For those of you who’ve followed this Gonzaga-in-Zambezi blog over the years, you understand the Jesuit posture of accompaniment that animates our annual return to the town of Zambezi in Northwest Zambia.
For those of you who will are seeing it for the first time, some context. Since May 2007, Gonzaga University and the community of Zambezi have been co-authoring a story of solidarity, reciprocal learning, and personal growth. On Saturday, May 20, thirteen Zags and two faculty will join the 300+ who’ve gone before them in an earnest desire to operate at eye-level with this rural community in opposition to the “savior complex” of many short-term international tours. This year, long-time leader of the program, Dr. Josh Armstrong, will be remaining in Spokane, but his spirit animates every aspect of the program. Professor Kris Morehouse and I look forward to building on the foundation that he, past students, and previous faculty and staff have established.
We hope you will follow along during the next five weeks as Gonzaga students reflect daily on their experiences in Lusaka, Livingstone, Botswana and Zambezi. We invite you to comment below each blog post (we will read each one) and let us know what you are learning through our words. If you are an alumni of the program, we hope you will share a memory or greet a friend in Zambezi.
As we make final preparations, I’m inspired by these closing lines from “The Journey” by David Whyte, a poet near to Josh’s heart:
You are not leaving.
Even as the light fades quickly now,
you are arriving.
Wishing you all safe travels and open hearts! Can’t wait to hear all about your experiences in Zambia – I’ll be reading along!
Mwende bwino & mwende numutende, chindeles. Please greet everyone for me, especially all of the mamas ❤️ ndemifuluka, Katendi.
Jeff, so happy you get to be back. Have a wonderful trip!
Hi Zags and friends!
I am wishing you safe travels and welcome hearts as you embark on this experience. Remember to soak it all in and lean on each other in times of stress. Be well and say hi to the mamas for me!
Maddie—I miss you and love you. Love, peace and chicken grease 🙂
Audrey Buller ‘23
Zambezi 2022 group
Have a wonderful trip!
Love you Maddie!
So excited for all of you as you dive into the adventure of a lifetime. Best to all our friends and mamas. And a favor – can someone please post a pic of the library at Chilenga? I’d eager to see it!
How exciting! You’re on your way! May your hearts be open to learning and your minds be open when teaching. I hope this experience brings joy to all involved. Safe travels.
‘We are all the same’