19 March 2015

Returning to Uganda

We are going back!

Yes, you read that right. Three years after I left Uganda (almost to the day), Brian and I will go back together.

But let me back up. Here's our story:

As many of you know, I spent January 2011 - June 2012 living and working in Uganda. I was a librarian at a small theological college and I loved the opportunity to bring together so many of my interests and passions: community development, libraries, Africa. It was a dream come true in many ways. [This post still captures so many emotions from my experiences.]

Then, in June 2012, I moved back the US. I got married and moved to a new state. I floundered for a while, to be honest. I felt lonely and wasn't sure if I had a purpose. But eventually I found a job and life settled down. We made friends and I learned to navigate a new culture and city.

Life settled so much in fact, that this past summer we decided to buy a house. We made this decision the way we make most of our decisions: this feels right, the door is open, let's walk through. And as we started pursuing a house I felt that familiar tug in my heart -- the tug that says: but Africa! I worried that by buying a house we were 'tying' ourselves to Minnesota and I would never see my beloved Ugandan friends again.

But life has a funny way of working out. Brian and I were dreaming one night about how and when we might go back to Africa together. We didn't really know how, we just knew that someday we wanted to go back. And literally within a week of that conversation, a couple of my colleagues from Uganda emailed and asked if we would be willing to come back to work together on a library project for a couple months. Coincidence? I doubt it.

So, we find ourselves making the decision to go to Uganda for the summer the same way we decided to buy a house: the door is open and we're walking through!

Details at this point are fuzzy, at best. There are a lot of logistics to work out on a short time frame. But we are trusting that this is the right decision for us. A chance to go back, to reconnect with friends, to build new relationships, to learn. We will keep you posted along the way.

We are so grateful for this opportunity. Our hearts are full as we look ahead. There are so many emotions. And, to be honest, I am a bit sad to miss our first summer in our new house. But there is also a stirring in my heart. An excitement that makes me catch my breath: is this really happening? A whisper inside says: hold on, a new adventure is waiting.

Because Africa, libraries, community, and relationships...these are our things!

A picture of Brian and me at RTC when he came to visit in 2011.

P.S. I can't wait for:
  • The African Sun (it's different than the North American Sun, I swear)
  • Seeing old friends
  • African church services
  • Dirt roads
  • Making new friends 
  • Rolex (Ugandan street food)
  • Continuing to learn about how Ugandan culture and libraries go together


  1. I am excited for you and Brian and look forward to following your journey through blogs and/or emails. This is an exciting time and God will certainly bless your ministry. It is always amazing what God does when we are willing to yield ourselves and follow His leading.