Monday, 23 December 2013

Merry Christmas

A blog update to wish all our readers a very Merry Christmas. For the first time in 6 years we are celebrating in the UK with family. A UK Christmas is very different from a Nepali Christmas as you can imagine.
This week we spoke in a church and I shared with the young people about a Nepali Christmas so I thought I would replicate that for our blog this Christmas.

Children in Nepal will not be enjoying school holidays this week and many will be at school on Christmas Day. As Nepal is not a Christian country there isn’t the expectation of holidays, in fact their school year is quite different to ours. In addition there is regular disruption to schools due to various political protests which means they often have to make up those days in the holidays.

They may have thought that with going to school it would mean they’d miss church. But don’t worry – church is a full day affair on Christmas day. Many Christmas church programs run for 6 hours or so.
For Nepali Christians they are so excited about being able to celebrate Christmas that they want to make the most of it, it’s not that long since it was illegal to be a Christian in Nepal. Also many Nepali Christians’ families won’t be Christian and so won’t celebrate Christmas – so the church is their family and they want to spend the day with them.

Christmas Dinner
As part of the 6 hour long service there will be Dhal Bhat for Christmas dinner (Dhal Bhat is the standard food for all Nepali’s). They eat it twice a day, every day, it’s made up of rice, lentils & curried vegetables – so no Turkey.
Whenever Nepali’s get together it’s important to share a meal and so this is an absolutely essential part of Christmas for them – their national food. This is their Christmas tradition and having turkey would be weird for them. Also most Nepali’s couldn’t afford to have the huge amount of food that we consume, and waste, at Christmas.

After school, 6 hours of church and a huge dhal bhat I wasn’t sure if any of the young people fancied a Nepali Christmas. But one thing we share in common with Nepali Christians at Christmas is that we exchange presents with those we love.
The reason for this is that we want to show people that we love them and sacrificing a little bit of something we have to give them something they would enjoy is a great way to show love. At Christmas we remember that God gave us the greatest gift he could possibly give us, himself, in the form of Jesus.
For Christians, whether they are in Nepal, England, or somewhere else that is what we are celebrating this week – using our own traditions, or those of others, it doesn’t matter, but celebrating and giving thanks for that very special gift.

Sunday, 1 December 2013


So as we had stated in our previous blog this past week KISC was visited by an inspection team from the USA. They were from an organisation known as MSA (Full name: Middle States Association Commission on Elementary and Secondary Schools – so you see why we just say MSA) and were looking at all aspects of the school to ensure we were living out our values and providing good education.

The KISC mission statement is “To be living witnesses of Christ’s love through excellent education” and it was agreed that this is what KISC is doing and so we passed! This was a process that was started way back in January as we formed a team to guide the school through the whole process, firstly reviewing every aspect of the school and writing a report on it and secondly setting ourselves objectives and action plans for improving the school over the next seven years.

The inspection team spent 4 days at the school and concluded in their ‘oral’ report that was read to the staff on Thursday that KISC “lives its mission and values though an identifiable integration of faith life and culture”. They also said the school was “vibrant with activity and learning” and that students were achieving or exceeding their academic potential.

After so much work that had been put in by so many staff, students and parents, it was great to be able to hear such positive news on Thursday. Even at 5,000 miles away we were feeling the excitement and joy of the KISC community.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Election and Inspection

Counting underway
So the election passed off fairly peacefully last Tuesday, although there was quite a bit of disruption in the build up. The counting is now well under way as you can see from this photo.

This article from the BBC gives more details on how the results are going.

In other news, KISC is all geared up for a week long inspection that beings tomorrow (Monday 25). The inspection is the key part of it's re-accreditation process, having spent much of the past year preparing, completing a thorough self-evaluation and producing loads of evidence to show off to the inspection team. Please do remember the school this week.

Finally we thought you might like to see this piece of artwork that has been produced by staff and students at the school, under the guidance of two of the Art teachers. It looks fantastic and has been set up in the hall. I'm hoping it's still there when we go back as I would love to see it up close. This is what the teacher who lead the process wrote about it: "144 individual canvases created by KISC students and staff. Each piece is beautifully unique -representing everyone's individual God given character... together they create a harmonious colourful mosaic celebrating the KISC community."

Monday, 18 November 2013

Election Day

Public information poster
about the election
Nepal goes to the polls tomorrow (Tuesday 19th November). There has been quite a lot of unrest over the past few days. A National Strike has been in effect for most of the past week which has been violently enforced in places. Buses have been attacked, some while the passengers were still on them which is unusual. It is common in strikes that protesters force the passengers off and then damage the bus as punishment for breaking the strike.

We have also heard rumours today that a curfew is now in place in Kathmandu which we think is due to continue tomorrow making it rather difficult for people to vote.

People need to return to their home towns to vote which is obviously difficult when there is a strike in place for most of the past week, preventing people from moving around the country.

There have been reports of several bombs going off in Kathmandu.

So the elections are meant to go ahead tomorrow and yet many people will not be able to get to the polls or are too scared to try.

Please pray that there will be no more violence tomorrow, that people will be able to vote and that those elected will work for the best interests of Nepal.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

Election Fever

In 10 days’ time Nepal is scheduled to go to the polls for the first time since 2008. As in 2008 the task is to elect a Constitutional Assembly whose job it will be to finalise a constitution for Nepal.
Ballot boxes being carried to a rural
polling station in 2008

The previous assembly was disbanded in May 2012 having taken 4 years instead of the originally planned 2. Despite the extensions they still didn't produce a constitution. So Nepal now has a second chance. Some parties are refusing to take part in the poll. One group have called a 10 day “Bandh” or general strike. This is due to start on Monday and lead up to the day of the election the aim being to stop all transport and close all business across the country. Whether this actually holds is a big question, but you can imagine the potential disruption to all if it does go ahead. Particularly to those who live day to day and need to work in order to eat.

We will be posting more information on the blog around the time of the election. But do remember Nepal in the coming 10 days or so.

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

On Tour

We have now been back in the UK for just over two months and are a month into our new “normal” life. Sam is enjoying school and making some friends and Dan is getting back into the swing of studying. Mim and I are figuring out what toddler groups there are in Didcot; there are lots to choose from, we just don’t know anyone! I have also been applying for jobs, but nothing to report yet.
We have done a couple of home assignment talks locally, but the travelling starts this weekend. Our dates for the next two months are as follows:

12th  October: Fish and chip supper at Friar Lane and Braunstone, Leicester
13th October: AM - tour of Buckminster Road, Robert Hall and Friar Lane and Braunstone, Leicester during their morning services.
PM – Speaking at Celebration Praise at Stoneygate Baptist Church, Leicester.
27th October: Littleover Baptist Church, Derby
3rd November: Toxteth Tabernacle Baptist Church, Liverpool
10th November: South Ossett Baptist Church, Wakefield
23rd-24th November: Earls Colne Baptist Church, Suffolk

Come along if you are in the area and can make it to any. Be great to see as many of you as possible.

Now we know Dan’s college schedule we have been able to sort out the dates that we are available in the spring. If you would like us to come and speak at your church then you need to fill in the speaker request form on the BMS website (

The dates we are available are:

7th, 8th, 9th February
21st, 22nd, 23rd February
7th, 8th, 9th March
21st, 22nd, 23rd March

Priority will be given to Church Partners and there maybe some flexibility for those churches if none of these dates are suitable. Just ask BMS.

Monday, 2 September 2013

New Teachers

This week teachers are going back to work across the country as schools begin back. Being teachers we know quite a few and we've been watching many comments on Facebook from them showing different feelings regarding the fresh start. Many teachers will of course be beginning new jobs. Just before we returned to the UK we spoke to some of the new teachers at KISC, who of course started back in August. We asked them why they decided to come teach at KISC.

Here’s what they said.

Debbie Gough
New Zealand - Head of Science Faculty, Biology IGCSE & AS teacher

I came to visit last year and felt at home straight away with the people here. It’s a really nice friendly, warm and inviting atmosphere. The environment is really nice, with the pot plants and the buildings and the way they are maintained is amazing and makes you want to be in this place. Also I like the fact the classes are small with 20 or so students which means you can actually get to know your students quite well during the year and get to build up relationships with them. I also like the fact that KISC has a real focus on actually developing people as individuals as well as the academic focus, which means it’s more holistic.

Suzie Parr
England - Design Technology Teacher and Primary Art, Year 10 Form teacher.

I decided to come to KISC because I heard about it a year ago from a friend who was here. I got excited about what KISC was trying to do both here and across the whole of Nepal. I’m very passionate about creative learning and so I thought it was an opportunity to come and share my knowledge and skills in another country and ultimately because I felt God called me to come here.

Tara Fairty
USA - Year 5 Teacher

The school is how I want to teach, their passion for education and how they want to do student centred learning. Everything is centred on Christ, it’s biblical, it’s not legalistic how they look at the bible, they look at it through grace, they want to love all their students. These are all the qualities that as I was learning to be a teacher, they were the things I wanted to be able to do in a school and I never found any schools [like that]. When I met people from KISC everything they mentioned, everything they talked about was everything I wanted to be in a teacher, so I said I don’t really care where you are, I want to go there.

Luke & Tonya Padgett
Australia - Luke: Maths teacher, Year 11 Form tutor - Tonya: Chemistry teacher, Year 12/13 Form tutor

Luke: I grew up in Nepal and always thought I wanted to come back and then I visited here 3 years ago and caught the vision basically, and decided I wanted to come teach here.

Tonya: I married Luke and it was part of the package!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Packing, Travelling, Starting anew, Finishing off, Travelling, Wedding, Moving

The packing begins
The title sums up the last 3 weeks in the Parnell family. 3 weeks ago we were in the midst of piles of suitcases, piles of clothes and toys and the rather complex jigsaw puzzle of fitting everything we hoped to take to England into our baggage allowance, and arranging everything we were leaving behind in a liveable manner for the couple taking on our flat.

Sam enjoying the travel
Then 2 ½ weeks ago, Becky, Sam & Mim headed out. Thank you so much for those who prayed for them that day, as the journey went incredibly smoothly and the kids did great. After “The Longest Day” of travelling they arrived at Becky's parents about 24 hours after they had awoken in Nepal. Although it was still technically the same day.

Becky & the kids then had 10 days in England to settle in, renew relationships with the Grandparents and learn about England and it's strange ways. For Mim this was her first time in England since she was 6 weeks old and for Sam England was more a concept than real memories. So it has been great to see how well they have adjusted and how much they are enjoying simple things like a garden, car seats and squash.
Becky & kids arrive home

Dan remained to finish off at KISC, but also start off. His ten days involved finishing off all his work ready to leave Nepal. But last week was also the first week of the new school year and so he was also helping get all that started, and helping new staff to settle into KISC.

Wedding Day
And then came Dan's turn to travel, finishing work at 6pm and flying at 11pm may not be the healthiest way to do it, but obviously it was a lot easier doing it alone. But then within 24 hours of touchdown we were off to a family wedding. This was a great day, and a great opportunity to catch up with one side of Becky's family in one fell swoop.

And then the move. Becky & the kids had been staying with her parents for the last 2 weeks and I joined them for the weekend. But yesterday we were able to move into the house we will be living in for the year. This is the same house we lived in when Sam was born and we are so blessed to have a house for ourselves for the year. It's looking a bit of a mess at the minute, but we are slowly getting unpacked and settling in. Into our house and into the UK.

Tuesday, 9 July 2013


Sita Didi
As I plan the next 3 weeks out in my head I realize that my life is about to become a lot of lists. Lists of people to say goodbye to, lists of jobs to be done before we fly, lists of things to leave, lists of things to take, then lists of what goes in suitcases and what goes in hand luggage, what is coming with us and what can wait two weeks until Dan flies back. I could go on with my list of lists!

Then there are the mental lists we are all making, what are we going to miss and what are we not going to miss in Nepal. What are we looking forward to in England and what are we anxious about.

Anyone who has ever made an international move will tell you that the experience is bittersweet. So many exciting things to look forward to, but so much to organize and so many sad goodbyes. Obviously we aren't leaving permanently, but just going for a year, but in a community like this there are many who won’t be here when we return, some we know about now, others we don’t.

So I thought I would try and give you a taste of what all this might feel like by sharing some things from one of our lists with you. So as to avoid this becoming too negative or an exercise in self-pity I will share with you our positives about Nepal and England, what we are going to miss about Nepal and what we are looking forward to in England. So here we go, in no particular order:

Short, sunny, winters
Close community with people from all over the world
Sun all year round
Speaking Nepali
Real rain!
Our local shop keepers who are always super friendly
Rooftop views of the Himalayas
Sita didi, a local lady, who comes into our home to help 4 days a week, including child care.
KISC – our jobs and being part of the community of KISC
Our flat which has become our home, and is the only home our kids have known

Good bacon and sausages
Going to football (Dan)
24/7 power and hot water
Ben and Jerry’s ice cream
Being able to communicate what I need to, in English!
Open green space and parks for the kids to play in
Automatic washing machine
Our respective mum’s roast dinners

This is by no means an exhaustive list, but some of the things that come to mind as I write. We are really excited about our impending move to the UK and all that the next year has in store for us, but sad to be saying some goodbyes, but also glad they are not forever.

Friday, 5 July 2013


Last week we celebrated the end of another year. This was the sixth school year we have been a part of at KISC since we arrived in 2008. Some of the students who graduated last week were in Year 7 when we arrived (it’s possible to graduate at the end of Year 12 from KISC). They were also the first students to graduate who attended the KISC primary school which opened it’s doors seven years ago.

Freshly painted lockers
It was another good year – and we ended with a high. As part of the last week of school we carried out a Model UN which all the secondary students were involved in, representing different nations and debating difficult issues. To see some of them rise to the occasion and make intelligent, passionate arguments, including some students who struggle to do well in class at times, was exciting. Some of these students are potential future UN and EU diplomats and world changers and this was in evidence already.

We also had the first secondary school splash day – basically a big water fight masquerading as an organized activity. The student council had requested it as the primary school have had one for a few years and they then organized the event. The students also painted their lockers ready for the next year – and had some great designs.

Last Wednesday – the final day of school – saw the end of year assembly where many students and staff were farewelled and, as has become a tradition, some of the staff made fools of themselves (See the first video – I’m wearing the green t-shirt).

Then in the evening we had the formal graduation ceremony/end of year celebration. This year it was attended by a former prime minister of Nepal along with most students, many parents and the staff. It was also great to see many fo
rmer students who made the event. Some were older brothers or sisters of current students others were just back in the country for one reason or another – but they were all back and enjoying celebrating KISC.

After the graduation the party was started with an excellent flashmob organized by the students – which I also managed to get myself involved in (see second video). A great end to another great year. 

Monday, 24 June 2013


Wednesday is the end of the year here at KISC so this final week is full of fun activities and farewells for the staff and students as the school year comes to a close. These include locker painting, a splash day, model UN, exam feedback (fun?), final assembly and a formal EOY function and graduation (keep your eye out for some funny videos next week!).

We will then be starting to think about leaving ourselves. However, Dan is hanging around over the summer to get everything ready for the new school year including doing the inductions for new staff and handing over to the principal as she arrives back from furlough at the end of July. She arrives the day I fly out with the kids (29th July), leaving Dan for an extra 10 days to finish off and hand over.

As we have said before, everything seems to be falling into place for next year. Sam has a place at school, we have somewhere to live and we are starting to get a little information about Dan's course.

I am hoping to find some part time work, but still haven't found anything at present. We feel this is a blessing initially as I can be there for the kids as they go through this huge transition, but it would be helpful for us financially for me to have some work during the year. So please pray that the right job will come up at the right time, with good hours as I would ideally like something where I could still take Sam to and from school most days. I think that with this being his first year at school that is really important, especially when everything is going to be so new and different for him, not just school.

Please pray for Sam and Mim through the next few months. Mim is too young to really understand what is going on at the moment, but big enough to notice the big changes when they happen. Sam is starting to understand and has to say quite a few big goodbyes in the next 2 weeks as his friends leave for their summer holidays and don't get back until after we are gone. He is already quite sad about this, so please pray for him as he transitions from here and then as he settles into life in the UK and starts school for the first time in September. These are huge changes for him and we just want to cover him in prayer at this time that it all goes smoothly for him. Please pray for wisdom for us as well that we will prepare him well for this change.

Finally, as Brits, we hate to talk about money, but we need to! As we have mentioned in a previous post both BMS and KISC are giving some support for the next year. However, we are taking a leave of absence from BMS for the year and so need to raise our own living expenses. We are a large way to doing that already but still a little short, unless I get a very well paid job! So if you already support us through BMS and would like to continue to support us directly next year (you cannot support us through BMS next year) then please let us know. If you are interested in supporting us, either with a one off gift or through the year, then please get in touch with us.

Thank you to all who read our blog here regularly, for showing an interest in our life and work here. We look forward to seeing many of you over the next year as we take a break from Nepal, but continue our lives focused on Nepal, as we aim to equip ourselves to come back better able to do the jobs we have been called here to do. Thank you.

Sunday, 2 June 2013


I’m sure those of you living in the UK are well aware that this month the G8 leaders are meeting in Northern Ireland. And you are probably also aware of the IF campaign that is challenging the leaders of the G8 to do their bit to tackle world hunger, and we to do ours.

The basic point of the campaign is that the world produces enough food for everyone, yet nearly one billion people go to bed hungry every night. The campaign has been backed by a huge number of charities from all walks of life and is focusing on key areas that governments can do something about to make a difference to the poorest of the poor – like many of those who live in

We have been getting behind the campaign too. One of the backers is our mission, BMS world mission, who featured it on their website recently, including a photo of the four of us with spinning flowers, the symbol of the campaign. I also did an assembly on it in school last week and all the secondary students made flowers, many of which are now adorning their lockers. We have even written to our MP about it.  

Over the next two weekends there are BIG IF events in London and Belfast to bring the campaign to a climax. Let’s hope that the G8 leaders get the message and play their part in helping to end hunger. If you want to know more or how you can make a practical difference, check out their website.

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Home Assignment

As you will already know we are coming back to the UK this summer for one year so that Dan can do a masters course. Becky and the kids fly at the end of July and Dan will fly back 10 days later in August, arriving the day before Becky’s cousin gets married. So hopefully the jetlag won’t be too bad!

We are still going to complete a home assignment but spread it throughout the year as we don’t have a 3 month gap between Dan finishing work here and starting his course in the UK. If you would like us to come and speak at your church then you need to contact the church relations team at BMS (  Under the new system they will not contact you if you are a church partner, you need to contact them!

Please be aware that this is a request and not a booking. The Church Relations Team will do their best to accommodate your request. The dates we are available are below. BMS will book them on a first come first served basis. However, we will be offering some more dates later in the year (once we know what Dan’s course timetable will be). So if you miss out on these first dates then there will be opportunity later in the academic year.

29th, 30th and 31st August and 1st September

12th-13th October – Leicester

26-27th October

9-10th November

23rd-24th November

Monday, 20 May 2013

The diggers move in

Plans for the Land
If you’ve followed these blogs for a while, or our prayer letters, or heard us talk, you’ll know that one of the biggest frustrations KISC has faced has been lack of space.

We have been praying for 5 years for more space. The facilities we have are great, especially in terms of classrooms, but we’ve constantly lacked play space. We’ve been inventive; the roof of our main teaching building is used as a small sports pitch, squashed 4-a-side football size. We’ve hired other venues; especially for special events or for sports teams training. But ultimately we are squashed. Especially when you consider in August we will top 200 students for the first time in our history.

So it was with great delight that a couple of weeks ago we were able to sign a deal to rent a piece of vacant land right next to the KISC site. This land has been vacant for a while, but for various reasons we have only been able to even discuss renting it in the last few months. The things that have happened to enable this to come about showed this was a real answer to prayer and the students and staff are all very excited. 
Digger gets to work
At the end of last week the diggers moved in to start to clear the remains of the buildings that once stood on the site and level the land. Hopefully by the Autumn it will be a basketball court, a small field/football pitch and parking space that will keep the existing campus clear of bikes. 

Basically, providing space to run!

Monday, 13 May 2013


In 1975 Pol Pot lead the Khmer Rouge to power in Cambodia and proceeded to orchestrate genocide. Although no one can be sure how many people were killed during the 4 years they ruled Cambodia, it’s likely that 1.5-2 million people (of a population of 8 million) died. The capital, Phnom Penh became a ghost town as people were moved all over the country to work on cooperative farms, often separated from their family.

The course participants and trainers
Last month I was able to travel to Cambodia with another colleague from KISC to attend the Leadership Matters course. This was a great course as it looked at many elements of leadership, from management to communication, from motivation to relationship skills and how all the theory on doing these well stem from biblical principles. Most of the course was focused on practical skills that we could use straight away in our roles to enable us to be better leaders. I really enjoyed it.

While we were in Cambodia we didn't have a lot of time for sightseeing, but we were able to visit the Genocide Museum, a former High School that was turned into a concentration camp during the Khmer Rouge. We saw pictures of those who had been detained there, all but a handful of the 12,000 inmates over 4 years didn't survive and were able to enter the cells and read their stories. 

At the Genocide Museum
But what was particularly special was being able to spend time with people from all over South Asia, and further afield, people who had a desire to serve God in whatever role they were placed in, and hearing many stories about how God was at work across the region.

In particular hearing from the Cambodians on the course and those living and working in Cambodia. Hearing how 80% of the Christians were martyred under the Khmer Rouge, about how, despite all that was going on, the church had effectively reformed and regrown in refugee camps during that time and hasn't stopped since. Meeting people who had lived under the regime and had personal experiences to share. Hearing about people who had nothing, yet risked everything to continue in their faith, and the results that was reaping 30 years later.

Tuesday, 2 April 2013

Mission Trip

When you were 15 or 16 how did you want to spend your Easter break? Well this Easter eight of the KISC students decided that they wanted to spend their break doing a mission trip to the far west of Nepal, to a region called Dadeldhura.

Dadeldhura is so far that as I write on Tuesday evening the team should be just arriving, having left yesterday morning at 5am. They drove for 15 hours yesterday and stopped overnight at Nepalgunj, close to the border with India and about 500km west of Kathmandu. Today was a further 300km, including up a steep and windy hill road and a late arrival.

KISC's owners, HDCS (Human Development and Community Services), a Christian Nepali NGO, run the district hospital in Dadeldhura (it's located in a small village called Armagadhi). It is the only hospital for miles and many people have to walk for days to reach it from all over the region. We have friends who work in the hospital.

HDCS - TEAM Dadeldhura District Hospital
For the next 5 days the team will be involved in the local schools and churches, painting rooms, teaching simple english classes and tai-kwon-doo and helping out in the local church service. Although they do have 3 teachers with them they have planned the trip and the activities themselves and in fact raised all the money for the trip.

The idea of the trip came from two students who used it as part of their manifesto as they ran for student council president in January. While they weren't elected Presidents, they didn't let that stop them and they have organised the whole trip pretty much by themselves and been the driving force behind it. The total cost of the trip was just under $1,000 and they have raised this money themselves over the last 6 weeks, through donations from home churches, a grant from BMS World Mission and a large chunk of the money through a bake sale after the international church one sunday a few weeks ago. In fact they have raised so much money they plan to do another trip next school year, for which they already have a significant amount of funds.

So, if you pray, please remember this team over the next 5 days as they try to make a difference in a remote and very poor part of Nepal, and in the following 2 days as they travel back. This is a group of young people who have inspired me over the last 6 weeks, as they have decided to try to do something to make a difference, and try to bring justice and love in their own way in Dadeldhura.

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Time to go home?

As you may already know we are returning to the UK this August for a year. Dan has a place at Oxford Brookes on a Masters course in Educational Leadership and Management. God willing, we will then return to Nepal and KISC at the end of the course for another 4 year commitment.

We have decided to make this move now as we feel the timing was right for a number of reasons. It will be good for us as a family, especially the children, to have some time in the UK with our extended family, as we have now been here 5 years. Dan has reached a point in his work here where he feels further training will be really beneficial in the roles he is fulfilling. He has had so much practical experience in the 5 years here, but all have agreed it will be beneficial for him to do more study, and get more theory, to hang his practical experience on.

Both BMS and KISC have encouraged our decision and are helping us with the different aspects of this move. We will be based in Didcot, staying in a BMS house for the year. Sam will start school in Didcot this September. Becky is hoping to find some part time work to help support us while we are home and Mim will be spending some time with her Grandma Parnell while Becky is at work.

Many other things are already slotting into place nicely for the year ahead (in fact as we've been working on this blog we've been emailed with our flight confirmations!), and we ask that you join us in prayer as we plan to leave one home for another, for just a year. As we pack up here and try to find people to stay in our flat and for all the logistics involved, such as what to do with our all stuff so that they have room for all their things!

We also ask that you pray with us for the children's transition. We haven't told Samuel yet, although he often talks about when will we next go to England (he's had a couple of friends leave recently and this has made him more aware that we live somewhere that isn't where we are from), and so ask for prayer for wisdom as to when we tell him and how we prepare him (and Mim) well for this move.

Then finally we ask you to pray with us for our financial needs for next year. Firstly, that Becky will be able to find a part time job that will fit around looking after the children. One option is teaching locally in Didcot if a job is available, alternatively she is open to doing something else, just no idea what! BMS and KISC as well as a few individuals have already been very generous in offering to support us next year. We will officially be taking a year off from BMS and so will have to raise the money for our living costs for the year. We firmly believe that this year is an important part of the work that we are doing here in Nepal and are trusting in Him for all our needs.

We are so grateful for all the support so many have given us through the last 5 years, most importantly prayer support, but also financial and so we would ask that for your continued support as we change direction for a year rather than leave our work. We will continue to write prayer letters, update our blog and keep you informed of how we are doing. Of course this means we need to ask for financial support, and if you would be interested in finding out more then do contact us.

Thank you.

Sunday, 20 January 2013

Can you hack it?

We thought we would set you a challenge in our latest blog.

We woke up this morning to find there was no power, when Dan checked we found out there is a new loadshedding schedule. We are now up to 14 hours of power cuts a day. So we wanted to see if you could manage 14 hours a day with no power. So for example today’s schedule is from 7am-3pm, then 7pm-1am with no power. Every day is different so you need to plan each day according to the schedule.  So here is how we manage.

1. Water: Our shower water is heated electrically so no hot showers during the power cuts. You can have a cold one if you’re really desperate. We also use an electrically powered water filter for drinking water so you cannot filter water during those hours. We have enough bottles to store about 12 litres of water so assuming they are all full we have that much water for drinking and cooking with during the power cuts. Of course we have to make sure we fill them up again when the power comes on. Last night we forgot (as we thought we had power this morning) so we had about 5 litres to get us through to 3pm.

2. Cooking: Our oven is electric so we can’t cook anything using the oven during those hours, we have 3 rings on our gas hob. We now have two evenings a week with power when we can use the oven. All other meals must be cooked on three gas rings.

Sitting under the light to read
3. Electrical items: We have a backup system so can have a light on when there is no power and can charge our  computer or phone if we have too, but we try to keep these charged during power time so we are not using our back up system too much. We put things onto charge overnight as that is often when we get the most power. However, despite having a backup system, during power cuts we cannot use the TV or the washing machine and the fridge-freezer is off. We only keep things in the freezer for a few days at the most as the fridge and freezer are now off for 14 hours a day so not much stays frozen in there especially when the weather begins to warm up next month.

So our challenge to you is can you hack it? Could you stick to our rules above and manage 14 hours a day with no power, limiting your water usage, timing your showers, planning your meals appropriately. If you’re really hard core and want to try it for real we can send you a weeks schedule and you can try for a week to live Nepali style.

We also ask that while you read this and if you try our challenge that you remember we are very fortunate with our back up system. It costs about £250-300 for the kind of backup system that we have. This amount of money is far too much for the average Nepali. So while we complain, many Nepalis are sat in the dark evening after evening with just candle light to see by.