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9 August 2012

Dear Friends,

I was up before the sun this morning with my first priority after saying Mass being to write a short newsletter to let you know that I am here in Prairie du Chien, WI. I arrived in Wisconsin in time to experience the excessive humid heat that blanketed much of the country. I knew that it was hot when I didn’t even want to be out on the water fishing, much less riding my bicycle. Some folks thought that that was my type of weather! We do live just south of the equator in Nkololo, Tanzania, but we are also about 4000 feet above sea level.

I began my yearly rounds of weekend church dates here in Prairie du Chien, followed by Spooner and including Shell Lake and Sarona. Then I traveled to Lodi and Dane, then up to Rhinelander and Pelican Lake, followed by Sun Prairie. Next weekend I will be in Waunakee in a very large, beautiful church. After that I can put my suitcase away as I will be here in Prairie du Chien at Holy Family parish that includes St. John and St. Gabriel churches. The final weekend will include Bloomington, Patch Grove, Cassville and Glen Haven. I give people updates on our progress in St. Peter Parish, Nkololo, and have a good video show on Sunday night. The attendance at the shows has been really great this year.

For many years my video show has been on VHS tapes. I knew that I was outdated and, finally, with a lot of help I was able to move to a video show using DVDs. I still need help to produce a good show but I am learning. I hope that DVDs don’t go out of style before I learn how to make a show myself. I don’t like to burden others. I appreciate any new technology that helps improve communcations.

I would like to say that we have received major funding to build our Songambele (move forward) Hospital, but such is not the case. What I am really desperate for now is just funding to build our 110 x 47-ft operating suites building. We are able to continue building it now because we have cement blocks on hand made long ago, as well as sand, water and cement. However, I simply do not have the funds to continue to build. We continue to pray that we will get substantial help very soon so that we continue work on this building. We have a Doctor in charge of our very active Health Center. During her internship she did many operations but now she is getting out of practice as we have no operating theater. Next year our MD will finish his studies so we will have two doctors but no O.R.–unless something happens soon to give us the means to continue to build and eventually equip the operating theaters. (Pictures of Dr. Helena and the foundation for the operating theater are attached.)

On a lighter note I can’t pass up the opportunity to let you know that fishing has been good. I only fish for bluegills and catfish. I love traveling several miles down the Mississippi River to the mouth of the Wisconsin River and then head up the Wisconsin looking for catfish. It is so quiet and peaceful there. Some days I never see another boat until I get back to the Mississippi. However now the water level is so low that navigation on the Wisconsin is very limited. We certainly should be praying for rain for many reasons.

I am looking forward to a Hausler family get together here at 1015 So 14th St. On 18 and 19 August I will be a bit busy as I will be talking at two churches on Saturday and Sunday. It will be especially great with relatives coming from Maryland. I am limited in my opportunities to travel so I appreciate having a family get together.

My cell phone is 608 306 1582, house phone is still 608 326 2970. Cell is best as I always carry it with me. Emails are welcome!

Love and prayers to all.

Fr. Paul Fagan

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