (summer of 1999).

"I was permanently changed after living in the Horn of Africa. I witnessed extreme poverty and people dying. Yet I also experienced the largest human generosity in my lifetime. I saw people give away much of what they owned in the name of friendship.

Henry J. Rempel hands out sweet-potato cuttings to Somali refugees.

Henry J. Rempel hands out sweet-potato cuttings to Somali refugees.

I went for short periods of time with very little to eat and drink. Water was at a premium in refugee camps. Today I try to live in a way that reflects the reality that many in the world don't have the abundance we do. I try not to waste water. I feel obliged to do this.

When I think of how our Canadian lifestyles create life-threatening climate change for others, I see the faces of my friends. If more people had this same direct connection, they too might be led to further change in how they live."

 

-- compiled by John Longhurst

 

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition January 18, 2012 0

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