March 2015 Prayer Letter

March 2015 Prayer Letter



March 2015

We praise God that the Ebola crisis is nearly over in Liberia. There have been no reports of the epidemic affecting the Kuwaa Chiefdom or our national co-workers. Thank you, our prayer partners, for your prayers and financial support during the Ebola epidemic. Through your generous gifts we were able to send $3000 to be shared with our mission partners in Liberia: the Lutheran Church in Liberia (LCL), the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Liberia (ELCL) and the Samaritan’s Purse mission organization (Franklin Graham) to assist them in their efforts to deal with the Ebola situation.

This year the mission will be constructing two more new wells and conducting water/sanitation workshops and pump technician workshops. Again this year we will also sponsor a Kids4Kuwaa, Vacation Bible School for over 100 children in Belle Baloma.


A metaphor for so much about what the Kuwaa Mission does and about what the Kuwaa people need.  In this case, physical Bridges.  The current ones requires courage to navigate.  Please help us fix this major issue to allow a safer and more efficient flow of God’s love to the Kuwaa people.

Recently, a friend of the Kuwaa Mission donated $6000 for bridge building/rebuilding work. We need to raise  another $6000 to complete the project. These bridges are of log and plank construction and are vital for the transportation of well building materials and other supplies up country. Of the 16 Kuwaa villages, only 3 have motor road access. The others are accessible only by foot or motorbike which require bridges also.

Please consider helping us raise the $6000 needed to complete the bridge project this year. Thank you for your generous support of the Kuwaa Mission as together we share Christ’s love with the Kuwaa through our water, medical and school projects. Also, please keep the Kuwaa people and the Kuwaa Mission in your thoughts and prayers.

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation


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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458



January 2015 Prayer Letter



January 2015


A Blessed and Happy New Year to our faithful prayer and financial supporters of the Kuwaa Mission. This month we want to share with you some information about the support received from school children at Christ Lutheran Church in Costa Mesa, California.  Five years ago the  congregation and its school began to support the Kuwaa Mission through various fundraisers and activities informing members about the  work of the Mission, especially during the recent Ebola crisis in Liberia.

These 3 girls raised  over $176 for K4K by making and  selling bracelets at church.

Ed and Diane Stelling, Kids4Kuwaa students and school principal Caleb McFerran.

The school children raised $603.35 in the October 2014 weekly chapel offerings.

Na mama o, tegbela gbaa (Thank you, very much, in Kuwaa) boys and girls of our schools and Sunday Schools as you share your love for the Lord with the Kuwaa children.  Please continue to pray for the Mission and the Kuwaa children in Liberia.

If your congregation, school or Sunday School would like to get involved, we have Kids4Kuwaa bookmarks and coloring page masters available for children.

Please contact us by email at:

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation



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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458


Kuwaa Mission 5 Year Anniversary Prayer Letter


5 Year Anniversary 2014


Help celebrate The Kuwaa Missions 5th  Anniversary

Pray, Volunteer, Donate or Partner

With God all things are possible Matt 19: 4

During this Holiday season please join the Kuwaa Mission Board as we celebrate five years of God’s work.

On November 9th 2014 Board member Lolitha Shepard celebrated with Bethany Lutheran Church in Slidell Louisiana, the birth place of the Kuwaa Mission.

The members were moved to see how God is transforming the lives of the Kuwaa people in far away West Africa. This transformation was supported by donors like you and church congregations who have prayed and decided to pledge their financial support to the Kuwaa Mission.  Much work has been accomplished in the past five years including the installation or repair of wells in thirteen of the sixteen villages. There have been many helpful workshops and training from well pump operation to the proper use of water filters. In the last year the Kuwaa Mission has been blessed to build a clinic in the village of Kondesu which will serve many of the surrounding villages with much needed medical care.  There is much work still to do in the coming months and years, please pause to pray and send much needed financial support for both the Kuwaa Mission and the Ebola epidemic.

We the Kuwaa Mission Board would like to thank all our Men & Women who have served in the United States Military as we observed Veterans Day Nov 11, 2014.

The Kuwaa Mission Board would like to thank each and every person who has prayed, donated their time, talent and treasures to the service of caring for God’s people.

Please pray for The Kuwaa Mission Board members and their families. Especially Cindy Bye, Rev Dick Thompson and Stan Olsen as they recover from surgery and the Bishop of the LCL Jensen Seyenkulo and all other aide works from around the world involved in the Ebola epidemic in Liberia.

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458



Christmas 2014


(yes that’s billion) was spent on the Black Friday weekend of 2014. It is likely that a good portion of that money was spent on those in need, but most of that money was probably spent on gifts for people who didn’t really need them.  The Kuwaa Mission is serving people who REALLY don’t have much of anything – especially clean safe drinking water or health care.  What better way to express your gratitude to our Savior than to honor him, and someone dear to you, than by giving a gift of life: clean water.

The Kuwaa people need and appreciate everything we can do for them.  Your donations have already made a big difference, but they still need so much.  If you would like to make a donation to the work of the Kuwaa Mission in honor of someone who has played an important role in your life we have attached links for two downloadable cards that you can print out and give to your honoree. One can be used at any time of the year and the other card is specifically for Christmas of 2014.

Please visit the Donation page for more information and the links for the cards.

Thank you from the Kuwaa Mission and the Kuwaa People!

December 2014 Prayer Letter

Kuwaa Mission December 2014 Prayer Letter



December 2014


Our greetings to all of our mission partners this sacred season of the year from the Kuwaa Mission.  Christmas is typically a season of the year for which we give thanks to our friends, and the Kuwaa Mission has much to be thankful for.  Your support is at the top of the list.  Without your prayer and financial support the Mission would not have been able to accomplish what it did.  What has been accomplished you may ask?

• Distributed over 100 water filters to 16 villages

• Installed 12 wells and rehabilitated many others

• Provided 3 scholarships for “Deacon Training” successfully completed

• Provided one nursing scholarship successfully completed

• Conducted our initial “Teacher Training” workshops

• Conducted two “Water Well Pump Maintenance Training” workshops

• Conducted our initial “Village Sanitation” workshop

• Conducted our initial “Vacation Bible School”

• Built a remote 8 room rural clinic with well and Nurse Quarter to Liberian Health Department standards and turned it over to the Ministry of Health via a Memorandum of Understanding

• Provided support and funds to the Lutheran Church in Liberia and Samaritans Purse in the fight against the Ebola virus

• Provided medicines and medical supplies to the clinics in Fassama and Kondesu as well as midwives in the villages

• Built a strong partnership with the Lutheran Church in Liberia

• Initiated a working relationship between the Lutheran Church of Liberia and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Liberia

• Earned the respect and trust of the Kuwaa People

• Built a strong working relationship with the Government of Liberia

• Built a strong partnership with Samaritans Purse

All of these accomplishments were only possible with the financial support of individuals, churches and organizations who believed in the Kuwaa Mission, in its goals and in its capacity to successfully implement its objectives.  I urgently request your continued support this year.  Each year the Mission has successfully completed its planned work program.  The Kuwaa Mission continues to place high expectations on its prayer and financial warriors, and the year 2015 is no exception.  This coming year the Kuwaa Mission plans to:

• Rehabilitate the bridges between Fassama and Kondesu to insure that vehicles, especially the Ministry of Health, can travel to the new clinic in Kondesu.  This will also enable the continued development of this area of the Kuwaa kingdom.  Projected cost $9,500 usd.

• Install three new wells and conduct another well training workshop.  Projected cost $29,725 usd.

• Conduct another village sanitation program.  Projected cost $850 usd.

• Conduct another Vacation Bible School.  Projected cost $550 usd.

• The total work program for this year is $40,625 usd.

Transportation of people and materials has always been the most expensive part of the Mission’s program and remains our largest challenge.  Thanks to our dedicated contractors and Samaritans Purse we have always been successful in overcoming this challenge.

Our balance sheet, while very positive, requires your immediate help to continue our successful record of assistance to this remote area of Liberia and the people who have been neglected by their government.  We continue to look to new areas of support and while promising have yet to actually result in funding.  Most of us are very fortunate in that we really don’t need “another package under the tree”.  However there are thousands in the Kuwaa area that do need “a package” and as the ONLY organization providing help to the people of this area please consider giving a generous donation to the Kuwaa Mission’s General Fund in honor of someone dear to you.  Not only will you be honoring someone and letting them know you will be providing assistance to many people who truly need and appreciate your assistance in their difficult lives.

I ask you, as CEO of the Kuwaa Mission, to prayerfully consider the Mission and its work.  To keep the work going, during this Christmas season please give to the Kuwaa Mission’s work as generously as possible.  Please send all donations to Bethany Lutheran Church to the address as noted below.  You can also go to our website for “PayPal” donations.  It is also very easy to set up automatic monthly donations to the Kuwaa Mission by visiting the website.

Thank you again for your support.  From all of the Board of Directors, we pray that you have a truly blessed Christmas season.

Stan Olsen, CEO

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Missionc/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458


October 2014 Prayer Letter

Kuwaa Mission October 2014 Prayer Letter


October 2014


Greetings in the Name of Christ,

“As we pray to our God and Father about you, we think of your faithful work, your loving deeds, and the enduring hope you have because of our Lord Jesus Christ.”   1Thess 1:3

Happy 5th Anniversary, Kuwaa Mission!

The Kuwaa Mission is having an anniversary celebration.  That’s right- we’re celebrating our 5th Anniversary during the month of November and many of our partner congregations are joining in the celebration.  During the past five years, you, our donors and partner congregations, have helped build wells for safe drinking water; clinics for medical care; scholarships for technicians, nurses, and evangelists; training for well and filter care; school supplies and Christian education to families in the villages of the Kuwaa Chiefdom.   All of these vital projects could not have been accomplished without the support of our partners in ministry.  We are so thankful for your prayers and generous contributions over these last five years.  We couldn’t have done it without you.

It’s not too late to celebrate with us!  We suggested November for your congregation’s Kuwaa 5th Anniversary Celebration, but any day that is convenient for your congregation would do.  It could be as simple as using the Litany of Celebration & Thanksgiving  that follows during your morning worship, taking up a “noisy (loose change) offering,” and serving a “birthday” cake following the service where you might play the YouTube video of the Mission’s progress.  Or you might choose to host a Liberian meal on a Sunday evening or week night.  If you have questions or would like more ideas for planning, please check out our website at  There you will find resources to assist you in spreading the message of hope that has been made possible by your faithful support of the Kuwaa Mission.

Thank you for all you’ve done and continue to do for the Kuwaa people.  Now, let’s PARTY!           

The following Litany or a similar prayer may be offered in worship as part of a celebration of the Kuwaa Mission 5th Anniversary.


Litany of Celebration & Thanksgiving for the Kuwaa Mission         

Leader: God the Creator, maker of heaven and Earth,

Congregation: Have mercy on us.

Leader: God the Son, Redeemer of the world,

Congregation: Have mercy on us.

Leader: God the Holy Spirit, Sanctifier of the Faithful,

Congregation: Have mercy on us.

Leader: Holy, blessed, and glorious Trinity, one God,

Congregation: Have mercy on us.

Leader: That it may please you to have your church go into all the world to help others so that the name of Jesus may be known and worshipped by all peoples,

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: That it may please you to awaken a zeal for missions in the hearts of all your people,

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: That it may please you to send out laborers into your harvest,

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: That it may please you to kindle within your people an awareness of mission and a willingness to provide faithful support,

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: That it may please you to bless the mission work of all who labor with few resources and great challenges,

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: That it may please you to provide safe drinking water; clinics for medical care; scholarships for technicians, nurses, and evangelists; training for well and filter care; and school supplies and Christian education for the people of the Kuwaa Chiefdom in Liberia, West Africa.

Congregation: We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader:  For the health and safety of missionaries and volunteers with the Kuwaa Mission who bring expertise, encouragement and education to the Kuwaa people.

Congregation:  We beseech you to hear us, O Lord.

Leader: For an increase in evangelism and ministries of mercy in our local community and abroad, that all people may come to know and enjoy your blessings,

Congregation: We pray to you, O God. Lord, hear our prayer.

Leader: For greater awareness of and empathy for the needs of all your people throughout the world and the injustices that they endure,

Congregation: We pray to you, O God. Lord, hear our prayer.

All:  Amen


Blessings and peace in the name of our Risen Savior,

Rev. Carol George

Congregation Coordinator

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Mission:  c/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458


August 2014 Prayer Letter

Kuwaa Mission August 2014 Prayer Letter-2


August 2014


Special Report: Ebola Crisis

By Jennifer Cosgrove, Ph.D.

Greetings in the name of Christ Jesus, the Great Physician:

            It is with heavy hearts that we see Liberia making international news due to the Ebola Hemorrhagic Fever crisis.  Starting this past spring in the neighboring country of Guinea, this disease has spread in four West African countries, infecting over 3,500 people and killing over 1,900, including over 120 medical care workers (according to the CDC and other sources).  Some local experts believe these numbers are underestimates by 25-50%.  The situation was called “uncontained and out of control” by Ken Isaacs, a vice president at Samaritan’s Purse, when he spoke to the U.S. Congress.  Hospitals and clinics are understaffed to the point of having to close.  People are dying from complicated births, accidents, malaria, and other treatable conditions.  There are not enough doctors, medical workers, isolation units and supplies.

            While suspected and confirmed cases of Ebola have been found in all the counties surrounding the Kuwaa villages, their county, Gbarpolu, appears to be untouched (so far).   For this, we thank God.  We also thank you again for your support of the Kuwaa Mission’s work to provide hygiene and sanitation education, water filters, wells, and a medical clinic.  These necessities are important to the health of a community at all times and are crucial in areas hit with a medical crisis such as Ebola.

            How has this crisis impacted our work?  Our last volunteer trip was in April to install the solar energy system and officially open the medical clinic in Kondesu.  Since then, Liberia’s Ministry of Health has not been able to supply the clinic with medicines and other supplies as they are overwhelmed with the Ebola situation.  We also need to continue well maintenance (e.g. check the quality of the water in the wells and chlorinate them, as needed).  We will not send our local assistant to the area until/unless it is safe to travel there (the counties surrounding the Kuwaa region have Ebola and the government is restricting travel).   While we cannot send State-side volunteers until the crisis is over (at least not until 2015), we want to help the Kuwaa people with medical and other health related supplies and we request your continued financial support for these efforts.

            You may have seen solicitations for donations towards the Ebola crisis.  We would like to suggest the following groups who have shown their dedication to this crisis and are known for their fiscal responsibility. These organizations have been overwhelmed by the situation and need funds for the support of brave volunteers and the medical supplies and equipment that are desperately needed.  You can donate via these web links as well as receive the latest information about the crisis by “liking” their Facebook pages.  Please “like” our page as well and invite your friends and family.

Samaritan’s Purse

This Christian organization has been extremely helpful to the Kuwaa Mission in helping us transport our supplies upcountry.   We have sent them funds to help with their work in ministering to patients afflicted with Ebola.

Serving in Mission – ELWA Hospital

ELWA Hospital is one of the treatment sites featured in the news.  It is the hospital where Dr. Brantly (who was in Liberia with Samaritan’s Purse) and Nancy Writebol worked.  These are the two Americans who were successfully treated in a special isolation unit in the United States.  ELWA is particularly important to KM Board Members Rev. Richard Thompson, Ed Stelling, and Jennifer Cosgrove as this was the school and medical clinic they went to while in Liberia in the 1970’s.  Currently, Doctors Without Borders is opening up more isolation wards at this site.

Doctors Without Borders (Medicins sans Frontieres)

This secular organization is widely recognized for the volunteer medical care it provides throughout the world.  Their medical volunteers have been on the frontlines of this crisis from the beginning.

Global Health Ministries

This is a Lutheran organization working with the Lutheran Church in Liberia, particularly assisting their hospitals in Phebe and Curran, which have been in the news.  They have been sending personal protection equipment and other supplies to these clinics.

PS:  This is a link to the CDC map of West African countries and counties.

In the bottom half of this map is Liberia.  The white area (that is surrounded by orange Ebola areas) is Gbarpolu county where the Kuwaa people live and the Kuwaa Mission works, by the grace of God and your support.


Concluding with some good news!

Ester Kowula, Rev. Chris Kowula’s daughter, has graduated from nursing school and received six honors.  She is in Fassama currently and wants to work in the Kondesu clinic once it receives supplies.  Ester was a recipient of a financial scholarship from the Kuwaa Mission.

A Kuwaa young man, Joseph Jeogbor, is a graduate of Phebe Nursing School and desires to work in the Kondesu clinic as well.  He is the grandson of Pastor John Manawu who was a significant partner with Lutheran Bible Translators in their work with the Kuwaa people in the 1970s and 80s.  We are so blessed by the Lord with these faithful servants who desire to serve their people as their parents and grandparents have done.  Your continued financial support for scholarships makes this possible.

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF and MS Word versions of this letter will be available on the website

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The Kuwaa Mission:  c/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458


June 2014 Prayer Letter

Kuwaa Mission June 2014 Prayer Letter



June 2014


Fresh, clean water is so vital for life among the Kuwaa people in Liberia, West Africa.  Now 14 of the 16 villages in the Kuwaa Chiefdom have one or more wells built by the Mission to provide this precious life-giving and life-saving necessity for the people. Infant and child mortality is such that half the children die before reaching the age of 10 years!

Christ Lutheran Church in Costa Mesa, CA, where we are members, has contributed the necessary funds to provide for a well in the village of Konjade near where our family lived 40 years ago while we served as missionaries with Lutheran Bible Translators. The well was completed several months ago and a plaque was placed on the well cover in recognition of the generous gift of our church.

The children of Christ Lutheran School also contributed  to the Kuwaa Mission through their April chapel offerings. Their  goal was $500. They were short of the goal until the 4th grade girls pictured below (Kennedy, Grace and Leila) held a fund raiser which put them over the top,  including a $40 gift from Leila. In lieu of birthday presents, she asked family and friends to contribute to the Kids 4 Kuwaa Project providing school materials for the Kuwaa children. Thank you Leila and the children of Christ Lutheran School.

Ed Stelling, member of the Kuwaa Mission Board of Directors.

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

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The Kuwaa Mission:  c/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458

Stan Olsen – April 2014 Trip Report – Kuwaa Mission


Dave and I met at JFK airport and hit it off immediately. We gave each other a brief synopsis of our life histories and boarded the plane. During our 2.5 hr. layover in Acura, Ghana we made initial planes for the next days’ work in order to leave Monrovia ASAP on Friday the 28th.

On Friday Dave inspected the solar system in storage and decided everything was there but that we needed to get some wall anchors, ground wire and a ground rod as well as groceries before we headed upcountry. We started to walk to the store and were met by Sam Zinnah, one of Senator Momo’s assistants. He drove us around town and we stopped on the way back to meet the Senator. He stated he was planning to come up as well as Representative Malai and that he would be sending some rice with us for the dedication ceremony. Sam proved to be of great assistance upcountry during our negotiations with the Health Department. . Late in the afternoon McGill showed up with his pickup and we loaded the solar system and rice in the dark for our 6:00am departure. Dave & I had supper and then it was time for bed.

Loaded TruckSurprisingly enough we did leave exactly at 6 making our way thru town in the dark peering thru the grimy, broken windshield and one barely working headlight. By the time we reached the outskirts of town it was light and we made good time to Bopolu. I was hoping to meet Dr. Tucker, the County Health Director, on the road but we didn’t recognize each other’s vehicles. We stopped at the hospital and I met with the County Health Team (CHT). I told them briefly about what we had done, that I was under the impression that in principal there was agreement that the Health Department would take over the clinic and that we just needed to finalize any areas of concern. I also stated that the KM had been paying for a nursing student to attend the nursing school at Curran Hospital and that she and two of her friends were willing to be stationed in Kondesu. They were very pleased to hear that as it’s often difficult to get someone willing to be stationed in such a remote place.

The CHT agreed and asked if the KM would take care of salaries and pay for medicines and I said we didn’t have the resources to pay for that. They then asked if we could provide a motorbike for the health team to make deliveries and help with their programming. I replied that I thought we could but that I would have to take that to our board for discussion / approval. I said that the clinic dedication was set for April 13 and we would turn the building over to them effective May 1 and everyone left satisfied. The health team was to make an inspection of the clinic during the next week.


After loading several boxes of medical supplies for the Fassama clinic into the pickup we left town and arrived in Fassama about 5:30pm. The pickup was unloaded and everything carried to McGill’s house for the night for security reasons. At 7:00am the next morning everything, included the fridge for medicines previously delivered to Fassama, was carried back to the Pentecostal Mission where the helo was to land. Again, right on schedule Samaritans Purse arrived and flew Dave, I and the rice and small items to Kondesu. Two more flights got all the supplies delivered and the fourth flight consisted of Stone and Jesse Yarsiah of Kondesu, another aide to the Senator. He proved to be indispensable during various negotiations in Kondesu and in getting the people of Kondesu to actually do what they said they would do when it needed to be done.


The clinic actually looked just as good up close as it did from the helicopter on arrival. The contractor, Ston, did a wonderful job on the clinic. We met briefly with the townspeople, they again committed to helping when requested, to feed us and to get the site ready for the dedication. We told them we wanted to sleep at the clinic for security for the solar system and to enable us to work more efficiently. It worked well and we had cool quiet evenings with just enough visitors to make it interesting but not overwhelming.

Dave set to work that morning, the 29th, installing the panels on the roof while I reviewed the work and made plans with Stone to finish everything by the 13th. In between helping Ston with the painting, coordinating some last minute items with the carpenter (doors, window shutters and bed frames) I was able to hang the lights and run the wire in the attic.

Solar SystemBy the 2nd it was determined that the items Ston bought were not even in Fassama and in fact hadn’t even left Monrovia. I told Ston to go to Monrovia and have everything back in Kondesu by the time I returned from visiting several other villages.

Plaque-ClinicDave finished the solar system installation on the 31st and that we night we had a special ceremony for the people of Kondesu to thank them and for the official initial turning on of the lights. Most of the ceremony was by the light of the moon. There was plenty of singing, dancing, and prayers. Just before the final prayers and after the lights went on they presented a white chicken to Ston who gave it to me and I in turn gave it to Dave – his first white chicken! He was quite surprised and intrigued by the ceremony. The evening was closed with a prayer by Iman Samuka Duclay.

Gift The next day the County Health Team (CHT) arrived to inspect the clinic; this was their first visit there. They were very impressed. As they walked around they made a few changes to the “names” of the rooms, wanted additional beds, chairs, tables, a medical records cabinet and a latrine for the clinic visitors. The carpenter agreed to make the furniture in time for the dedication and a separate contract was made for the latrine with a man from Kondesu. We borrowed 12 each 1×12’s for the furniture from a local man and another person keeping a few for the senator, it may come back on us later that we need to pay to replace these. The CHT decided that the building serving as the nurse quarter would be insufficient for two nurses. However there is a building close to the clinic that is being constructed by Senator Momo for use as mid-wife clinic. (Never did figure out why he agreed with the town’s request for that with a clinic being constructed next door.) It was determined that this would serve perfectly as housing for two more nurses as the CHT feels that they need a staff of 3, one being a mid-wife. It was agreed that after the dedication ceremony we would all meet with the senator and try to convince him to finish the building and turn it over for housing.


Dave wanted his own “experience” and since the solar system was complete he wanted to work his way back to Monrovia on his own and check out the town. As it worked out Koko was in Kondesu as his crew was finishing the well for the clinic and together they walked 7 hrs. to Fassama. The next day Dave caught a vehicle from Fassama to Monrovia. He made the journey without incident.

On the 6th I left for Fassama and to inspect the wells that Koko had installed last year and this year. I returned on April 11 and we easily finished the final touches to the clinic, the furniture, the latrine and installed the steel doors as required by the health department. The men showed up on the day of the 12th to erect the shelter from the sun for the dedication and the women came afterwards to clean up the grounds.


The people of did a fine job of cleaning the site, getting seating arranged for most of the 200 people and building the structure to provide shade. Senator Momo, Representative Malai, the District Superintendent Nathan Sue, the County Health Team, and various tribal / paramount and sectional chiefs were in attendance.   Senator Momo brought with him a person from a radio station in Monrovia who taped the program and interviewed myself and later played these on the radio in Monrovia. The Senator also brought with him Sam Zinnah who had ushered us around Monrovia.

The dedication ceremony scheduled for 10:00am started promptly at 11:00am. The program started with the youth leading a procession around the clinic and the singing of a song of thanks. Following this the program continued as follows:

  • Opening invocation – Kuwaa Parish pastor Rev. Paye who substituted for Bishop Seyenkulo as he was not able to be in attendance

Rev Paye

  • Overview of project – Stan Olsen (see attached comments)
  • Cutting of three ribbons – Kuwaa Mission, Rep. Malai, Senator Momo
  • Dedication of the clinic – Rev. Paye
  • Remarks:

o   Kondesu Development Chairman

o   LOKOGASA – a representative of the organization composed of the four nearest villages for development: Lowoma, Kondesu, Gatema and Sasasu.

o   Section IV Chief

o   Paramount Chief – Joseph Vallah

o   Chief Elder of the Belle District

o   District Superintendent – Nathan Sue

  • At this point the order was spontaneously changed by the local women/mid-wives who broke into song, presented a white chicken to Rep. Malai who gave it to Senator Momo who gave it to me who saved it for supper.
  • Following this was the “Gowning Ceremony” where Ston, Cindy, Bishop Seyenkulo and Stan received a traditional Liberian outfit.

o   County Health Team – Bennie Clark

o   Rev. Paye – substituting for Bishop Seyenkulo

o   Representative Malai

o   Senator Momo

  • Vote of Thanks – Kuwaa Mission, Stan Olsen (see attached comments)
  • Closing song
  • Closing prayer – Iman Samuka Duclay

All the speakers followed the same general theme of thanks to the KM for the construction of the clinic and the necessity of the local people to take on the responsibility of caring for the care givers who would be assigned here, to maintaining the road in good condition so that the supplies could be delivered, so that people could drive here which would be necessary for the development to continue, and that the clinic was not for the people of Kondesu or LOWAGASA but for all the people in the area – it is not to be tribalized, as emphasized by the Senator.

Following the dedication everyone was fed cassava and rice. During this time period I met with the CHT, Jesse Yarsiah, the Senator and his aides to discuss the mid-wife building he is constructing. The end result is that he is receptive to the concept of the building being used to house additional nursing staff, as strongly recommended by Jesse Yarsiah and Sam Zinnah. The Senator looked to the KM to take over this responsibility. I stated that we did not have the funds nor the staff to do so but that we would recommend a contractor for the work. He was going to take this recommendation back to the village to get their approval since it was their idea originally. I believe that this will take place but have not received any confirmation as yet


The wells are without a doubt the strongest program we have going. Koko is doing an excellent job of managing the workers, the materials, delivery of the items, working with the peoples in Kondesu, in Konjade and in Fassama. All are located in a spot convenient for the people to use and in a location that is likely to have good water. All the wells were dug to about 40’ in depth and had 5’-7’ of water in the bottom, this at the driest time of the year. I tested the water in all the wells and it was clean and potable. Koko has a very competent, hard-working and enjoyable crew working for him at this time.


Murphy Zadoe guided me from village to village: Fassama to Konjade to Kenata where we spent the second night. The congregation from Trinity Lutheran Church in Park Forest, Illinois funded this well and I installed a plaque on the well noting this.

The third day we walked from Kenata to Teglei where Koko was conducting a well maintenance class over 5 days. There were 18 students in the class and by the end of the 5th day Koko felt that they all had a good handle on how and why the wells need maintenance. Additionally he felt they were all competent to actually perform the maintenance. I signed Certificates of Completion for all in attendance.


In January of this year Cindy conducted our first “Community Led Sanitation” program in Kenata with the assistance of Korpu Barsay, Koko’s wife. I first met Korpu in Fassama as I was beginning my tour of the wells and again in Kenata a couple days later. As I entered Kenata my first impression was that the town was much cleaner, basically free from feces, then it was when I visited it last year at this time. Korpu brought me up to date on what the people were doing as a result of the workshop and we toured the town to make an inspection. They have dug one latrine and had started on a second when their only shovel broke. I made arrangements for them to get another shovel from Saata in Fassama as well as a shovel, pick and digger from Koko’s tools in the Fassama container. The women seem to understand the need to keep the town clean and Korpu said she would be back again to check on them. Hopefully this will be a model village we can use as an example to the other villages to clean up their town. We must keep this program going: clean water and sanitation will do wonders for their overall health.

Sanitation Program




While in Robertsport I contacted Rev. Amos Bolay of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Liberia (ELCL) to discuss how the KM and the LCL could work together to serve Liberian in general and Lutheran’s specifically. I set up a meeting with Rev. Isaac Dowah, Special Assistant to the Bishop, since Jensen was in Kenya at an African Council of Churches meeting.

We met in Jensen’s office upon my return to Monrovia upon my return from Robersort where I explained to Rev. Bolay what we were doing and our hope to reach out to the people who belonged to the ELCL and how an agreement would help the KM obtain funds from the LCMS in the US. Amos then gave me a brief history of how the ELCL came into being by the work of a LCMS person who returned to Liberia and worked to get the church established mainly up north in Liberia in the Bandi area. Currently there are no ELCL congregations in the Kuwaa area. There has been a refusal by the LCL in the past to acknowledge the ELCL and not try to work with them.

At this time there are several ELCL congregations in Monrovia due to the displacement of people after the war, some very close to LCL congregations. There is no conflict between these congregations and they work well together. Amos main concern that he wanted clarified was the LCL stance on gay and lesbians. Rev. Dowah stated that the LCL and ELCL positions are identical in that they both oppose such unions both theologically and culturally. Their respective stances on women in clergy is just an issue they disagree on but that wouldn’t stop any cooperation between the two bodies.

We closed the meeting with a general understanding that the KM would be accepted to work in the ELCL areas upcountry and that the ELCL would do what they can to assist the KM. This would require us to work up in the Lofa County area of Liberia near Kolahun and Voinjama. These cities are quite a distance from Monrovia but they do have pretty good road access. I have sent out a copy of the draft MoU between the LCL-ELCL that speaks to their relationship with the KM for your review / comment / approval.

Kondesu Clinic Dedication


KM and the LCL first visited the Kuwaa Area in 2008

  • Recognized need for clean water, health care and sanitation if the people were to prosper
  • Over next few years we held meetings with the people in the area and MOH it was agreed that a rural clinic was needed
  • Kondesu was selected between the KM and the County Health Department due to being centrally located to serve many towns and villages
  • Floor plan was approved by County Health officials in 2011 at a meeting at the LCL compound with the KM
  • Work began in 2012 with the laying of the foundation and sawing of timber
  • The people of Kondesu have played a big role in helping with the lumber, making blocks, hauling water, hauling sand and hauling rock, housing and feeding the workers
  • Clinic has a large reception area, storage area, pharmacy, bathroom, 2 exam rooms, a general ward and a maternity ward.
  • 2 room nurse quarter has been built, an incinerator to burn medical wastes and a septic tank installed, a well specifically for the clinic but also close to the school
  • This clinic is the second clinic to be built in the Fassama district since the end of the fighting and the first clinic to be built since 2004.   CONFIRM WITH KOKO
  • The first nurse willing to work here is Esther Kowulo and her family is from Konjade. I welcome her back to her area along with her nursing associates


  • Many people and organizations are responsible for contributing to the success of this clinic
  • Countless people, churches and organizations in the US contributed money and prayers
  • The people of Kondesu and the surrounding towns and villages have helped by supplying labor and food
  • The contractor, DMV Construction, did a wonderful job as you can all see
  • Senator Momo, Representative Malai have been supporters of the project since day one
  • The Minister of Health, Dr. Walter Gwenigale, and the County Health Department have been supporters from the start
  • The LCL for their assistance in organizing this event
  • The cooks for the fine meal everyone is looking forward to
  • I personally want to thank is Rev. Chris Kowula, a long-time friend. He and I have travelled many miles on foot visiting the Kuwaa people ever since 1998. He has always made me feel at home no matter where we are. Without his direct involvement in the KM from the start of our work the wells and this clinic would not have been possible. Thank you from the bottom of my heart Chris.
  • My special thanks however is reserved for Kendall Kauffeldt and Samaritans Purse. Without their support in the form of prayers, land transportation and helicopter transportation of personnel and building supplies we would not be here today. Not only have they helped with this clinic but they have also helped with transportation of well materials
  • Most especially I’d like to thank God for making this long dreamed of day a reality. As the saying goes: “Everything is possible with God”. To God Be the Glory!

o   Let the people say AMEN

May 2014 Prayer Letter

Kuwaa Mission May 2014 Prayer Letter




May 2014

In April of this year the Kuwaa Mission celebrated three major achievements.

Our CEO, Stan Olsen, went to Liberia in late March and visited with the Gbarpolu County Health Department (CHT) while en-route to Kondesu.  It had been essentially agreed that the Health Department would accept the clinic but he needed to meet with them to finalize details.  At the conclusion of the meeting it was agreed that the Health Department would accept the clinic as of May 1, 2014 and that a Memorandum of Understanding would be signed.  The verbiage for the MoU has been agreed upon and should be signed before the end of May 2014; in the meantime the CHT is making plans to staff and supply the clinic.

On Palm Sunday,  April 13 the Kuwaa Mission dedicated the new clinic in Kondesu, Liberia.  We started this project last January during the dry season, as that is the only time the roads are passable and then we stopped work during the rains and in December of last year we restarted the project.  The clinic contains a reception area, storage area with the solar system controls and medicine refrigerator, pharmacy, OB ward, general ward and d two exam rooms.  Next door is a smaller building that will be used to house a nurse.  The senator for this area is building a house next door that may be used to house two more nurses as requested by the CHT.

Attending the dedication ceremony was Senator Momo, Representative Malai, the County Superintendent, the CHT and several chiefs of the Kuwaa area, various local dignitaries and about 200 interested local people.  The day was warm, sunny and the air was filled with excitement.  Many songs and some dancing occurred and of course there were many speeches.  The Senator, Representative and Superintendent all thanked the KM for their work and emphasized to the local people their responsibility to take care of the health providers who would be stationed here, to maintain the roads so that medicines can be delivered and development take place.  The Senator also noted that the clinic was for everyone, not just the people of Kondesu, not just Lutherans but everyone who lives in the area or is traveling through.

Our third milestone was the first meeting between the Lutheran Church in Liberia (LCL) which is associated with the ELCA in America, and the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Liberia (ELCL) which is associated with the LCMS in America and the KM.  Stan arranged a meeting between Rev. Amos Bolay, the Bishop of the ELCL and Rev. Isaac Dowah, the Special Assistant to the Bishop of the LCL, (Bishop Seyenkulo of the LCL was out of Liberia on church business and unable to attend) and Stan presented to Rev. Bolay his request that the KM and the ELCL work together to enable the KM to obtain funding through the LCMS to help the people in Liberia associated with the ELCL and the LCL.  Despite the theological differences between the two church bodies we all agreed that these need to be put aside to so that together we can holistically help the people.

The two church bodies have been operating in Liberia for many years but have not set down and discussed how they can work together.  Within two weeks of Stan’s departure the two bishops did meet and a draft of a Memorandum of Understanding between the two is in the final stages.  It is very rewarding to see such positive steps being taken after such a prolonged drought of communication.  Truly all the people will benefit.

Dave Hagstrom of Billings, MT accompanied Stan on his trip in April and completed the installation of the solar system on the clinic in only 4 days.  A special ceremony was held upon reaching this milestone with all the villagers of Kondesu taking part.

One other special note is that when Cindy Bye was in the Kuwaa area she and Korpu Barsay conducted our first sanitation workshop, in Kenata, to help the local people understand why they needed to keep the town clean of feces.  When Stan visited in April he was pleasantly surprised at how much cleaner the town was than during his visit in 2013.  We are making a difference!!

Thanks to the wonderful support we have received from all of you we have been able to make remarkable progress in serving the Kuwaa People of Liberia.  When we first started working in Liberia2009 we had no idea of where our mission would take us, we only that we knew we needed to try and help.  Now, with your prayers and generous financial contributions, we have truly helped made a difference in the lives of the people.  As we finalize plans to involve all our supporters for our 5th year anniversary celebration please continue to keep the Kuwaa Mission in your prayers and financial support.  Please check our website soon for we will posting many photos of the clinic and the dedication ceremony.

Our contact information for donations is given below.  Please contact myself or Rev. Carol George, the Congregational Coordinator, if you want a spokesperson to visit your congregation.  Her email address is:   Thank you for your continued prayers and financial support.

 Donations can be given in two ways:

1.   Make out check to: The Kuwaa Mission  (send to Bethany Lutheran Church (see below))

2.   Go to the Kuwaa Mission Website at www.kuwaamission.orguse PayPal to make a one time or automatic monthly donation

PDF and MS Word versions of this letter will be available on the website

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The Kuwaa Mission:  c/o Bethany Lutheran Church,  1340 8th Street,  Slidell, LA 70458