October 19,2013 Addis Abba

Dear SD members:
                  I am alive and well in Addis.  It is quite hot, dusty, and windy–all of which are welcome in contrast to the two months of rain I experienced in July and August.  I preached twice Sunday at the Kotobe congregation.  There were some new members; this seems to always be the case there.  I will start my Addis teaching next week; then I depart for the countryside.  I am well and have been able to walk 3-4 miles each of the last two days.  I know you are in good hands with Brother Jay, your elders, and are even now enjoying the good preaching of Brother Jim Ward.  Encourage these good men.
                I was saddened to hear of the passing of Brother Gene Mabry and Brother Earl Hathorne. Brother Earl, several years ago, was a more frequent visitor to our area.  He was always kind in his comments about my preaching; too, his Bible knowledge (quite common for the family he was a part of!) made his comments useful.  I pray he did not have to suffer too much. Brother Gene Mabry and I first met at Florida College many years ago now (along with Derinda Tyler, Marilyn Bell, and Clell Sparks).  The Southside church in Mt. Pleasant helped some with Gene’s support when he and his family were working with the church in Vicksburg, Mississippi; I held a meeting for that church when Gene was there.  While I am not judge, Gene’s work was always steady; he was a builder; he spoke slowly but his words had impact. Gene spoke for five nights during  our VBS; this was in the old M & S building; as I am sure you remember, he spoke on the Sermon on the Mount.  My closer interest to Gene and Janice came from my pleasant association with his daughter Amy, who attended SFA.  Amy remains an outstanding person of faith—a dedicated wife and mother.  All of this, in part, can be attributed to her parents–Gene and Janice.  He will be missed; we rejoice in the hope we find in Christ.
             I will write as often as I can.  Even in Addis, the Internet can be spotty.
More later, Ciao, Randy Harshbarger