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Sad news

It is with a heavy heart that I report that we are cutting short our time here in Malawi and coming home, as of March 26. It has not been an easy decision, either for us or for our sending organization, the Presbyterian Church in Canada.

The facts are obvious. There is a pandemic, and we are in a country with a very poor health care system. What there is, is likely to be quickly burdened with Malawians who need it, and there is likely not going to be the option of flying out to South Africa, as we normally would in a medical emergency. Added into the mix is the fact that the government of Canada is telling Canadians to come home while we still can. All these factors have figured in our decision.

So we begin the painful process of what feels like a premature good bye. Our good friend and head of Friends of Prisons, Hastings, already knows we are leaving, and he will talk with the prison authorities to let them know. We have been advised not to talk about leaving until the authorities have had the chance to make the announcement in their own way. So tomorrow we will try to act normal and carry on as if nothing is happening. Not an easy proposition.

On Thursday we are having a little get-together with the lovely people who have been so kind to us. I will tell you all about it in my next post, I hope. Blair Bertrand has been quite concerned that our leaving be as good for us as possible, under the circumstances, and so has organized this little event. We much appreciate the Bertrands who have been so generous with their time and energy on our behalf, ever since before we came here. We will miss them sorely when we leave here.

Well, before I become completely maudlin and start crying onto my phone, I better end this and get back to bed. It's 2:37 a.m. here, and we have work tomorrow! (Today?). I will report more developments on the weekend at my usual time, as far as I know now. Stay well, all of you. Please pray for us and think of us as we go through this painful process of goodbyes.


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