The Proper Posture for Mentoring

I try to shift my own thinking and self-perception when I’m in a situation where I’ve been brought in as the ‘expert’, especially if I’m foreigner.

It’s nice to come into a situation where you’re the expert–often treated with honor. It feels good. But I try to shift my own thinking and self-perception when I’m in a situation where I’ve been brought in as the ‘expert’, especially if I’m foreigner.

It may be true that I have special experience and gifting that separates me from the group in a significant way. However, my goal is that, by the end of our time together, we will have bonded together in such a way and I will have shared what I bring in such a way as to have broken down many of the invisible walls.

In the words of John Perkins, pioneer of Christian community development…

Go to the people.

Live among them.

Learn from them.

Love them.

Start with what they know.

Build on what they have.

But of the best leaders,

when their task is accomplished,

when their work is done . . .

the people will remark:

“We have done it ourselves.”

Maasai Worship – AISIAYAKIYE

The Maasai of East Africa share their stories in song. The En-Kata Choir in Tanzania sings their beautiful music to their Creator.

The Maasai of East Africa share their stories in song. The En-Kata Choir in Tanzania sings their beautiful music to their Creator. This is just one song of ten for which we will be helping to make music videos so the songs can be shared all over East Africa. Enjoy!

Click here to play the song: Aisiayakiye

AISIAYAKIYE  (I Will Serve You Lord)

I will serve You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

I will serve You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

Even if troubles come on earth

I will serve You

Even if the cattle are all gone

I will serve You

Even if I go without clothes

I will serve You

Even if severe hardships come

I will serve You

I will sing to You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

I will sing to You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

Even if severe hardships come

I will serve You

Even if I go without clothes

I will serve You

Even if the cattle are all gone

I will serve You

Even if malaria comes

I will serve You

I will sing to You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

I will sing to You, my God and Savior

I will not leave You, oh Father

I will not leave You, I will not stop serving You

The En-Kata Choir’s music is available on iTunes: Hope of the Maasai (Mautmaini Ya WaMaasai) by the En-Kata Choir

Song posted here courtesy of the MAPED and Kahawa Records

Muslim, Christian Artists Journeying Together

The Arts can serve as one of the most effective mediums to build bridges of respect, understanding, sharing and friendship between East and West, Muslims and Christians.

What if we really listened to each others’ stories, saw things through others’ eyes; would it make a difference in the world?

Here’s an encouraging arts festival, beginning Feb 3 in Cairo. I wish I could be there!

Caravan 

Encouraging East and West, Muslims and Christians, to journey together through the Arts

The Arts can serve as one of the most effective mediums to build bridges of respect, understanding, sharing and friendship between East and West, Muslims and Christians. Therefore, Caravan was started by Paul-Gordon Chandler as an informal catalyst to explore and encourage the interplay between Faith and the Arts—and more specifically within the context of interfaith, encouraging Muslims and Christians to journey together through the Arts…thereby seeing the Arts used to facilitate intercultural and inter-religious dialogue.

Check out the web site: Caravan Festival of the Arts

Nollywood – There is no life without Stories

In this TED presentation, a filmmaker looks at the key to healthy society … a thriving community of storytellers

Zambia-born filmmaker Franco Sacchi discusses Nollywood, Nigeria’s booming film industry (the world’s 3rd largest) in a TED talk in Arusha, Tanzania. He created a documentary that follows a number of Nigerian filmmakers and highlights the unique voice that filmmakers have found in this developing country. His insights into the role and power of visual storytelling are intriguing to me.

“Try to imagine a world where the only goal is food and a shelter, but no stories – no stories around a campfire…It’s meaningless… I think that the key to healthy society is a thriving community of storytellers. And I think that the Nigerian filmmakers really have proved this.

Storytelling is a commodity, a staple; there is no life without stories”

Sacchi says the key to a healthy culture is the storyteller. What are we doing to bring stories to our people? What kinds of stories are we telling – stories of despair, complicity, and oppression, or justice, hope, and freedom?

Tanzania Project Wrap-Up « Cross-Cultural Storytellers

Me, filming Maasai dancers for their music video

…our recent trip to Tanzania was everything we had hoped it would be. We planned, filmed, shot, and edited two complete music videos, with two different groups in two very different settings. And we were able to mentor and train folks there in production techniques that will help them create better media resources in the future.

Here’s a link to my more complete report (on our org site): Tanzania Project Wrap-Up « Cross-Cultural Storytellers.

How Mobile Technology is a Game Changer for Developing Africa

I find myself constantly amazed by how technology is permeating even the most remote places on the earth.

I’m think pretty well-traveled, but I find myself constantly amazed by how technology is permeating even the most remote places on the earth. Of course, there are still very isolated cultures, but our image of places like Africa may be way off.

I saw this article the other day that talks about how different organizations are using mobile phone technology for education and development work in Africa. You may be surprised at what they are doing in places that are far from urban tech centers.

Read about it here: How Mobile Technology is a Game Changer for Developing Africa.

Related to this, here’s a link to explain Why I’m Going To Tanzania (leaving today) from an earlier post here on this blog.