Many people are familiar with the story of where the name Three Avocados came from, however, there’s another village in Uganda that holds an extremely special place in my heart: Mbulamuti (pronounced muh-boo-la-moo-tee…I think). On my first trip to Uganda in 2010, Mbulamuti captured my heart.
You see, Mbulamuti used to be a big deal. The train came straight through town and pick up the cotton crop. There’s an old warehouse, what used to be offices and nice houses, and an old grain mill. The old grain mill is now the church. And this is what it looks like today:
Yep, that’s the church. Looks safe, right? And that’s pretty much a great picture of what Mbulamuti looks like – the remains of a bustling city, torn apart by war, political instability, and the lack of a stable economy.
It would be impossible for me to ever forget Mbulamuti, but there’s something else that acts as a constant reminder. I have a shirt framed and hanging on the wall in my home office. While in Mbulamuti on my second trip, we met a boy wearing the most unbelievably tattered shirt I’ve ever seen. You could see the multiple places it had been stitched together. I happened to have a Three Avocados shirt in my bag and asked him if he’d be willing to trade me. He gladly agreed.
I cherish that shirt. It is a constant reminder of what happened to my heart the first time I visited Mbulamuti. The beauty and hope that surrounded us as we worshiped in a building on the verge of collapse. The spirit of the people that should be broken, yet were thankful beyond my understanding. Truly one of the most beautiful places on earth.