More verbs

André and Aurélie Tousch, with Nathanaël, Laure-Élise, Lydianne and Abigaïl, are doing well and spending most of their time learning the language. Each day brings more verbs, more adjectives … and more nouns; proper nouns too. People in the village each have a western name they use when communicating in Pidgin – typically with outsiders. Names like Leo, Daniel, or Kris… But when they communicate in their own language, they use another name. Each person actually has two names: one given by the father and one given by the mother. Sounds like a good idea for parents who cannot agree on their child’s name but the real reasons are more involved. Now, as far as babies are concerned, it is simpler, just call him baby (“koo-soo” in the village language) he will be given a name later!!
The more time the Tousch family spends with the people, the more open they become about their personal beliefs and questions: why is there death, sickness and suffering?
Sad to say, death and sickness have been a very current topic in the area this past month: one young man died, and there is an outbreak of measles in the area.
A young man died suddenly when he went to a neighbouring village to visit, became ill in the evening and died in the morning. The local belief is that death is not natural; for this kind of death there has to be a supernatural cause. They believe death can be caused by a totem, an evil spirit, or a witch. Then they try to find the cause of the death. All of this is very sad. After three days of grieving, when everyone stopped working, the community gathered to bring the mourning to an end.
Measles is not well-known in western countries. All André and Aurélie knew about measles a month ago, was that they were immunised against it. Sadly, most people in PNG don’t benefit from such vaccinations and at the moment there is an outbreak of measles in the country. The outbreak has reached the area where André and Aurélie live, with many cases reported in neighbouring villages. The first case in the village was four weeks ago, followed by a few others, recently. There is a risk that many cases will show up in the next few weeks. Until now, only young, strong people have been affected and they all recovered well. However measles can be dangerous for children and older people. Please pray with them for the outbreak of measles to end.
As Aurelie and her co-worker, Nisae, spend time with the ladies, they are beginning to see the areas in their lives that are dominated by fear.
Pray for the missionaries as they live among the people that they would be able to show the light of Jesus Christ that they so desperately need.

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