Friday, June 25, 2010

STEAM XVII - Trumble Missionary Update - 21 June 2010

Greetings from Malawi!

Today is the winter solstice and is the shortest day of the year in the Southern Hemisphere. As I write this I’m sitting in the African Bible College student center watching the Swiss-Chile World Cup match with several Africans. I’m wearing my Brasil soccer shorts I bought when Beth and I visited Brasil together a few years ago. I’m not necessarily rooting for Brasil in the World Cup but my soccer apparel options are pretty limited (I do also have a Brasil shirt which I’m not sure fits me anymore plus a shirt from a Honduran soccer club who used to use the exact same logo as the Denver Broncos but with a different color scheme). So, while this is the shortest day of the year and while it is much cooler than it was when we arrived in the midst of the summer, it still is not cold. I can easily walk around outside with my shorts and a short-sleeved shirt without a jacket and I’m fine.

Beth and the kids finished up regular school at the ABC Christian Academy last week and Beth has spent some time since the end of school taking care of things in her classroom and stuff. When we arrived in January the school year was already underway and of course there were lots of things to adjust to with the new school, new teachers, new environment, new climate (hot and humid!), and new culture but we survived in one piece (more or less) and we are glad for that. God has sustained us wonderfully through these first 5 months here in Africa.

Near the end of the school year there was a chapel where some parents got up to honor certain teachers and one of the parents of a child in Beth’s class said this (or very nearly this…I’ve tried to transcribe it from the video I took with our digital camera).

I want to convey many, many profound thanks to Mrs. Beth
Trumble for filling in
the shoes of Mrs. B [Mrs. Breuninger, the teacher
Beth replaced] who left…Under
normal circumstances when a good teacher
leaves there is always anxiety – will
we find a good one?—and I want to
assure you that Mrs. Trumble has proved to be
the best teacher in Mrs. B’s
shoes. My kid, for example, has transformed to be
honest….I think every door
in our house is stuck with Accelerated Reader,
Accelerated Reader and this
was not the case before and I want to say thank you
very much to Mrs.
Trumble. I wish and hope that Mrs. Trumble will be with us for
a long time
to come. On behalf of all the parents in grade Two-1 I want to say
thank you
very much.
(check out the video of the parent sharing: ...the young man in the video with the U.S. flag draped over his shoulders and “USA” carved into the back of his hair was departing later that day for South Africa where he attended some World Cup games, including the first two U.S. games which were both draws).

It had been many years since Beth had taught regularly in the classroom but from this man’s testimony, you can see that her return to the classroom has gone pretty well.

Jim has struggled some with the adjustment but the other kids have done pretty well. Please do keep Jim in your prayers. You might remember how it was for you when you were 13 years old and if you throw in a school and country change on top of everything else, that can be a real challenge. Please pray for a close friend for him and that he would be able to see the positive aspects of being in Africa.

June 6th was graduation for the 16th graduating class of the African Bible College in Malawi. A representative of the President of Malawi as well as the United States Ambassador and several others spoke at the commencement. The President’s representative said that he would recommend to the President that he (the President) attend the graduation in the future. ABC graduates from prior years have already found their way into prominent positions in one of the major church denominations in Malawi as well as in the communications industry. God is using ABC as part of the preparation for many future Malawian leaders and it’s kind of neat to be a part of that. To see pictures of the Senior Banquet (which was held the night before graduation) and graduation, follow this link:

Shortly before graduation we had the main computer from the Finance office stolen. The computer wasn’t much of a computer but it did have quite a lot of historical financial information on it. Happily, we had a backup. Unhappily it was from about 2 months prior and thus a lot of information had to be re-entered. However, it was good that most of the data was restored.

I have gotten more involved with the ABC Community Clinic as one of the clinic’s main finance people has left and I have a good working relationship with Becky, the lady who has been charged with improving some of the processes at the clinic. Hopefully before long we’ll have some good budget processes implemented at both the Clinic and the College and that will help us be better stewards of the resources that God has provided to this ministry.

The game has ended and Chile won 1-0 over Switzerland. Truly soccer is not a high scoring sport.

Praise Items
  • For a successful end to the school year.

  • That all of our family is currently in pretty good health

  • Food, Skype, House, TV,


  • That the school break would be refreshing for Beth and the kids

  • Good friends for the kids, especially for Jim

  • The recent graduates of ABC who are out finding where God will use them.


Beth & Dan at the Senior Banquet

Peter Bodde, the United States Ambassador to Malawi, and Dan. Don’t you think the Ambassador has a funny smile (if that’s what you call that grimace)?

      STEAM XVI - Trumble Missionary Update -- 22 May 2010

      Greetings from Malawi! The weather here has turned quite pleasant. It is the dry season but the rainy didn’t end so long ago and there is still a lot of green (of course, being from Colorado where not much grows, my standards for such things are rather low).

      Beth and the children have about 3 ½ weeks left at the ABC Christian Academy and it will be good to reach the break! The College students only have two more weeks. Just like in the States, this end-of-school-year time is a busy time of with lots of extra activities. We will soon have a Senior banquet, baccalaureate, and graduation. Last weekend was Super Saturday which is a fun day (kind of like a track & field day) of competition amongst 5 teams: The four classes of students (Fresh, Soph, Junior, Senior) plus a staff team. The rules for qualifying as “staff” are fairly lax and Will (our 10 year old) participated in the 400 meter relay, the 100 meter backwards run, and the 3 legged race. Beth took 4th in the women’s cycling event. I was part of the staff tug-of-war team (which we won, by the way). On Saturday evening folks gathered on the “football pitch” (the soccer field) for food. There were 3 bonfires set up and there was even an opportunity to do s’mores (although these s’mores weren’t exactly what we are used to in the States…the chocolate was from a chocolate cookie). I can’t imagine that the bonfires did a lot to improve the soccer playing surface! To see some pictures, follow this link

      Earlier this month the college had Spiritual Emphasis Week. The Monday was a national holiday but for the other 4 days, regular college classes were put on hold. Students met in small groups in the mornings in people’s homes for prayer (I hosted one group in our home) and then there were two worship/chapel services each morning and another on Tues-Thur evenings. Bob Botsford, senior pastor at Horizon Christian Fellowship in San Diego was the key speaker but there was a whole team that came with him including other speakers as well as some musical guys who led the students in song (in a much more enthusiastic way than my Presbyterian roots prepared me for). Pastor Botsford shared several messages on Hope from various scriptural passages. On Friday evening the Junior/Senior Banquet was held on Friday evening (the whole student body, not just the Juniors and Seniors, is invited to attend). This was my 4th Junior/Senior banquet but the first in almost 21 years. For the first time, I finally went with a girl (Beth).

      This past week there was a dedication ceremony for a new building that is being largely financed by Evangelism Explosion. EE will be able to use the building as a training center during ABC breaks but during the school year it will provide additional classroom space as well as additional women’s dorm space. It’s neat when the body of Christ can unite for His glory in the way that ABC & EE are doing on this project.

      We have had a bit of sickness in our house over these last 2 weeks or so. Each of the children has missed time from school. There was one day where Elizabeth and Will stayed home and after a while, Stephen came home too. Mostly it’s been diarrhea/upset stomach kinds of stuff and not horribly unpleasant. Beth hasn’t been 100% during this time but has not had to miss any teaching days. I’ve been fighting a cough for quite a while now and last Tuesday I went to the ABC Community Clinic where I was diagnosed with bronchitis and prescribed some medicine. However, it’s now Saturday and I’m still sick (I’m not totally debilitated but I’m not exactly at the top of my game either). On a positive note, the cost for seeing the doctor and filling 3 prescriptions was about $23-$25…less than my co-pay used to be for the doctor’s visit alone! So, medical care is cheap. On the other hand, I was in a store where I saw flour tortillas and the price worked out to more than $8 for a package of 8 tortillas…I did not purchase any. Gasoline runs at over $5 per gallon.

      This message has gotten rather long but if you’re still with me reading, let me mention a few additional things. Please commit these issues to prayer:


      · For the way that ABC is investing in the lives of future leaders who will take their Christian witness into their spheres of influence.

      · For the provision of a new headmaster who will be moving to Malawi with his family in August to serve as the headmaster of ABC Christian Academy for the next 3 years.

      · For the united work of Evangelism Explosion and African Bible College on this new building project


      · Trumble family health and strength to finish the school year well.

      · Staff needs – Have you ever felt God tugging at your heart to explore short or long term service in missions? If so, let me encourage you to consider coming to ABC to serve. You might be surprised at the way God can use your gifts here in Malawi. Of course each year there is a need for college professors, teachers for the Academy, and medical staff for the Clinic but we also have other needs that might not be as immediately obvious:

      • Facilities/Maintenance - Our main facilities/maintenance guy recently moved back to the States with his wife (who was a teacher at the Academy and is now expecting their first child). The African Bible College campus has more than 40 buildings sitting on nearly 50 acres that need to be maintained.

      • Accounting/Finance - My area of focus thus far has been on the college side of the ministry here in Malawi. However, there are two other key finance people, one each at the ABC Christian Academy and the ABC Community Clinic, who are both departing within the next 45 days. Please pray for the provision of qualified people to step in and fill these needed administrative rolls.

      If you feel God leading you to overseas missionary service but don’t know how your particular gifts could be used at ABC, why not contact me so that I can put you in touch with someone who can help you explore where your gifts might fit?

      Elizabeth has a blog. Why not check it out for her unique perspective on things:

      Thank you for your prayer and support!

      Dan ~ for the Trumble family

      Whether I deserved it or not, I was in one of the pictures with some of the luminaries on the day of the building dedication. Included in the below picture are the presidents of Evangelism Explosion and African Bible Colleges, an international board member of EE, and the founders of African Bible Colleges (and some others, including me).

      Beth and Dan at the Junior/Senior Banquet

      Trumble kids in front of one of the fires on the football pitch on the evening of Super Saturday

      Elizabeth, Stephen, and Will with hedgehogs (the real one was found not far from our house)

            STEAM XV - Trumble Missionary Update -- 3 May 2010


            We have now been in Malawi for 14 weeks. As we move toward winter in the Southern Hemisphere it is getting cooler and that is a blessing. Beth is teaching 2nd grade full time and it is truly a time-consuming job but she is enjoying being with the kids.

            Beth gets to be on the “front lines” of ministry as she interacts directly with the children in her class. There are several nationalities represented by the children in her class including Malawi, Korea, India, The Philippines, Zimbabwe, and the USA.

            It is certainly keeping her busy but she enjoys being with the kids and she says that some of them give good hugs. Stephen is one of only two children in the class who live on the campus of ABC. The others all live in the surrounding community. She does enjoy being with the kids and she says that some of them give good hugs.

            My role is a bit farther from the “front lines” of ministry but I do believe that the finances are a foundational piece of the ministry and it is important for the financial management to be sound so that other parts of the ministry can effectively be carried out. However, this week I’ll have some additional opportunities to interact with the college students as this next week is Spiritual Emphasis Week. Today, Monday, is a national holiday (Labor Day) but on the other weekdays, the normal college schedule is suspended and the college students and staff will be engaged in worship, prayer, and hearing the Word preached by Bob Botsford, pastor of Horizon Christian Fellowship Church in San Diego. People from the community are also invited to attend the evening services. There will be daily morning devotional/prayer times and I will be hosting one of the group’s (of about a dozen students) in our house for these times.

            Davie, the guy with whom I work most closely with in the office, is a young Malawian man who is getting married to Constance on Saturday. This will be our first wedding in Malawi (or anywhere outside the Unites States for that matter) and ought to be an interesting experience.

            In March, Kelly Dehnert, the music professor here at ABC, led a group of students on a musical tour in the United States. The group is called “Mingoli” (meaning “beautiful sound” in Chichewa, the language spoken in Malawi). This was the first time ABC had done something like this and it was very well received. It was a great opportunity for some of these African students to share with churches and other groups and to challenge the perception of Africans as being only needy and in want and having nothing to offer the world. Certainly there is great physical poverty in Africa but the people are made in God’s image and they have many gifts and talents. This tour was a neat opportunity for them to glorify God by sharing some of their musical talent.

            These are some direct quotes from some of Kelly Dehnert’s updates over the last several weeks:

            So, on return we now need to work through some of the angst it creates to go into another country that is not your own. One comment upon return was that they didn’t know their country was so “backward”. The first reaction is to simply hate your own country and see only the good in the newly experienced country and no good in your own. It is hard to process through the failings and strengths of both countries…because they both DO have failings and strengths. It once again brings me around to the recognition that we cross cultures to bring the gospel to bear on both our own culture and our neighbor’s and it challenges us both. It also helps to remember this world is NOT our home.

            After this tour I became all the more convinced of our need to stand beside our brothers and sisters insisting that God has made them and they have abilities and talents that come from Him. It is not in their best interest for us to become their paternal providers. They don’t need more of that from the West. They need training and encouragement. Their talents were really on display on this tour!

            One of the Mingoli members is currently working to raise the funds necessary to start a piano studio for children. She is a fine musician and is seeking to fulfill the cultural mandate God has given each of us. She is not seeking handouts, but “working with her own hands what is good” that she can provide the only such music training in Lilongwe. It is very exciting to talk to her and see her eagerness to be trained to apply the gospel to all she does.

            If you are interested in hearing what Mingoli sounds like, follow this link and if you choose to purchase any of the tracks the proceeds go to benefit the ministry of ABC.

            Finally, there are several positions for which we have need. If you or someone you know is feeling God’s call to missions, please pray about the possibility of serving at ABC.

            · Elementary school teachers for next school year

            · A facilities/maintenance manager

            · Doctors (options for both short-term and long-term service are available)

            · Mass Communications Lecturer

            · Athletic Director (starting Fall 2011)

            If God is calling you to missions but none of these positions seem like you, contact me anyway. You might be surprised how God will use your gifts!

            Prayer Items :


            · For God’s continued work through the various ministries of ABC, especially for the successful Mingoli tour to the United States

            · For Beth’s adjustment back into full time teaching after a lot of years off

            · For the good way that the family has adjusted to life in Malawi


            · For God’s blessing on Spiritual Emphasis Week – that students, staff, and members of the community who hear the Word would be blessed

            · For Davie and Constance’s wedding on Saturday and their marriage – that the wedding would go well and that they would model a biblical marriage

            · For a strong finish to the school year for Beth and the kids as well as the college students.

            Thank you for your continuing prayers and support.


            Dan ~ For the Trumble Family

            Beth’s 2nd Grade Class

            Trumble kids with the banner for Spiritual Emphasis Week

            Ever wondered what happens to a glass Fanta bottle if left in the freezer for too long?

            Thursday, June 24, 2010

            STEAM XIV - Happy Easter! 4 April 2010

            “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; He has risen!” (from Luke 24)

            Happy Easter from the Trumble Family! Jesus is risen indeed! Today, Easter Sunday, marks 10 weeks since our family arrived in Malawi at our new home on the campus of The African Bible College. Without the resurrection of Christ the African Bible College’s chief aim would be moot.

            The chief aim of African Bible College is to train Godly men and women for Christian leadership and service. The curriculum is designed to prepare the college’s graduates for Christian vocation. The degree is designed to be either terminal or preparatory for further education. Students are being trained for Christian leadership; consequently, the college desires students who are committed to God’s guidance and dedicated to the Lord’s service.

            Praise God for His perfect plan of salvation and for rescuing those who He has called to belief in Jesus, the only means by which we can be saved from the punishment we all deserve for our sins!

            ABC has a Christian radio station which broadcasts to the local community and in addition to Christian music and Christian teaching, people have the opportunity to take classes by radio. To get a sense for what some of the content is like, follow this link: About a week and a half ago a man named Mr. Waya Kamsepa came by the campus. He was hoping to meet with Jack Chinchen, one of the founders of ABC, but Dr. Chinchen was not available so I met with him. He wanted a Bible so that he could follow along with the radio broadcasts. He also expressed a desire for a diary (something to write in). I didn’t know exactly what to do but how can you turn down a request like that where someone is looking to get their hands on the Word of God? I told him to come back the following week and on Thursday he did, indeed, come back. I had not done a good job of finalizing the process of getting my hands on a Bible for him but he waited while we found one in the book storage room for him. I talked to Beth and she had a little book with pages in it and only a few had been used so she ripped those out and I was able to give him the Bible and the little book. I prayed for him before he left. Please be in prayer for Mr. Kamsepa.

            Beth and the kids are on a two-week Easter break from school and in Malawi Good Friday and Easter Monday are national holidays so I get a bit of a break from work in the Admin office as well. Last week was the first week of the break and we went with some friends to the Lujeri Tea Estate for an extended weekend. This is located in a huge tea growing area and is very beautiful. There are two houses at the tea estate which are available to be used for overnight stays and our group used those two houses. The tea estate is near Mt. Mulanje and it was fun to spend some time near a mountain after living most of my life near the mountains of Colorado. We went on a very pretty hike a ways up the mountain. We live in a world tainted by sin but there are still some very beautiful creation out there.

            For pictures of the tea area and the place where we stayed, follow this link:

            For pictures of our hike and Mt. Mulanje, follow this link:

            Prayer Items


            o For Christ’s ultimate sacrifice of His life and for his triumph over death

            o For the men & women studying at the African Bible College.

            o For God’s creation and the opportunity to enjoy it.


            o For Beth as she takes over one of the 2nd grade classes full time upon return from the Easter Break

            o For the kids at the Christian Academy and the students at the college as they enter the home stretch on the school year after they return from the Easter break.

            o Pray especially for the college students as many still have fees which are due next week. Some are at risk of not being allowed to finish the semester if they cannot make adequate progress on paying their fees. The amounts still outstanding are modest by U.S. standards (often less than $500) but are a significant challenge for some of these students who come from very modest backgrounds.

            o Pray that Mr. Kamsepa (the man who came to get the Bible) would be blessed as he studies God’s Word and that God would use him to bless those around him.

            Thanks for your prayers and support!


            Dan (for the whole Trumble family)

            Trumbles after the hike. Dan did much (MUCH) perspiring on the hike.

            There were snails at Lujeri Lodge. Here are the Trumble boys and Shea Dehnert and a bunch of snails.

            Mt. Mulanje in the background, tea in the foreground.

            STEAM XIII- Trumble Missionary Update - 14 March 2010

            We have had an eventful couple of weeks since our last STEAM update went out.

            You may recall that in the last STEAM update I mentioned that a couple of ladies on campus were seeking medical attention outside the country. On a happy note, Amy, who had gone to South Africa to seek treatment for a bulging disc, was in traction for a while and that didn’t work but she ended up having surgery and it was a success! It has greatly relieved her pain and she will rejoin her family this week after being away for almost 3 weeks.

            On a not-so-happy note, this week we lost our doctor. Holli High, the wife of the doctor at the African Bible College Community Clinic, left to go back to the States to follow up on a suspicious mammogram she had here in Malawi. On Thursday morning we learned that she does have breast cancer and by Friday afternoon, James (the doc) and his two boys (Wesley, 7 and Chad, 10) were on their way home. Ashley, their almost 2-year-old, had traveled back to the U.S. with her mom. Please be in prayer for the High family as Holli is facing surgery and chemo therapy. Selfishly, we hate to lose them. Besides the medical expertise that James provided, they are a nice family and were going to be one of the families who was going to be staying in Africa through the North American Summer months (a lot of people will be gone over those months but our family is sticking around). Chad was in Will’s 4th grade class and is a real nice kid. There has been some good news of late from an x-ray and some bloodwork and it appears that the cancer has not spread to other parts of Holli’s body so that’s something for which we can be thankful..

            Many of you may know that my mother passed away in 1979 from illness related to breast cancer. Ruby Bostrom, a neat older lady in our church in Colorado Springs, sent a message about 2 months ago in which she included the following:

            Dan, your mother , Gladys, and I were very good friends and she taught SS in my dept. I was the supt. of Beginners for I think over 20 years. Those were the days that our attendance was "bulging" to some 30 plus children and 3 teachers plus Bev Lovelace as pianist and I led the singing. Dan, I think you were older and I had Amy in the dept. Later your mother came to help. It was common knowledge that her time on earth was limited---it was a morning service and cong. was singing "How Great Thou Art" and Warren and I were standing across the aisle from your mother and dad and we were singing the 4th verse and I looked over and when we came to the line that says "and take me home" your mother looked into your dad's eyes and smiled and that scene was indelibly printed in my memory box. To this day when I sing that verse, my heart brings that to mind. And I am not sure I ever shared that with you. Talk about "tugging my heart" that has. And then for you and Beth to meet and now are going to the mission field, my heart is with you in a very special way--a part of you is in my heart of hearts.

            We arrived in Malawi on Sunday the 24th of January. On the following Sunday, the first time we attended church here in Malawi, we sang How Great Thou Art as part of the service. The church is International Bible Fellowship and it meets on the campus of the African Bible College. It’s awfully convenient to get to as it might be as close to our house as the Lantz house is to our church back home (some of you don’t know Merle & Diana Lantz but to give you an idea, if Jim, our 13 year old, were to leave our front door at a sprint, he could easily be sitting in a pew in less than 60 seconds and 30 seconds might not be out of the question).

            I had shared previously that Elizabeth was going to be repeating sixth grade next year and that we were on a pretty intense schedule of extra tutoring (5 hours every two weeks with her teacher and 5 hours every week at home). This creates a pretty tight schedule when piled on top of Elizabeth’s other homework but we have been pounding it out and it’s mostly been me working with her on math and so that gives us some good father-daughter time (sometimes it’s better than others). On March 5 Elizabeth did some testing with a lady here who has some expertise and this past Friday, we got the word that Elizabeth is dyslexic. I knew her brain worked differently from mine (and a lot of people’s) and in some ways this can be very wonderful but in other ways it’s really challenging. However, with this knowledge, we should be able to move forward in a more productive way while trying to intentionally overcome some of the challenges that this dyslexia creates.

            On March 3 our container arrived with our household goods. It took just over 11 weeks from the day in December when we loaded it until we received it. This was one of the fastest times people in these parts have seen for a container to get to ABC from the States. It is a blessing to have many of our things (for me, it’s especially good to have our bed back) but it has also created a level of additional work as we figure out how to get things set up and stuff. It is a blessing to have so much but there is an element of a curse in having so much as well. Before we left we purchased new appliances that are 220 volt rather than the standard 110 volt we use in the States. Most of the appliances seem to work well and that’s great. There has been some challenge finding the right part to hook up our new stove so it has been sitting in the middle of the floor in our kitchen while we continue to use the old stove that we’ve been borrowing.

            In a strange way, but kind of on a related note, on the day we loaded the container in Colorado Springs, there was an accident involving another missionary who was shipping some stuff on our container and helping with the loading process. This person slipped and fell and broke a couple of fingers and at least one rib. The hand ended up requiring surgery and now this person is doing better (although still not back to normal). Anyway, this ended up producing several thousand dollars of medical bills and the person who fell had no medical insurance so I have accepted liability for paying the medical bills. The person has worked to try to receive grace on the bills with some success and we recently received word that one company that had billed a little more than $6000 has agreed to a 50% charity discount and so that company is now owed only about $3000. We are still waiting to hear about the other 4 bills.

            It is an interesting experience raising support from others after so many years of having a regular salary which was guaranteed every two weeks (it all comes from God anyway and it wasn’t really guaranteed but it is easy to take that regular provision for granted). We are approaching the point that will mark one year since we began seriously pursuing the idea of coming to Malawi to serve as missionaries with ABC and God has graciously provided very adequately for our financial needs. On one hand, when considering the regular financial commitments that have been made, we are still well short of our full support level. Based on specific regular commitments, our support level currently stands at about 57%. However, through one time and periodic gifts besides the monthly/annual commitments, God continues to meet our needs very adequately and we were even able to purchase a vehicle soon after arriving and that has been a blessing. However, we don’t know exactly how the future finances will work out and I would ask for your prayer in relation to that. I have rolled the pension money I earned for my years of service at Compassion into an IRA where I can gain access to it if necessary. There are income taxes and a 10% penalty for accessing that money early so it’s less than an ideal proposition but it’s a blessing to have that as a fall-back option. I’m quite aware that most of the students who attend African Bible College (and certainly millions of Malawians across the country) would have no similar financial resources to fall back on.

            Finally, there is a group of African Bible College students under the leadership of our friend, Kelly Dehnert, who are currently on a short tour of a few States in the U.S. where they are sharing their musical ability and showing some people in the States an example of some of the quality of students that make up those attending African Bible College. The group is called ‘Mingoli’ (which means ‘Beautiful Sound’ in Chichewa, the primary language spoken in Malawi). For each of the 6 students, this is their first time to visit a Western country and from the news we hear, overall they have handled a fairly grueling performance schedule and the culture shock of visiting the U.S. very well. Please be in prayer for the people involved in the tour and that God would use this visit by these remarkable students to touch the hearts of those who hear. For an example of what Mingoli sounds like, follow this link ( and choose the “Listen Now” option in the upper right corner of the web page that opens.

            Our family has now been in Malawi for 7 weeks. Until yesterday, none of us had ventured more than 25 miles from our home since we first arrived at our house but yesterday we took a trip with Connie Dehnert and two of the Dehnert kids, Shea and Janelle, to Lake Malawi where we played in the warm water and enjoyed a time of recreation. Lake Malawi is the 10th largest lake in the world by surface area but the 4th largest in terms of water volume.

            Finally, let me highlight some staff needs that ABC will have next year. If God has been calling you, or someone you know, into missions, please consider coming to serve with ABC in Malawi. Some key openings are the following:

            o One or two doctors to serve in the Clinic.

            o School teachers for the Christian Academy (where Beth will be teaching 2nd grade)

            o Facilities/Maintenance – the young man who has been overseeing the maintenance on the campus is leaving in May. We could REALLY use someone with good maintenance skills.

            Prayer Items:


            · Our container arrived quickly and in good shape overall

            · Amy who has been delivered from the pain that the bulging disc was causing her.

            · High guys (the doctor and his sons) arrived home safely and that the initial indications are that the cancer has not spread.

            · God’s provision for a discount on the medical bills for the person who was hurt on container-loading-day


            · Mingoli in the United States – for continued safe travel and good health and that the performances would be God-glorifying and that some valuable cross cultural exchanges would occur.

            · The High family as they work through treating Holli High’s cancer and adjusting back to life in the United States. The 2nd and 4th grade boys will rejoin their old school so they won’t be in a totally strange environment but changing schools in mid-March is less than optimal.

            · Financial provision for the Trumble family. Both for the medical bills for the person who was hurt and for ongoing expenses. Pray also for this person’s continued recovery from the injuries.

            · Elizabeth’s dyslexia and our response to it

            · Beth as she takes on a greater and greater load of teaching her 2nd grade class in preparation for the time when the “main” teacher of the class departs for the U.S. to have the couple’s first baby and Beth has the leadership of the class all to herself.

            · For me (Dan) that I would have wisdom to propose the right changes to the finance processes of the College and that I would add real value to the administrative side of things.

            Thanks for your prayers and support!


            Dan (for the Trumble family)

            Our piano comes off of the container. This is the piano my mom used when she was young.

            Mingoli, the musical group touring the States

            Stephen in the sand at Lake Malawi (Will can be seen behind him).

            For more pictures from our Lake excursion, follow this link:

            STEAM XII - Trumble Missionary Update - 2 March 2010


            Thank you for your prayers for the Trumble family and the ministry of the African Bible College here in Malawi. Sunday marked 5 weeks since we arrived and we are doing well. We had a time after we were here where the rains were not coming like they need to but now we are experiencing rain most days and it will hopefully be a good year for the maize crops which means people will eat (sort of an important detail of life, wouldn’t you say?).

            Beth is now helping out with one of the 2nd grade classrooms. She will acquire the class full-time in April when the current teacher and her husband leave to go back to the States to have their first baby. Beth will gradually acquire more and more responsibility over the next few weeks and then soon the classroom will be hers. The last year Beth was regularly in the classroom as a teacher before this was the last full school year before Jim was born. That was 1995-96 so it’s been a few years. Please pray for her as she makes this transition.

            I am working in the office and learning about the finances. Malawi is an interesting place. Here in Malawi many, many things are paid in cash (and even a lot of the checks we write are made out to cash with the idea that the people will take the checks to the bank and take cash out). The largest bill in circulation is worth about $3 so large numbers of bills are being moved around a lot. Paying bills in the United States is a piece of cake. Here, you often physically take the payment to the office of the entity to whom you are paying. It’s crazy inefficient but you don’t trust the mail system.

            The kids are adjusting well overall. Elizabeth’s 12th birthday is Thursday. Elizabeth is a very special girl who has many wonderful gifts. She’s an artist (see some of her work at this link: E-Art). She sees the world differently than most of the rest of us which is pretty neat in many ways. However, it also means that her brain works differently than many of us and so there are some things that are a real struggle for her. One of these is math where she is behind where she should be for 6th grade. Her reading level is also not where it should be. We have met with her 6th grade teacher here at ABCCA (African Bible College Christian Academy) and we are on a fairly intensive tutoring schedule with her. 5 hours every two weeks with the teacher plus 5 hours per week at home. I am working with her on math and it’s some fun to spend time with her and some frustrating because she can’t see some of the number relationships which are so obvious to me. Elizabeth is going to be held back and will do 6th grade next year. This is probably good as it will give her some chance to catch up on some of the things in which she is behind but please be praying for her as she tries to catch up and as she deals with being held back (she seems to be dealing with it pretty well at this point).

            We have been using mostly borrowed furniture since we arrived but it sounds like our container will arrive tomorrow. Some students will help us unload the container and move stuff. It ought to be interesting.

            Prayer Items


            · For a relatively good adjustment to our new home

            · Safety & Health

            · Provision of a good vehicle at a reasonable cost


            · For the ongoing adjustment. Pray especially for Jim that he would find joy in being in Malawi and that he would develop one or more really close friendships

            · Elizabeth’s tutoring and for a special birthday for her.

            · Pray for the health of those on campus. We have two ladies (both are wives and mothers) who are seeking medical attention outside the country while their husbands and some of the kids stay here in Malawi. Amy is in South Africa (see attached message) and Holli is on her way to the States.

            Thank you for your continued prayer support!


            Dan (for the Trumble family)

            A picture of our family in our front yard taken on Sunday.

            Our new car. A 1996 Toyota Ipsum

            A large stack of bills

            If you wish to see a more extensive collection of pictures from our first full month in Malawi, please follow this link:
            Malawi Feb.