Some of the children came a week before Christmas, welcoming friends, with hugs and loud shout of joy. Collective birthday celebration was characterized by jubilation, singing, praising and dancing. As more Samaritan children came in, there was uncontrollable noisy of excitement, hugging each other and one another, talking and sharing their experiences, spiritually, socially and educationally. Abraham, Lazarus and Miriam Lengwe are three of our children. Abraham told the others how their last parent on earth passed on. He said, “Our mother suffered from HIV/AIDs for a long time. She took the ARVs and our father (John Jere) and mother (Joyce Jere) prayed for our mother, bought the necessary food, to boost up her immunity system but all that could not help. God took our mother and now it is more painful for us to be in the world without a biological parent. What a terrible life without a father and mother on earth”. As Abraham narrated the death of his mother, with tears rolled down his cheeks, then the rest of the children joined him in mourning his mother. Jackson Kasuba told the rest of the friends who were present, crying that Abraham’s mother is in the hands of the Lord because she acknowledged Jesus Christ before she died. God gave and God has taken. God has given us loving and caring father (John Jere) and mother (Joyce Jere). Let us continue to look to Jesus Christ, the author and the finisher of our faith.Our children have a way to encourage one another and they always support one another. Some of our children did not come because they were not allowed by their relatives as they served during their Christmas and New Year. Josephine asked me to keep some food for all those who did not come because they will need food from their home (Samaritan home) We will tell them to come and collect their shares.” They talked much about education and their walk with the Lord. When food was served, Hope Zimba prayed and thanked God for the food which others do not see on a Christmas day.
It was the greatest and heart satisfying moment for Joyce and I, to see our children come back home. Joyce and I hugged our children and some of them are really grown up, taller than I. They are all doing very well at school. On a Christmas day, all our children and us (Joyce & I) went to Church, just for an hour, sang Christmas carol songs and had the preaching of the Word of God.
In the afternoon (25/12/2011), we all had nice meals, drinks, cakes, biscuits, sweets etc. Later in the afternoon, as per Samaritan custom, we bought many balloons for our children to blow and the one who burst the balloon first, got a present. The boys competed with the girls. It was always unfortunate that the girls lost and the boys always win. Our children like this game. You can imagine the boys supporting fellow boys and vice versa. There was a great excitement as the balloons burst while others struggled to blow theirs. Some literally failed to blow the balloons into a reasonable size.
Later in the same afternoon, at 14.30 Hrs, the Samaritan team, left for Kanyama, to feed the orphans, preach the word of God and counsel the children and do similar service. It was so much fun and many people came to watch and hear the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Sarah is one of the Samaritan Children who has some medical issues with her eye. We took Sarah to the eye clinic but the doctors could not really see much as her eye was swollen and almost covered. She was given eye drops, to clear the entire white and red blood and reduce the pain in the eyes so that the doctors can clearly see and operate on her eye. The appointment is for this Friday. The eye has improved though the growth is still there and she says that it is constantly itching. Will you please pray with us that the operation be a success?
Helen Tembo is about 76 years old widow. She is a South African lady who lost her husband ten years ago. She and her husband had only one daughter who was married. Helen’s daughter died of HIV/AIDS and Helen remained with her son in law who also died of the same epidemic in 2008. The son in law was the bread winner, the only relative she had and he also passed on. Later, she suffered from stroke which affected her left hand, head, leg paralyzed. She is currently staying with her friend who is a good Samaritan. She came to our feeding program and said she was hungry. We fed her and have taken up the spiritual & physical responsibility of providing food and other needs. We all need help from other people, especially when we are growing old.