Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Laid To Rest

I am sorry dear ones, I wanted to send this out on Monday after the funeral, but just couldn't.
I wanted you to see the wake and funeral of our dear precious Jonathan, who his "family" laid to rest on Monday in the late afternoon.
If you read in my previous entry from last Saturday, late, you will know that he was fostered by one our our mommas and taken home to be their son early last year.
As Danyne our Director pointed out at the funeral, this one thing is our primary goal here in Uganda. To find families for our children and eliminate the word "Orphan". She said, "If this would have happened last year when he was still a orphan at the baby home, there may have been 4 of us at the funeral, a few volunteers, maybe a momma or two, but it happened today and look out and see how many are here. In a little over a year, and there is many, many (at least 150) people here today, that loved him and made him part of this family. He died having brothers and sisters, cousins, aunts and uncles...." In front of her, the small coffin sitting on a coffee table in the midst of the crowd under a large tree.
Earlier when we arrived, we were all ushered into a small small mud hut, in a room with a dirt floor. The small coffin placed on a mattress and Mama Katherine, sitting beside it with all the women around her. Crying out to "Jesu". We would pray and sing spontaneously, sometimes in English, sometimes in Ugandan, but what a blessed blessed praise service at the side of that coffin. We all know Jonathan was not really in there, for he is already with the King.
Tears were shed, grief poured out, but not the grief of those who have NO hope. It was beautiful and touched me like NO other funeral has touched me.
Know this, dear ones, God will prevail. The sadness and grief will pass, and we will continue to care for these children and fine loving homes with wonderful families such as Moses and Katherine who will take these children and call them their own and adopt them into their family. Exactly like God has done for us. He doesn't care about our past, where we come from, or what color our skin is or how. He alone has adopted us with an everlasting love and we can call Him Abba Father (Daddy God). I am so overwhelmed by this that I am now feeling goose bumps down my arms. Praise Him.
Please pray for Moses and Katherine as they continue on with life and healing.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

It Is Well...

"When Peace like a river attendath my way. When Sorrow Like Sea Billows Roll. What ever my lot, thou hast taught me to say, It is Well, It is Well, With My Soul."

Today, We had Trajedy strike one of our own. We Are Amani, A place of "Peace". Peace in the Midst of the Storm. It was so needed today.

Our Momma Katherine (Katy) lost her son Jonathan in a tragic freak accident today. Jonathan was one of our Amani Babies that Momma Katherine fostered early last year. As she was working today, she received a phone call from home that NO mother ever ever wants to hear. As Jonathan was outside playing with his siblings in the little neighborhood where they live, he went to the hedge fence and grabbed ahold of the fencing inside the hedge and was electrocuted and instantly sent to the feet of Jesus.

The owner of this fence, thinking she was repelling thieves from her property, stole power from the electric company and in turn took the life of an innocent little 2 year old boy, who had no idea it was about to end.

The saddness and overwhelming grief, we experienced today even amoung the prayers going up was almost more than a person could bear. After calling the power company to come and disengage the electrical wires laced through the fence, the police came and investigated. Standing there holding onto Momma Katherine as she cried to God and grieved the loss, Reporters from the television studio in Kampala and the local Newsman stood around filming us and taking pictures and demanding a "story". We had to ask them to stop many times and finally walked away.

While we waited at the police station for the written report and then returned to the "Morgue" to retrieve Jonathon's body, those responsible for giving a release for the body demanded renumeration before "fixing" the body and releasing it to us. I helped place his little body on the lap of his older brother David in the back of my car for the ride to their small home.

How my heart grieved and cried for momma Katherine as she tenderly laid him on the matt floor of her "Garage home" and lovingly washed his body and dressed him in his "Sunday Best" and tediously and carefully massaged his stiffened limbs to lay him out for viewing. The small one room home only divided by a curtain was filled to the brim with many of the other "baby home mommas" and neighbors and family who had come to spend the night in prayer and support to this family. Katherine continued to cry out to God, call on His name and give her praises in Luganda while sometimes switching to English.

While things like this make me wish I was home, it also reminds me of why God called me here in the first place. These Mommas are our family and I was humbled by this simple and final act of a mother's love for her child, though she did not give birth to him. Grown in her heart and not in her womb.

Monday, will be the soonest we can take him for burial, as we must wait until then for the District Health Officer to write a death Certificate Then we will take him and as many family members as we can squeeze into the cars and take him to the family plot for burial.

I ask that you please pray for Momma Katherine and her family and the mommas and staff of Amani Baby Cottage. This is the first time in the nearly 6 years Amani has been in existence that one of our "placed" children has died, either here or abroad. It will be difficult for them for many days, and the prayers will not cease to bless them. Thank you dear ones and May God Bless you as you remember us here. Thank God we have hope and can know beyond a shadow of a doubt, that Jonathan is sitting at the throne of God. Hallelujah!!!!


Sunday, July 19, 2009

Today is Sunday. Both here and at home presently as I write this note. It is evening here, but morning back home. After church and lunch as I am doing today, I usually sit at home and relax.
Today, it felt like a fall day at home in Colorado. The wind was blowing steadily and it was cool. It has remained cool all day. Kinda weird for Uganda.
I have been training and orienting a young lady from Australia to take over as the Volunteer Coordinator until December. Praise God for her. It is wonderful for us that she agreed to stay on and take that responsibility. With my other duties and my position as medical officer, it took so much time. I do have to admit, I loved doing it, despite the time it took. Wearing two full time hats was really starting to wear me out. She is doing a splendid job and I am able to concentrate on taking care of every one's health and medical.
We have a stomach bug circulating Jinja right now and it has NOT seen fit to pass us by unharmed. It is making its way around the children, and adults. I think though we are finally starting to pull out of it .Still pray for us here at Amani Baby Cottage. Pray for my back and neck as well. I have had some pretty bad flareups of my fibromyalgia lately. It makes it hard to do what I am called here to do.
Blessings dear ones. I thank God for you and Praise Him!!~!