Friday, February 27, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 8

Here are some more of James Pictures from the trip
The local boys
Monkey times
kids going richtor
Ollie and Tonya Hidalgo (our crew & new close friends)
James and Elijah (orphan we had priveledge to hang with)
Setting up Reflector
Cutest kids in the world.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 7

Photos by James Chapman:
Today we got up and went to a school on the east side of Freetown and interviewed a pastor named Tamba.  He's a great big guy with a huge heart and a deep voice.  when he speaks, people listen.  He's started a school that has 125 kids and they greeted us today with songs and performances- at one point two little girls came in dressed in traditional African garb and presented James with a bouquet of flowers...  Afterward, we filmed at a Wharf where there is a community living off of a mangrove swamp, harvesting timber and fishing the sea.  We visited one of our guides houses and her mother prepared us a traditional Africa dish made up of rice and Cassava leaves with fish.  it looked like Kale but tasted like Tai- really really good!...  then we traveled back to the east side of town and filmed a huge cotton tree (one of the areas iconographic gigantic trees that grows in the region) as well as in a military grave.  we made it home safely and did dinner, prayed and are getting ready for bed.   :) good day- good night.  PS. i miss my wife!!!!!  (bad)

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 6

Rev. Clarkson
Photo: James Chapman 
Today we got up, and met with a woman pastor (Rev. Clarkson) who has a church with over two thousand members here in Freetown.  She is such a Godly woman with so many stories about Gods' provision during the war.  She told us of times during the fighting when she held prayer meetings for the rebels, revivals during the fighting, and even had engagements with the president.  She described one event where they were holding a revival meeting right in the middle of a field during a battle as buildings were burning all around them and bombs were dropping on houses.   She grew sick of all the brutality and bloodshed and asked all that were there to pray for God to not allow the bombs to explode as they hit the ground in the surrounding community.   Sure enough, reports came in over the next week that all the bombs that were being dropped in here area from helicopters were hitting the ground and not detonating.  The people in the community found over one hundred of them scattered around her town and officials had to come and carry them away!!!!   She told us many stories like this about the war and the people's adherence to God's word, HIS FAITHFULNESS, AND command to love those who are our enemies.  many times, soldiers would come to her door to pillage for food and with the possibility they could aimlessly shoot her.   She said she'd greet the young boys recognizing they were just little kids with weapons and call them gentlemen, invite them in and immediately share the love of Christ with them as she fed them a meal.  Within minutes they'd call her mam, and show her respect, many eventually repented right there in her living room.  crazy stories she had.....
  It was an honor to hear her heart for the lost, even people who murdered and hunted down her people.  super heavy reality of people actually living out there faith during the war.  I know I've never had to experience things like this, but if i ever did, hearing stories from Pastor Clarkson reminds me that,  in Christ, we have no fear.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 4

Started out meeting with pastors in east side of town where the crusade will be taking place.  we shot around their and went out into the streets to film Broll and establishings of Freetown.  Getting to know the area.  1.8 million people in this city.  60 percent Muslim, 30% Christian and according to everyone here, the two get along very well with no hostility between them living side by side.  There are a lot of Muslims converting to Christ because of the mutual respect shown to one another.  cool to see that.  Actually thought coming here would be dangerous in some way and it's turning out to be one of the safest, warmest places to travel to in all of Africa.   

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 3

photos: James Chapman
Did camera tests for interviews, started shooting broll, establishings and connected in the evening time with some of hte local kids who are the future of Sierra Leone.  We photographed them overlooking their town and had a great time getting to know their interests in playing tennis and wha they learn in school.  we read thru one of their home economics notebooks they had written notes on and talked about the upcoming exam they had on monday.  I realy enjoyed hanging with them and filmng/ photographing them with James.  

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 2

today was production meeting all day.  great to open in prayer, went over some scripture in zeph and proverbs about giving voice to the voiceless and establishing justice.  great to fellowship with and get to know the crew before we start shooting.  we went over the script/ shot lists/ and potential characters and met with the local pastors to hear their perspective.  they are our eyes and ears to find the people who's stories will be told. They are so friendly (Pastor Tamba M"Bayo and Pastor Favour Marah- they are such wise men.  also another pastor who i cant pronounce/remember his name but he has the biggest smile in all of Africa- lights up the whole room- he wears bright yellow and doesn't stop smiling- he told us of a horrible story today from the war that he and another pastor woman led a woman to the Lord and as soon as she finished praying to receive Christ, they heard a gun shot in the distance, turned to the woman and she was dead from the shot.  he said he has story after story of really heart wrenching encounters from the war (he was in the military himself, so he saw a lot of really gnarly stuff.)   So, overall, day two was a lot of planning, prayer and conversation.  I'm getting to know Tonya and her husband Ollie really well (camera operators) and James (director).  for them, this is a great opportunity to gain experience working/ shooting/ producing a video in a third world shooting environment and are so excited to learn and gain experience.  I'm missing Jess already but have skype set up and have been keeping in touch with her throughout my days here at the hotel.  tonight, there are people from the Us embassy having a party at our hotel... interesting...

Friday, February 20, 2009

Sierra Leone, Africa DAY 1

day 1: 36 hrs of commute, met with first group: James, Greg, Tonya and her husband Ollie.  trips gone super smooth so far, seems like every turn we take in the travel, there is a God send.  from the guy "moosa" who helped us with our 12hr layover in Senegal, to the 87yr old pastor from NC traveling back to his native home, Sierra Leone.  It's been really confirming, how easy the trips been going that I'm supposed to be here.  I already love the people.  we met tonight with about 8 different African pastors.  we had dinner with them at our hotel and they are very welcoming.   one of the drivers who took us from the Hovercraft (yes we took a hover-craft from the airport to the mainland) he is from the "village life/ bush."  he hunts and before this trip is over, i made him consider to take me pig hunting.  he smiled and didn't believe me I'd go.  i told him i have a photo i need to show him from NC...  he he...  first very looooong day- now over- going to bed, tomorrow is rest day and regroup, make plans for the shoot and chill/prayer time.  good night.  -nic
photos: James Chapman