The Week That Was (Feb.09-16.09).

by Chris Kamalski


Melanie, Johannes, Tony, Curtis

NCSA Apprentices 2009 (Top Row, L-R: Barbara (Staff), Busi, Me, Adrienne, Colletta, Dayna (Staff); Bottom Row, L-R: Melanie, Johannes, Tony, Curtis


The Week(s!) That W(ere): A blur–Week 2 of Orientation was this past week. We spent Monday at Kwalata Game Resort doing a version of team-building exercies. I felt like I was trapped in a hilarious African version of an Office episode, just waiting for Michael Scott to pop out of the bushes and make some inappropriate racist comment.  Doing things like trust walks, standing on a log figuring out whose birthdays were when and moving around silently, crossing over an iron rope walkway over a river as well as these super scary/cool swinging logs that we had to step in unison with.  It was actually a super fun day, and I connected well with my apprentice team.  Had a super fascinating conversation that night about culture and worldview, and how we see the world through our own cultural lens.  Tuesday was spent in more conversation, and then the afternoon was with Luc and Petunia Kabongo in Soshanguve.  They lead the InnerChange team (CRM’s division that serves as an order among the world’s poor) there, and were showing us some of their ministry.  Wednesday we had a cultural lesson at the Ward’s house (Bryan and Daleen are on staff) surrounding the wonderful SA traditions of tea and cricket–as in how to play/be at both!  I now have been schooled in the art of pouring a correct cup of tea–and am loving my Rooibos!Thursday found us out again at the Voortrekker Monument, which highlights the struggle the Afrikaner people had in escaping persecution and violence with the British–in many ways they are SA’s Pioneers, traveling all across the country.  Powerful discussion that night surrounding the book “A Spirituality of the Road” by David Bosch.  First Rhythm (weekly ‘service’ with our community) was Friday night, built around the lyrics of the worship song “Your Love is Extravagant.”  Powerful, powerful time.  Valentine’s Day had a sweet breakfast due to our incredible cooking maestros Melanie and Colletta.  Went to Apartheid Museum in Jo’burg, that was super powerful as well–crazy parallels between SA and American in terms of civil rights movement!  More on this later as well.  Spent afternoon in Soweto (5 million+ person township in Jo’Burg and the center of the apartheid opposition), evening ‘sundowners’ at a South African apprentices’ house in Jo’burg, and then a fun dinner out with everyone.  Church at Third Place today. Whew!

Where I Am At The Moment: Staying up way to late to post this blog in the old EI office.  Really looking forward to a regular schedule and lack of staying up to late to do this stuff 1x a week.  I can’t catch up!

On My To-Do List This Week: Driving is going well!  Only stalled 2-4x today!  Get those dang postcards out.  Get into a regular rhythm. Keep working out. READ.

Procrastinating About: Oh. For the 2nd week in a row I answered this question in the one above!

Books I’m In The Midst Of: Finished Outliers (super interesting, post coming).  Need to finish Celtic Way of Evangelism and A Spirituality of the Road by David Bosch this week.  Want to pick up Obama’s autobiography this week (curious to see what it is about).

On The Current iTunes Playlist: Got into a crazy country kick one night with Melanie and Adrienne, two apprentices.  My top 3 country love songs that I own were played: #3 is Everyday by Rascal Flats, #2 is Lost in this Moment by Big&Rich, and #1 is You’re Like Coming Home by Lonestar.  Got into a super cool argument with Curtis (British South African) about what was truly ‘country.’ Like he knows?!?! 🙂

I’m Thinking About: How late I am up…

Next Trip:  To Soshanguve (the local township) to pray over Wholesome Bakery (a micorenterprise business started by Enterprise, the CRM business division and by my friends Rob and Laura Sturgess last summer) tomorrow.  Stoked to see this take off!

South African Word Of The Week: “BRU.” As in, ‘Howzitbru?’ As in a synonym for brother, bro, dude, etc.  Curtis Love is trying to convince me that this can be applied to females as well.  So far, he has succeeded only in offending our fellow apprentices.  A word I am dramatically over-using right now.

How I’m Feeling About This Week: Stoked!  Mad at myself for staying up too late again though…

Prayer Request: Rest this week.  Catch up on sleep.  Change to unify and open up further to friends here at NCSA.