The children are still on their long school holiday program. The recent ‘water throwing’ festival ‘Song Kran’ was very much enjoyed by everyone. Tab has finished his time in the Thai Army. He is now a fully qualified mechanic in a big company not far from Baan Non Som Boon. “Big” Proy has started a new job in Ayutaya province.
Our new children’s program which is held after school time on the Seeds of Love base is attended by many children daily. (attached a picture) Sports activities are held on the grounds: soccer, basket ball and volley ball. The children have started asking our volunteers questions such as; “Who/what made you decide to come and help the leprosy people in our village?
As our Australian team was preparing to leave the leprosy village to help the people living in the slum we were approached by a woman who herself is effected by leprosy. She said; “Although only one of my hands can be used I want that one hand to be a helping hand”. Love in action inspires more in kind, and often from the most unexpected places.
Half-way house and prison:
Sunday, an ex prisoner who was released a few months ago is still with us. She has learned many valuable life skills, she is also helping us with the food delivery for the leprosy program.
The work inside the high security prisons is blessed with many people finding a complete new way of life behind those high walls. Those deeply touched by God’s grace are having a profound effect upon the the rest of the prison populations, by loving their neighbours as themselves…. and there are lots of neighbours to care about. Each prison is populated by over three thousand people. Divine Love expressed in words as well as in real practical ways is a light that shines in the darkest of places and circumstances.
“But about midnight, Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them.” (Acts 16:25).
Imagine the impact of the things said in prayer and singing on the guards and the other prisoners. It was a far cry from the oaths, threats and curses that were usually heard in such places. The message of grace had its effect on the listeners, it still does. The kind of effect depends on each individual heart, but it is always there.
Food program for leprosy effected people:
The effects of leprosy: Besides the physical deformities one of the most challenging side-effects of leprosy is the stigma it carries. For many centuries leprosy was believed to have been the result of spiritual darkness. Being diagnosed with leprosy means that those affected are often rejected by their own communities; sadly, usually entire families of those effected by leprosy are shunned as well. At this point in time we care for over 100 people who still suffer severely from the effects of this disease. We were able to expand the program recently. Besides providing food we need to show heartfelt respect, love, and a warm hug speaks more than a thousand words. One of our blind food recipients burst into tears when we took the time to listen to her life’s story. Listening to her made me realize that their stories of hardship and resilience should not be lost. We decided to write down their stories. Hoping to publish them sometime next year.
No greater burden can be borne by any individual than to know no one cares or understands.
Thank you so much for all your sincere prayers, practical and financial help.
“You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.”
― John Bunyan