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Showing posts from April, 2011

Meeting Baby Juddah’s Twin Sister - Sarah!

I could feel the anticipation inside of me growing as I walked down the bumpy Korah trail that led to Baby Juddah’s home.  In many ways it seemed so strange – it was only a few weeks ago, that my husband Dave and I drove to Seattle, WA to meet Baby Juddah.  Now here I was in his birthplace, about to meet his mom, grandmother and sister, whom I had prayed for, so very many times.  As you may already know, Juddah was born in Korah, but has been in the U.S. since January on an emergency medical visa, awaiting treatment for hydrocephalus.  His little face, sweet personality and story has captured the hearts and prayers of many!  Below you will find some links to earlier posts that tell his story.  However, this story is not about Juddah, but about his twin sister Sarah… I would like to introduce you to Sarah -- the healthiest and biggest baby living in Korah!   She has glowing round cheeks, pudgy little legs and a gentle, precious personality.  Sarah has been

"Break My Heart, with What Breaks Yours..."

Safely back in Canada, these were the words we sang this Easter Sunday in my home church; "Break my heart, with what breaks Yours" and this is the image that immediately filled my thoughts.  This ash-covered young girl... not so safe, in danger... scavenging at the garbage dump in Korah. I took this photograph last Sunday when standing at the Korah dump.  She is likely there today, even now as I am writing. Of all the photographs I have taken in Korah and still to be posted, this is the one that hurts my soul the deepest. I believe this is the one that  breaks God's heart... She never said a word and as our eyes locked, she just wouldn't let go. It was as if her eyes cried out to me... 

If this doesn't fill your cup - nothing will!

"If this doesn’t fill your cup - nothing will!" Those were the words of my new-found friend Lauren, who came with me to Korah on a day that turned out to be one of the highlights of my trip! A month before leaving for Ethiopia, I had asked Sammy, the Director of Great Hope Ministries in Korah; "What is one of the greatest needs that you have right now?"  His answer, was that second to baby formula for the HIV mothers, they needed new clothes for the elderly lepers.   Thanks to God and to those who generously donated to Hope for Korah we were able to fill this need.  It was such fun for me to go shopping at the Mercardo (market area) in Addis for these clothes with Berhanu and Murad, leaders from Great Hope Ministry.  I was the only "Ferenge" (foreigner) in sight, but alongside my body guards, I felt very safe and had quite the experience.  After the bartering was complete, we came away with thirteen new suits, shirts, socks and shoes for the Elders o

Income Generation Project - Making Beads

Finding work in the slums of Korah is difficult and for most impossible. This is a problem not only in Korah, but throughout Addis Ababa. Pastor Anteneh of Great Hope Ministries told me on a number of occasions, this is an overall problem throughout Ethiopia – that people do not have jobs. After assessing numbers of families for our upcoming Family Sponsorship program, it quickly became apparent that the top 3 ways of generating income in Korah was to go to the garbage dump and scavenge plastics and metals for resale, moving heavy rocks at a local construction site and begging.  Many of the women I met had health problems that had developed over time from heavy lifting. Not only are women carrying rocks for a meagre few cents a week, but they are also carrying heavy jugs of water on a 90 minute journey home from the nearest water source. T hese are the types of challenges that Great Hope Ministry faces and are hoping to address as their programs develop.  Presently they are partnerin

A Life Worth Celebrating

Over the few weeks I have been in Korah, it has been such a privilege for me to spend time with the Elders, to laugh with them, pray with them and celebrate with them. You may wonder what these broken men have that is worth celebrating. Well, that is the wonder of Korah… One of the pearls of great value found in the destitution of Korah was finding those few who have been redeemed from the pit in a way that those of us in the West have never experienced. I would like you to meet an endearing gentleman, his name is Adana. His body is broken, but his spirit soars! His beautiful smile and precious heart overflows with praise and love for his Lord! He eagerly shares with me that once he worshiped evil spirits but not any more. God touched his life and now, all that he is, he is for Jesus! His enthusiasm is contagious and those who speak to him always seem to break out in a smile or laughter. He was a joy to be with! More photos

The Elders

The “Elders” is a term of endearment and respect given to the elderly lepers who make the daily trek from their homes to the shelter each day to be fed.  Faithfully they arrive each lunch hour and faithfully the young men of Great Hope Ministry feed them the traditional Ethiopian dish ‘injera’.  Sadly, leprosy has robbed these men of much… many are blind, lame and their disease has eaten away their flesh as most are without fingers, making it impossible for them to feed themselves. To see their brokenness and pain is humbling… to watch the young men of Korah value them and serve them with such commitment, love and respect touches me in a way I have never been touched.  Look at the love and tenderness that is demonstrated by these young, strong men as they truly are the hands and feet of Jesus.  To see more photographs click here

Mothers of Korah

On my first day in Korah, I had a chance to meet a few of the 30 HIV mothers whom Great Hope Ministries reaches out to.  Many of these women have difficult and hard stories due to the conditions in Korah.  Rape and prostitution are a regular occurrence as income needed for food is difficult to find.  Of these mothers, some have young infants and they are unable to breastfeed their babies because of the risk they pose to their own children.  Without money, they cannot purchase formula and these babies are unlikely to survive.  Presently Great Hope is supporting 10 mothers with young babies, three of whom have sets of twins. Whenever possible these mothers are provided with formula and diapers. With the exception of these few children, babies in Korah do not wear diapers, which can lead to hyperthermia, as they lie on wet and soiled blankets.  Thanks to many who supported ‘Hope for Korah’, we were able to bring 40 pounds of formula in our suitcases, purchase diapers in Addis and give man

Arriving in Korah & Reuniting with Beylanesh

I have wanted to post for days, but it has been extremely difficult to get internet connection. Last Saturday I arrived in Addis to the most amazing welcome… big hugs, warm smiles, a dozen roses, my dear friend and driver from last year’s trip and five of the leaders from Great Hope Church.  I had no idea they would ALL be there. I felt truly loved and blessed!! It was like coming home…   G reat Hope Church leaders wearing their Canada shirts This feeling grew as we began driving onto the rocky, broken streets of Korah.   So much looks the same and yet so much has changed.  The extreme poverty continues to take my breath away and tugs deeply on my heart, but what God has been doing in Great Hope Church has been amazing.  Since last April a small shelter has been built and they are able to reach out to their community in ways that have not been possible in the past.  I will post more on those shortly.  In these first few days, the most touching moment has been reuniting with Beylan

Today is the day - I'm on my way!!

“Trust in the Lord! Be brave and strong and trust the Lord.” Psalm 27:14  Those were the words that arrived in an email this morning… from someone who is completely unaware that today is the day, I am flying on my own to Africa.  God has been so generous and loving to me.   Since first stepping into Korah one year ago this month, He has opened door after door, allowing me to share the story of Korah and paving a way for me to return.  My husband Dave will be joining me in a week’s time.  Together we are so thankful to so many who have been stirred in their hearts for Korah and have donated to this trip.  Together we are carrying over 300 pounds of donations from clothing, eye glasses, shoes, baby blankets, 40 lbs. of formula and on and on.  In addition to this we will be able to purchase much, much more while we are there.  This truly has been a ‘Working together for Hope!’  THANK YOU EVERYONE!!  Please continue to pray for the healing of hearts, homes and lives in Korah.  For Dave a