There and Back Again

What a whirlwind the last few days have been! After our wonderful concert with the Sabah Theological Seminar Chorale on Tuesday night, we woke up bright and early on Wednesday for our trip into the “interior.” This journey involved a six-hour car ride up, down, and around the mountains of Malaysia including long stretches of unpaved roads. On our way, we were provided a very generous lunch by several members of a local church. After driving through the jungle in four-wheel drive trucks, we finished our trip with a thirty-minute boat ride down the Pagalungan river to a village of the Murut people. We met several of the village leaders, including the pastor, and had our first daily ritual of “bathing” in the river. “Bathing” in Pagalungan involves taking a boat a little ways down the river while using soap and shampoo in the water while in our bathing suits. It is a life-changing experience. On Thursday we had a full day of teaching and interacting with our hosts as we taught workshops on keyboard, guitar, voice, worship leading, and gongs, a traditional instrument of village. Most of the participants were children and youth who did not speak English, so we worked with translators to teach them and learn several local songs together. The workshops culminated in an evening concert which involved all of the participants as they demonstrated what they had learned throughout the day. It was an amazing time of worship and fellowship as we all shared our gifts of music and songs. On Friday we made the return journey back to Kota Kinabalu, retracing our steps back the windy roads. We were surprised by another generous lunch by the same church as Wednesday, as they graciously offered us a special delicacy: wild boar.

The team at St. Simon’s Catholic Church with our hosts.


After we arrived back in Kota Kinabalu, we had the great privilege to visit St. Simon’s Catholic Church. There we met with the local parish priest, the bishop, and several members of the music ministry of the church. We were again overwhelmed by their generous provision of dinner and enjoyed great conversations as we exchanged stories and shared different perspectives. We all crashed early Friday night as we were exhausted by traveling of the last few days. Now it is another beautiful Saturday morning here at Sabah Theological Seminary as we hold a day of workshops for church musicians from around the area.

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3 comments on “There and Back Again

  1. Kathleen Wright says:

    You have left a description of your trip that makes me feel almost as if I were with you. Thank you. Kathleen Wright

  2. Cameron T. says:

    So glad to have an update! Thank you for the pictures!

  3. Sandy Zeek says:

    It is so wonderful to hear about the three-way blessing going on: the Lord is blessing y’all, y’all are blessing fellow musicians there, and the believers and musicians there are blessing y’all! The food pictures were incredible . . . there is such diversity and it looks delicious.

    Counting the days until Rebekah (and the rest of the team, too) are back home in Texas. May each of you fulfill the plan and purpose the Lord has for you in His time and in His way.

    In His service, Sandy Zeek (Rebekah’s Mom)

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