Water we up to?

The doors to Poetice base were opened at 8am for Armour’s sport teams for the last day of camp. While we waited for everyone to arrive, those present participated in some competitive dodgeball matches. Once everyone arrived, the youth were separated into their four age groups for learning and sport stations. The first set of stations this morning consisted of speed & agility, strength & conditioning, yoga, and a question & answer session. We took a break before lunch to hear a lesson from 2 Timothy 1:7 given by Coach V and Coach T, which focused on power, love and self-discipline. In the afternoon, the second set of stations consisted of kickball, volleyball, softball, and track events. The Armour’s players continued to impress us throughout the day with their athleticism, their willingness to work hard, and their eagerness to learn. We watched in awe as 10 year olds were holding 6 minute planks and doing front flips over 4 foot rope hurdles.  At the conclusion of the stations, we had another opportunity to do a water filter demonstration and send them home with these life-changing devices. Shortly after came the time to make our final goodbyes as we are leaving Choma tomorrow. It is clear that we both made an impact on each other as it was hard for us to think about leaving this group tomorrow, and they were extremely thankful that we could share some new sports and build relationships with them.

Late afternoon, our team walked to a nearby market where we had the opportunity to experience more of the Zambian culture. There were hundreds of small vendors selling goods such as food, clothing, and household necessities. Most of our team bought chitenges, which are a popular Zambian clothing item.

During dinner, the Poetice team surprised us with ice-cream and a highlight slideshow to recap our memories from this week. We have been blessed to work alongside an amazing organization that has been such an encouragement to us.  Their incredibly strong leaders have played a significant role in helping us grow in our faith. These leaders led us in a time of worship to close our night and our time in Choma, Zambia. We are excited about the mission Poetice has for the communities in Choma, and we look forward to praying for them and hearing about their impactful work. Thank you Poetice!

Paige and Andrew



Smiles Bright Like the Sun

THE SUN WAS SHINING AND WE WERE SO EXCITED TO START OUR DAY!!!! Prior to heading out for the day, we had a delicious breakfast prepared by the gracious hands of Rose. Our first adventure of the day was visiting a village for water filter demonstrations and fellowship with the community members. As we arrived, some women from the village had prepared a welcoming dance routine for our group. We all appreciated this from afar, but were quickly encouraged to join them in dancing and praise. Although all members of our group failed to master the variety of dance steps, it was an amazing experience and brought a smile to our faces. A children’s choir also welcomed us with a song. Following the welcome, we did a series of brief introductions and transitioned into serving the children their breakfast. As we walked to the school house for breakfast, each of us had a swarm of kids clinging to our arms. While the children were eating breakfast, we had the opportunity to sit with them and enjoy their joyful presence. Their smiles are so radiant and contagious. We moved right into the water filter demonstrations after the children had finished their breakfast. Similar to our experiences from the last few days, this was a really humbling experience. The authentic joy that was evident when seeing the pure water drain out of the filter was eye-opening.

The next portion of our day included a series of home visits where two women graciously welcomed us into their homes. They were willing to be vulnerable with us, sharing us intimate details regarding their past. We were fortunate to be able to share a number of verses and words of encouragement, followed by prayers of praise and support from members of our group. It was a powerful experience, and we could feel God’s presence in each of the homes that we were welcomed into.

We were ecstatic for the final portion of our afternoon that included another visit to a village, where we did another water filter demonstration and led a sports clinic. Following the water filter explanation, we gathered the children in the field and separated them into groups for stations. This was an uplifting experience to share our love for sports with the children. They were all really engaged and couldn’t help but have big smiles on their faces. At the end of the clinic, we gathered as an entire group and played a large game of sharks and minnows. As you may imagine, this could be described as organized chaos. Following lots of heart-felt hugs, we began our journey back to the Sports Outreach compound.

At devotions tonight, we took some time to affirm one another and share the love. We have quickly become a tight-knit family. During the remainder of the trip, we look forward to continuing to see how our relationships continue to grow and the ways in which God works.

With love,
H & E (aka Hayden and Erica)

Countless Blessings

This morning we were blessed with the opportunity to attend New Foundation Church located on the Sports Outreach compound. In this church, we continued to be welcomed wholeheartedly as we have experienced throughout this trip. It is hard to find words to describe how powerful this service was. We were inspired by their passionate worship and love for God.  Our feet were moving and our hands were raised in the air, as we praised God alongside our brothers and sisters in Christ. Daniel, Noah, and Erica had the opportunity to speak in church and share about part of their walk with God. We pray that the people in the church were encouraged and blessed by these testimonies. It reminds us that even though we come from different places and backgrounds, we are all God’s children and serve Him.

After church, some of the Sports Outreach staff gave us a tour of the Koro Farm. It was amazing to see the work they are doing to grow their ministry. We had the opportunity to visit the vocational school. This school provides the girls from Christine’s House an opportunity to learn skills to help them when they return to their communities. Inside the school, there was jewelry and hand-sewn crafts. We were able to purchase some of these to help support their ministry. On this tour, we also got a glimpse of the future aspirations of Sports Outreach. They are in the process of building two villages to house refugees and girls who are transitioning out of Christine’s House. We will be praying for Sports Outreach, and we’re excited to see how they continue to grow in the coming years.

In the afternoon, we dedicated our time to interacting with communities through the distribution of water filters. We also spent this time using sports as an opportunity to share God’s love with others. It was such a joy to see the faces of the people in the villages when they saw pure, clean water coming out of the filter. There was so much beauty in watching lives be changed through these filters. We also shared the message that the dirty water is a representation of our lives without Jesus. When we accept Him into our lives, He acts as the filter, making us clean and pure. In the second village, we ran a sports clinic for the children. Our team was overjoyed with the experience of sharing our love for sports with the youth in this community. Seeing radiant smiles and receiving countless hugs was a humbling experience. Joy truly abounds in all aspects of their lives.

We are truly blessed by the opportunity to be here in Uganda. Our team continues to deepen our relationships with one another and lift each other up. God orchestrated this team beautifully. Although our time in Uganda is not as long as we expected, God has remained faithful. We are overwhelmed by how we have seen God working in our lives. By connecting with local communities, He has reminded us of his unending love for His people. Your prayers and support mean the world to us. In the coming days, we will remain open to what God has in store for us.

1 Peter 4:7-11
“The end of all things is near. Therefore be alert and of sober mind so that you may pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Christ Jesus. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.

Ali and Erica

Being the Church

We had a full day in Zambia that started with church this morning. We all really enjoyed worshiping with the Poetice church body. They started a church at the base in April, and so the long term missionaries and local community members who worship there welcomed us into their family. We sang songs in both English and Tonga, which was a treat. Then John, who is one of the leaders of Poetice, gave the message. He spoke with great passion about what it means to be the church. He emphasized Jesus’ commission to transform whole communities together, not on our own. We all walked away impacted by the experience to seek to live more fully into being the church together.

After church we got the opportunity to distribute water filters to the members of the church who do not have access to a clean water supply. A majority of the members receiving water filters were under 18 and have a big role in leading their families. We helped the youth assemble the Sawyer water filter by drilling a hole in their bucket, showing them how to assemble the filter, and teaching them how to clean out the filter. The dirty water turning clean through the water filter was used as a metaphor for life with Jesus. Our life before Jesus is like the dirty water, cloudy and sinful, but in giving our lives to Jesus He makes us clean and pure.

The rest of the day consisted of playing sports with the youth. They came to the Poetice base, and we ran stations with all different sports. One highlight for today was that we introduced American football. We realized just how hard it is to teach, yet still it was really fun to watch them play! Alaina taught yoga, which was a new experience for most of them. It was really relaxed and playful. They had a lot of fun. After we finished playing with them, some of us got to walk the youth back home. Seeing the homes that our new friends live in was an eye-opening experience. When at Poetice, it can be easy to forget what life outside the base can be like. This experience showed our team that you can have a lot of joy without having a lot of material possessions. All that you need is Jesus. The Zambians that we met invited us into their homes and were great hosts. The generosity to visitors in Zambia is incredible, and I believe that our society could learn a lesson or two from Zambian hospitality.

Our day finished as most all of them do: dinner together, debriefing, and games. The evenings are special times for our team to bond and share our hearts with one another. Today we began reflecting on what the Lord has done in us during this time and how we want to take that home. We are all intentionally seeking to let Jesus change us as we return back to “normal” life. Prayers for saying goodbye to the kiddos tomorrow and for the Lord to solidify what He’s done in us would be appreciated. J

In Christ,

Victoria and Brant

Communities: Poetice, Mwapona, Armour’s

What an amazing Saturday it was in Zambia! We started off the day by welcoming youth from Armour’s soccer teams, Kabanana, and Mwapona into Poetice to participate in our first ever field day. The youth we invited were ages 10 and above, and we wanted them to experience field day just as we do back home: a fun day of competition, celebration, and recognition of the many different strengths and abilities. They participated in many activities that ranged from kicking a shoe as far as they could to standing long jump to dodgeball throwing accuracy. We had 10 total activities, and it was a joy to see everybody having so much fun.

After the activities in the morning, we split them up into three groups for crafts, lunch, and hearing the Word. The crafts were face paint, bracelet making, and a fingernail painting station. They loved each of them and participants of all ages were able to leave with a face paint creation, a new bracelet, and their nails freshly painted.

The message station was really impactful for many different reasons. Two of our team members, Josh and Victoria, shared parts of their stories from their faith walks based on what they felt the youth could resonate with. It was great to see how engaged the kids were in their stories and how much they appreciated their honesty and vulnerability. After stories, the message that was shared was Matthew 13: 1-23, The Parable of the Sower. The unique thing about this parable is that it connects to the name of our program: SEED.  It relates a seed’s situation and type of growth to our journey in our relationship with Jesus.

When it was time for kids to go home, the Poetice leaders paired 2-3 of our team members with 2 Poetice youth leaders to take us back into their community and visit their homes. The Poetice youth were so excited to share their community with us, and it meant a lot that they were so welcoming. All of us got to see more of what Mwapona is like and a small glimpse into what their lives are like when they are at home. While walking through the community, we were able to gain perspective not only on their lifestyle, but also led to some questions about our own culture and how we go about life.  The people have so much life and joy and it challenged us to think about how we could channel a similar mindset into our daily lives. Being in the community reminded us that even though our countries’ cultures are different, the culture of God’s kingdom is all the same.  It doesn’t matter the amount of material possessions in your house, it matters that you have Jesus.

Following these visits, we all went to cheer on the oldest Armour’s soccer team. One meaningful part of the game was that many of the guys playing still had on face paint and stickers they put on during field day. The game was really fun to watch (Armour’s won 3-1), and this time was filled with really good opportunities to engage in conversations with each other and some of the youth who just opened up their homes to us.

One thing that we have been doing as a team every night after dinner is a debrief session. During this time, we have open and honest conversation about the day and how we saw God. During our debrief this evening, most all of us mentioned something that stuck out during the home visits in Mwapona.  Whether it was being impacted to put less emphasis on materiel things back home, or to put more value in being welcoming, hospitable, and generous to anyone God calls to be our neighbor.  We could see that God was present there and that Poetice is having incredible impact in this community.

We are excited for the rest of the week and can’t wait to see what’s in store!

CJ and Morgann

Transforming Lives, Traveling to Gulu

We began our day with a trip to the Sports Outreach Chess Academy. The building was about a 30 minute bus ride through downtown Kampala. This was a unique experience for our team that allowed us to learn and ask questions of the coaches, trainers and chess students. Though the duration of time we stayed was brief, the impact was real, the work God is doing in the lives of the chess students was obvious. After boarding back onto the bus, one of the chess coaches Richard, graciously gave our team a tour around the slum of Katwe and we saw where portions of “The Queen of Katwe” was filmed. We then embarked on our journey to Gulu, a village roughly 7 hours from the city of Kampala.  We traveled by bus along paved roads for a majority of the journey and had a lot of time to share stories and grow closer as a team. We got to see the Nile river, some monkeys, and even some ambitious baboons that would jump on moving cars.

We arrived at the Sports Outreach Center and were immediately welcomed.  We gathered as a group and did brief introductions before breaking off into the guys playing a soccer game and the girls spending time with Christine’s House of Anointing.  Christine’s House is a group of women who serve younger girls who are facing difficult situations at home.  Here they are fed, given a place to sleep, ministered, counseled, and embraced with a loving and supportive community.  The girls in Christine’s House were so joyful and welcoming, even though they have been through so much.  There are a couple girls who have recently given birth to precious and healthy babies and a few who are expecting.  We got the opportunity to hear a couple of testimonies from the girls and how Christine’s House has helped transform their lives.  It was so powerful how open the girls were just right off the bat, sharing their stories to complete strangers.  They trusted us and it showed how desperate they are to be loved and to show God’s love.  We have been asked to pray for peace, provisions and enlightenment in the girl’s lives.

The guys attempted to run some futbol, or soccer passing drills with the kids and struggled through the language barrier and lack of skills.  However, the ability to use hand motions, eye contact or facial expressions, and demonstrations allowed us to connect with the kids and have fun running simple practice drills.  This transitioned to a full-fledged 10 on 10 soccer match that brought out the fast paced, energetic side of two golfers and a washed-up baseball player. It was such a joy to compete and spend time with the kids that ended up turning into some education on the importance of stretching, and devotions. It was moving when we transitioned from working as a soccer team, to sharing how we can all work together on God’s team, supporting each other and most importantly, loving one another.

In the coming days, we will be sharing in church, ministering through water filter distribution, and interacting with younger kids in the community by running sports camps.  We are so blessed to be in Gulu and have this opportunity to served alongside the beautiful people of Uganda.  Thank you for your continuous thoughts and prayers.

Noah, Maddie, and Colleen

Macha Road Trip

After breakfast this morning we boarded 2 buses to head to a village called, Macha, which was a couple hours away. One of the buses carried our SEED team while the other bus carried the Armour’s soccer teams who were scheduled to play 2 teams from Macha. After arriving in Macha we helped serve alongside Messiah College who is partnering with a sports ministry program called, Push The Rock. Before the soccer games started, we helped run six different sports stations such as frisbee golf, relays and dodgeball with the Messiah College students. After the stations, we gathered with the kids and were able to watch CJ share some of his testimony with the children. Following this, it was time for the soccer games to begin. We had the opportunity to watch a lot of the Armour’s students we have been working with compete in the games. It was a great experience to see the joy they brought to the game, the skill and effort they showed, and the celebrations that ensued after a goal. During the games, we also got to play a variety of sports and games with the local kids who were there. Messiah brought some different sports equipment from us, so was great to do some things like lacrosse, and badminton.  To end our time in Macha, our SEED team played an intense volleyball match against the Messiah College team and some of their Zambian friends which was a lot of fun.

Today we had the opportunity to pour into the relationships we have already built and also meet a lot of new people. It was awesome to see another team of American college students doing the same type of sports ministry that we are doing. We were able to connect with these students as well and have a great time (Except when they beat us in a heartbreaking best of 5 volleyball series). Overall, this day was a great example of what being a Christian athlete should look like. Many of us had the opportunity to connect with individual children and even some of the students from Messiah on a deeper level by spending a lot of time with them, talking with them, and exchanging lots of questions. Despite being from different parts of the world it is clear that we all love the same God and that we are united as one body as followers of Christ!

Josh and Andrew

A Rich Faith

We arrived safely last night at 10:00PM in Entebbe and afterwards we took a short bus ride to our hotel in Kampala. This morning we were served breakfast with a few members of the Sports Outreach team. Following this, we headed to their facility just outside of Kampala to continue the rest of our day.

Upon arrival, the first thing we participated in was a devotional service with all of the members of the Sports Outreach community. This included prayer, worship songs, and a short homily from Leviticus, 2 Kings, and Mark covering the topic of leprosy. Simon Peter, one of the pastors at the compound, explained how each of us have something eating away at us, disconnecting us from God. The only way to be cleansed is through the grace and mercy of Christ in faith. After the service, we were able to tour the ministry to see the good works they have now and their plans for the future

Then we travelled as two groups to a number of homes to understand the stories of families in different communities and surround them in prayer. These visits revealed the authenticity and graciousness of Ugandan culture. It also was a clear indication of the strong faith that many individuals had in weak circumstances.

The team at Sports Outreach cooked us a delicious lunch and we then went to a community called Kawempe for more home visits and a Sawyer water filter demonstration. In introducing the water filters, we were able to connect the filtration of the dirty water, to the reconciliation of Christ’s death on the cross to make us clean and pure. Upon receiving the water filters, community members were more worried about sharing the precious gift of clean water with their neighbors rather than its use for their own families. A separate group went into the heart of the community during the demonstration to visit a few more homes. During this trip, the bond between families and individuals in the slum were unlike any relationship we had ever seen. The dependence and trust of people made the love of Christ evident and alive in the same way as during the water filter demonstration.

We returned to the hotel for a devotion and debrief where we could share how we saw God during our experiences today. The smiles of the Ugandan community touched us along with their authenticity and vulnerability during home visits. The graciousness of the people we came in contact with was telling of Christ’s love as well. Finally, we saw God in the faith-driven consistency of the actions and words of the Sports Outreach workers and people.

Tomorrow we embark on a 7-hour bus ride to Gulu for another aspect of Sports Outreach in Uganda. We ask for prayers for the people we will come in contact with, as well as those we shared fellowship with today. We want to continue to learn and understand how we can best teach and be taught in the communities we will serve.

Daniel, Olivia, and Hayden

Playing Sports and Growing Closer

Today was the first of three sport clinics with the Armour’s soccer teams (ages 10+). They eagerly flooded into the base for a day filled with training and learning new sports.  It also included education on health/nutrition and first aid, along with speed/agility and strength & conditioning. The Armour’s players were separated into their four teams (10 & 12U, 14U, girls team, and amateur team) and rotated through each station.

To split up the morning, all groups gathered in the worship center to receive a message from Poetice leaders and our coaches. The story of the Good Samaritan was shared and unpacked to help the kids understand how it is still relevant in our daily lives. The main point of this story was about giving selflessly, serving, and loving your neighbors. Our coaches connected this lesson to being a team member and how you can serve your neighbors (teammates and opponents) through encouragement.

In the afternoon, the teams had the opportunity to play ultimate frisbee, baseball/softball, volleyball, and dodgeball. It was amazing to watch how quickly each of the players could catch on to games. They are amazing athletes! After our fun afternoon, we all had time to come together as a large group once again and debrief about our day. We agreed encouragement was evident throughout the day. Whether it was a cheer, a high five, a simple smile, or holding someone’s hand, it was great to see them truly live into the lesson and supporting each other. It was awesome to hear how many remembered and understood what they learned in the morning stations and how the Good Samaritan story is applicable to our lives.

After a yummy traditional Zambian dish of Nshima, okra, and cabbage, we worshipped as a team. It was a powerful, uplifting time and continued to bond us closer. It is amazing how we have grown closer to God and to each other in these few days. God is good and we are excited to see what else He has in store for the rest of this trip!

With Love from Choma,

Alaina and Paige


Welcome to the blog. We’re excited to share with you what life in Zambia was like today. This morning we spent time with the leaders at Poetice. They shared some of their testimonies and what Poetice is all about. In one statement, Poetice exists to equip the body of Christ to seek justice. Jesus is everything and that is true here in Zambia, in America, and in all of the world!

Starting in the afternoon, around 300 kids filed into Poetice’s base to play games and hear about Jesus. We engaged in some lively games of soccer, football, frisbee, volleyball, baseball, freeze tag and duck duck goose. After a few hours of playing, we divided the kids into age groups for lesson time. Some groups went over following Jesus on the narrow path and some went over the roles of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

As we reflected on our day, our teammates all expressed their excitement about being able to visit the kids’ communities, as some of us got to walk them home after Kids Club today. It was an honor to be welcomed in, and we look forward to visiting again soon.

I (Tucker) saw God today in the beautiful differences and similarities in cultures. I was amazed at the way we could interact so easily through sport with children who may not have spoken English and who were raised on the other side of the world from us. God’s creation is so vast and beyond our understanding, and I was reminded of that today in the interactions I had with the kids in Zambia.

Today served as a reminder to me (Victoria) that Jesus is the only foundation upon which we can build our lives. He changes everything and is the only one worthy of our all. This is true for every single person no matter our context. I saw this truth in playing with the kiddos here because amidst physical needs they may have, they are rich in Christ. I also saw my great spiritual poverty and the truth that every moment I am desperate for Christ, including being able to love these children well. Today was our first day with kiddos and it was a great privilege to become friends with them as we ministered to one another.

Thanks for reading!! We love you all.

For His glory,

Tucker, Vic & ZamFam (our team nickname)

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