Husband. Dad to 5. Student Ministry Pastor. Follower of Jesus. Yatta yatta.


Sorry this blog is not updated as much as I would like. But this is crazy on the Ugandan side. Everything takes forever. It took me 2 hours today to get our team checked in for their final flights and that was using 2 computers in an internet cafe simultaneously.

We are having a BIG huge party for the kids today at the orphanage and tonight we are going to a big HUGE send off meal with just our team before we send them home first thing in the morning. Wow, seems like just yesterday we got here. I’m staying behind with my family for another 10 days… but I want you to know… I’m sending part of my heart with them.

What an amazing experience this has been. Our students have stepped up HUGE. Mandy says that we are the best group she’s ever hosted. That is a big deal because Mandy doesn’t blow smoke and because we were really praying that we would be a blessing to her. What a joy it is to know that prayer has been answered.

We are sending everyone home healthy from my end… so if they are sick upon arrival, blame British Air! I’m not sending them home the same however. Each of us is profoundly changed and has journaled specific action steps for our lives post this Ugandan experience. We will be sharing our journal entries and our checking on one another at one final team meeting we will have in late september/early august. It will hopefully be filled with Ugandan food, prayer, an amazing compilation of all our pictures. (together we have taken several thousand and I’ve already whittled the top 500 out into a dvd which we have shown twice- once to our group and the night workers and once the children and day staff. It’s a big hit!!) We’re going to create a book of all our best pics for our team and give everyone a CD and DVD of our pictures along with a DVD movie of our best film footage. That will be quite the dinner. I can hardly wait.

Below are my favorite individual pics of people I have come to love on this trip:

Michael walking in a village with some of the locals after some “hut to hut” conversations about Jesus.

Sarah sharing joy with some kids in a village outreach crusade we went to one night.

My wife talking with a local man in a village we visited.

Suzie revisiting motherhood in the infants section of the orphanage.
Tegan looking like Jesus in our first village we visited by boat.

Erica loving on a local orphan boy. He is so happy to be loved.

Jake running from the local kids in the village. Many of them had never seen a blonde haired child of Jake’s size.
Jessica found her niche loving on kids in the village always hand in hand with several.
Julia expressing true joy with the local orphan boy during afternoon park time.
Kyle getting his hair pulled by an orphan enjoying a shoulder ride.
Malia and an orphan girl becky- who you might be hearing a lot more about.
AJ showing some local village kids their picture on a camera- something almost all have never seen.
Blaze caught this out of the lake as we drove past. He is going to be a plant fisherman evidently.
Dave won the competition he started for the longest single potato peel in a competition with the local ladies at the orphanage who prefer speed to art when feeding 65 orphans 3x a day.

Hannah dancing with some kids at the village outreach night.

Jackie riding a bike full of orphans- the kids love these things. Jackie’s legs do not.

TJ playing with a kid on the orphanage trampoline

My son Tyler with an orphan boy- paul or ben. I can’t remember which.

Tyler swing a boy at park time.

Me… playing “one of these things is not like the other” with the village kids.

Our host Mandy running with bubbles at the village outreach

One of our interpreters Moses.

Naked butts at the orphanage. Shower time is outside -car wash style- so nakedness is regular here.
Richard- another interpreter and local village pastor who I grew to really love.

Timothy- a local pastor and planter of over 60 churches around the islands and shores of lake victoria. He has quite the story and has become like a brother to me. I so loved my time with this man and expect our paths to cross again in the future.

Last but not least, this is Sheila- she works at the orphanage and is on the village outreach team and everyday went to teach the children. She is a very gifted teacher, but if I was keeping up with the weird pictures thing, this one would have made the list. They are teaching these African kids Bible stories with flash cards of white Jesus and white Adam and Eve. I need to buy them some culturally appropriate flash cards…. last thing we need is an entire generation of African jungle kids thinking God made white people first.
Ok… not sure when I’ll post next. May be a week or so- sometime after my safari with my kids and sisters family and my parents. I’ll be praying these students home. Please continue to pray for my family and for our team. We’ve sown lots of seeds here, pray that they are watered by the Holy Spirit and that God’s Kingdom is expanded through our work here and the influence these last 2 weeks have had on each of us too.


  1. Brian,

    Thank you so much for giving these kids this amazing experience. You have blessed the orphans and the villages you have visited. But you have also ministered to our hearts through the love that is so apparent in these pictures and through your words. I wept with joy at all of the pictures and can’t wait to hear Tyler tell us himself what it all means to him.
    God bless your family on the remainder of your trip. We’ll keep praying for all of you.

    The Gates Family

  2. Anonymous says:

    Ditto to Lisa’s note Brian. I couldn’t hold back the tears. I am so overwhelmed at God’s graciousness in giving you the vision for this trip, providing for it, and blessing the team, the orphanage, and the villages beyond every prayer and expectation. We’ll also be praying everyone home and praying for your your family’s vacation, get some rest. 🙂 Kristen

  3. Blaze's mom says:

    You have changed lives and hearts, and I thank you. Will pray that your family stays healthy the rest of the journey. God has really Blessed us. Kelly

  4. Brian – thank you for posting these awesome pictures. My mom, sister and I were viewing them this morning and we were all in tears. It’s so moving to see that you and the team were able to be “Jesus with skin on” to the people of Uganda. Okay, okay . . . I was crying because I missed my girl, tool! But it was also a feeling of pride and joy . . . almost giving us a sense of being there with you all. It’s hard to verbalize exactly what I feel, but I’m sure the feeling is mutual to all who have been following your blog. It sounds as though we will be hearing story upon story of what God accomplished through you and IN YOU all! I’m sure Malia’s calling has been solidified . . . maybe that’s why the tears . . . hmmm!

    Thanks for sending them home HEALTHY! We were all concerned there for a while! Praise God everyone is doing well now.

    Praying for you and your family and the rest of the time you have there . . . enjoy your “vacation”!

    The Lacangan Clan

  5. Anonymous says:

    Brian, Wow! Those photos are truly touching. The love of the Lord shines through the smiles of the children. God bless you for allowing our students to have such a wonderful, life changing experience.

    God bless you,

  6. Linda Brangwynne says:

    Brian, I stand by everything Lisa said. You have led our students well. I am forever greatful for your leadership and compassionate heart.

  7. Anonymous says:

    I am a friend of Michael’s mother, I live in Chicago and have been following the blog…….I LOVE it! I too was in tears looking at the pictures of the students with the children at the orphanage, I have always wanted to do that, but I don’t know if I could leave……what an amazing experience for these young people…….thank you for sharing and enjoy the rest of your trip!
    Arabella Perez

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