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Saturday, August 24, 2013

US Air Force, eHarmony, a double knee replacement and an 80-year olds birthday party at Project Canaan

On August 26th, 1933 Jere Scott was born in San Antonio, Texas.  It was impossible for his father and mother think or know that when Jere turned 80-years old he would be celebrating on the top of a mountain in Swaziland, Africa.

Why is he doing that? Because he is on Project Canaan designing and building the toddler bunk beds for the children who live at the El Roi Home for Abandoned babies.

Jere is the best example that I can give of someone who wants to “finish well”.  When he arrives at the Throne of God or “Pearly Gates” as some say, he wants to have given his all to the very end of his life, and that is just what he is doing.  This blog is dedicated to Jere Scott and great example he is to all of us.  Please keep reading, you will be inspired.

The first 80 years that Jere has been alive have not been boring.  He served in the United States Air Force for many years and was in the Korean War as well as the Vietnam War.  After that he spent 15 years in Japan as an Air Traffic Controller Instructor, which is where he learned to speak Japanese and gained his love for Asian Cuisine.

Jere became a Pastor later in life spent 20 years building churches in Alaska with his wife Peggy.  After tragically losing Peggy to Alzheimers Disease, Jere decided that he was not ready to be alone and joined That is where he met Janet in March 2004.  Nine days after meeting Janet “on line”, Jere proposed marriage.  Thirty days later Jere landed in Honolulu, Hawaii at 8:30AM to meet Janet face-to-face for the first time.  At 4:30PM that same day, April 9, 2004, Jere and Janet Scott became husband and wife.

In July 2005 Ian and I met Jere and Janet Scott at the Lugogo Sun Hotel in Swaziland.  They had come with their church, First Presbyterian, in Hawaii on an 11-day Heart for Africa volunteer service trip.  We became fast friends and since meeting them we have served together in Swaziland, Malawi and Kenya.  They typically commit 6-8 weeks each year to come and serve alongside us, and their help has been invaluable. 

Jere has been a part of every building project in the 3 African countries that we have worked on. He designed, helped construct and personally outfitted the Kufundza Carpentry Center with carpentry equipment on Project Canaan.  Jere has also designed and built the cribs that the babies sleep in at El Roi and the new toddler bunk beds that are being built for the Toddler home.  His creative thinking, his desired to minimize waste, but optimize efficiency has kept those working with him on their toes at all times J

Oh, did I mention that Jere is diabetic, has lost the sight in his right eye, has had both knees replaced … TWICE!? And, as you may have guessed, is turning 80-years old on Monday, August 26th, 2013.

Why am I writing about Jere Scott today?  Because he inspires me to “keep on keepin’ on” (as my friend Rose Smith says), even when times are hard and nothing seems to go right.  Jere is on his knees (the new titanium ones) for our family and for Heart for Africa on a daily basis and we treasure his prayers and words of encouragement.   Jere makes me want to give all I have to give for as long as the Lord allows me to serve Him.  Jere has not retired, and he plans to do all he can with what he has been given until the moment he is taken on to heaven.  May his actions inspire you to do the same.

Tonight we are hosting Jere’s 80th birthday party on our patio with a few other friends who love the Scott’s as we do.  We will have good food, many good laughs and hear a lot of stories as we listen to Hawaiian music under the African sky.

Live from Swaziland … Happy 80th Birthday Jere Scott!

PS - if you want to celebrate Jere’s life and give him a wonderful birthday gift, feel free to purchase one of the bunk beds that he is making for the children.  Each bunk costs $150 and that includes the materials to build it, a mattress, sheets and blankets.  You can do that today at:

We have a few photos tricks up our sleeve for Jere's party tonight.

1 comment:

  1. What a wonderful story, Janine! Thank you for taking the time each week to write your blogs. I always enjoy reading them! I wish Jere a Happy 80th and know that God will continue to use his talents!