Thursday, May 21, 2009

WIDOWS and Orphans

Did you know that the UN describes an orphan as any child who has lost one or both parents, especially if the living parent is unable to adequately care for the child?

When we think of the word, ORPHAN and VULNERABLE, we think of a child who has no parents.  We certainly don't think of helping a child who has a loving mother.  . . Until we learn a bit more about widows.

Widows own nothing.  Strike that, women own nothing.  Not really. . .whatever they can own, can be removed at any given moment.  

We heard stories from precious women. . .

Women who spoke of the hardest day of their lives.  The day their husband or father died and his entire clan came in to steal from them, before the bodies were even laid to rest.
The clan just came in to the family hut and took everything. . including the tin roof.

This is what it's like being the child of a widow.  
This is why the children of widows are still considered orphans.  They often have NOTHING.  They are shunned and often blamed for their husbands death.  This leaves their children not only without a daddy, but without a provider. . of food, school fees and protection.

Heartbreaking?  yes.  But God is doing a work.  

Remember James 1:27, "pure and undefiled religion is this, to take care of widows and orphans in their time of distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."  Often, we jump on the orphan bandwagon, but we often forget the whole widow part.  

This is where the TESO Widows come in.  . .listen to Beatrice's story.


Beatrice is the woman who leads the Teso Widows.  Yes, she leads 20,000 widows in the Teso Region of Uganda.  They now have it divided into districts and even sub-districts because there are so many widows!  Each of these precious women carry around a register of all the orphans in their area.  Literally a lined piece of paper filled with children's names, ages and villages.  The children who have lost one or both of their parents.  Children who weigh on these widows hearts.  Can you imagine having a burden to do something for the orphans and for the other widows and having NO resources with which to help?

This is where WE come in!  We get to partner with these wonderful women!  

THIS IS A CARE POINT!!!!  We (Children's HopeChest and YOU) partner with the widows in an area and we get to provide much needed resources so that they can minister to the precious children of their district!  So, THEY can feed the children (the widows will VOLUNTEER to cook and serve the meals 6 days a week).  Then, the care points can expand over time and as churches get more and more involved in THEIR carepoint.  They can provide medical care, school fees, a community garden, clean water, classes, teaching a trade and most importantly JESUS to this community!  

Talk about running to the aid of a WIDOW AND ORPHAN!!!!  Does this excite you?  These precious women who have lost everything. . .we get to help them keep their children!  These precious children who have lost so much. . .we get to help them EAT!

Your church can make a difference by sponsoring a care point!  Your STATE can make a difference by gathering all of the churches together to sponsor all of the care points in an entire district.  There is something stirring here and it's an act of God.  Remember that old Experiencing God principle of "join God where He's at work"?  Well, He's at work in the TESO region of Uganda.  Get on board!

6 comments:

Ashhog said...

Did you know I tear up at just about EVERY single post of yours!! :) Awesome, Awesome, Awesome!!!

AT said...

this is great. she is such an amazing woman!

Anonymous said...

I love, love, love to see what God is doing...!
Renae

steffany said...

Can I post this on my blog.

Beautiful Mess said...

I love oral history. Her story is so amazing because it is her words.

Thank you for the work you do.

Praying to see what God is doing in me toward this same issue.

I am collecting items for the Sept. trip. Let me know if you have any new ideas for collecting, now that you have gone. Jen

Anonymous said...

Oh what a sweet, sweet woman! What an exciting care point!! I will continue to keep this in my prayers...they definitely have a ministry that could use support and funds!! It just makes me cry! Love ya, Christie