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Forest Lake Talks

A Message from Ellen

September 25, 2019

Dear Friends,

Mother Teresa is reported to have said, “We cannot all do great things.  But we can do small things with great love.”

There is very little we can do, as individuals, when the world feels overwhelmingly chaotic or hostile.  But we have all the control over how we approach that chaos or hostility.  And, over and over again, in the face of chaos and hostility himself, Jesus called for love.

Last Monday night, about 35 FLPC souls brought food and welcomed two visitors into our congregation.  Sally Harwood, a financial consultant and the American Board president for Ministry of Hope Lesotho, and Mamonyane Mohale, the Executive Director of Ministry of Hope Lesotho, came to share the story of what they are doing to save the lives of children in Lesotho, Africa.  Ministry of Hope, begun by PC(USA) Mission Co-Worker Nancy Dimmock and Nurse Mamonyane Mohale, is celebrating ten years of saving the lives of the children of Lesotho, Africa –  www.ministryofhopelesotho.org .      They operate out of a three-bedroom, one bath house in Lesotho and house, feed, educate and love between 20 and 30 children at a time.  Let that sink in for a moment.

The children that come to them are sometimes orphans (often orphaned by AIDS) and often abandoned by family that either cannot or will not care for them.  They come as young as days old and stay with Ministry of Hope until they can return to family or are adopted.  Mamonyane described children arriving on the brink of death and suffering the effects of the diseases of poverty (ringworm, skin diseases, TB, malnutrition, etc.).  Mamonyane told of worrying about how they could help the children to celebrate Christmas, to make it a special time in the lives of these children.  So, she called a friend and asked her to come and choose a child for whom she would buy a set of new clothes and provide some special food with which to celebrate Christmas.  The friend came and said that she was there to visit the “orphans”.  Mamonyane said, “Orphans?”  To call the children “orphans” she said would allow us to treat them as if they did not matter, and to give them the old cast-off clothes that we no longer wanted.  Instead, Mamonyane said, these are the “angels” of Ministry of Hope.  That is how we see them, she said, and that is how they should be dressed.  Her friend choose two angels to “sponsor” for Christmas.  The word spread and every child in the house was dressed and fed as an angel for Christmas.  Mamonyane told us that God has provided, even when she was not sure how they would feed or house the children. 

Clearly, we are a potential part of God’s answer to Mamonyane’s prayers.  We cannot save every hungry and sick child.  But we can work on just a few angels, giving what we give in great love.  You and I are responsible to do what we do with great love.  Don’t be overwhelmed by evil, but overwhelm evil with good (Romans 12:21).  Pick a need and love that need – in the name of and after the example of Jesus Christ who rules our hearts and lives.

See you in worship!

Ellen Fowler Skidmore

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