Our visits have been invaluable in deepening the relationship and our mutual understanding. Many new conversations have been started following visits and new learning about each other.
We always stay at the incredibly welcoming Roman Catholic safina, or convent, in Bereko. The sisters look after us with great love and the greatest attention to detail. They also feed us very well. Sister Anna runs the safina and below is a picture of her with Father Magnus Lochbihler who established this and other convents for the Little Sisters of Mercy in remote locations in the north of Tanzania. The picture was taken at a church service in St Andrew's, Bereko..
Over the years, chronologically, our visits to each other have been as follows:
2006: First visit to Kondoa Diocese and Bereko to establish new link. Rev'd Chris Dobson
2007: Visit to Bereko, team from St Andrews and Paddock Wood Primary School
2008: Visit to Paddock Wood Primary School. Laurencia Mallya (Head Teacher Bereko Primary School) and Faith Msema, Primary School teacher and church elder
2008: Visit to Bereko from Mascalls’ students and teachers
2009: Visit to Bereko, team from St Andrews
2009: Visit to Bereko from Mascalls students and teachers
2010: Visit to Bereko from Mascalls students and teachers
2011: Visit to Bereko, team from St Andrews
2012: Visit by Rev'd Canon Bryan Knapp and the Ven Clive Mansell, to represent Rochester Diocese at consecration service for Bishop Given Gaula
2013: Visit to Bereko, team from church, Paddock Wood Primary School and Mascalls (teacher and student)
2014: Visit to Kondoa (incl. Bereko), Bishop James, Rev'd Rachael Knapp and others
2016: Visit to Bereko, team from St Andrews, Paddock Wood Primary School and scouts
This video was made by Mascalls students following their visit in 2009: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9EVgmN06QY
This video was made by Katie, a Mascalls Academy student, following the 2013 visit. All the music was recorded during the trip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ub4YWv7q8Jw
This PowerPoint presentation was given to Paddock Wood Town Council about the 2016 visit to Bereko: /Publisher/File.aspx?ID=185977
This article in the Rochester Diocese Link Magazine also says more about our 2016 visit: http://rochester.anglican.org/not-guests-or-friends-but-family.php
Our home while in Bereko, the safina.