Yesterday we had a Zoom call with a supporting church in Victoria. They asked us to tell them some of our unexpected positives and challenges during the COVID-19 restrictions. The Kimberley has been shut off from the rest of Western Australia and (because of the vulnerable Aboriginal communities) each of the Shires within the Kimberley have been closed. It has been both a blessing and a challenge in many ways because it has meant that the Kimberley has remained relatively COVID-19 free (apart from 17 cases which were contained and now recovered). It has been quiet, but peaceful with reduced crime and most people going about their business, even though some things are put on hold, such as the playgroup Linda usually attends and our home church meetings. Recently with the number of people allowed to meet going from 2 to 10, our home church group has started to meet outside, on our local jetty. Since we are a small group, this is workable for us (last Sunday we had just 9 of us).
Greg has been allowed to continue his role at the Mowanjum Community Resource Centre as tech/managing support twice/week. This has been a privilege because the community is locked down to outsiders (except for essential workers).
Community lockdown has meant that Linda is currently not able to visit Mowanjum for ladies Bible study or art group. In the interim I (Linda) have started an online Bible study group for women from all over the Kimberley. Twenty three ladies have joined the group, but not all have engaged. Even so it has been an encouraging time with some from afar joining in most weekdays and learning (some for the first time) about the Bible. It has been great to see some with more Christian experience encouraging those who are just starting to learn. Now that term 2 has started quite a few ladies from the group are back at work and are not free during the daytime to join. Being flexible and available for the times when people are open and free seems to be key.