Portion for Orphans

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Portion for Orphans Newsletter

January 24, 2006

Kathmandu, Nepal

"Pure and undefiled religion before God and the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their trouble, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world." - James 1:27

"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks." - 1 Thessalonians 5:16

So we are in Kathmandu, Nepal now where we've been for almost a month. Nepal is just between China and India. It is the poorest country in Southeast Asia. They speak Nepali here and the official religion is Hindu. Although we have found that most people here believe that different religions are just different ways to the same God and many of Nepali people worship Hindu and Buddhist gods all mixed together. Most people here enjoy learning more about different faiths and telling us about theirs. We eat dalbaht twice a day here, every day, with our hands. That is rice and lentils. It's pretty good actually with curry vegetables on the side.

The main cause of orphans in Nepal is the Maoist Insurgency. This is a group of people, mainly poor lower class people and women, who've been taught about revolution and who’ve been promised equality, thus they fight for it. Since 1996, 13,000 Nepali people have been killed as a result. Whenever a man dies, he leaves a widow and a fatherless child. Most of the women soldiers are young teenage girls and probably have no children. Too bad this group isn't following after Gandhi's method of nonviolent rebellion instead of Mao Zedong's Chinese Communism. Another cause of so many orphans in Nepal is the poverty itself. Though it probably sounds extremely dangerous, it seems rather calm and foreigners are not targeted. However, next weekend as we travel to India, we'd like to request your prayers as it could be a little dangerous.

When we arrived here, we asked the girls at Parijat Nestling Home what they wanted to learn about. They said Bible so that's what we've been focusing on each day. They really like learning about the life of Christ so we started at the beginning with the Christmas story, which was perfect for Jan 1st, just after Christmas. Many people have asked if I have some sort of curriculum. I have the gospels, and that has been so perfect. After the Christmas story, we read what happened next and so on, comparing the gospels. This week, they have asked about how Jesus died, so we'll finish with how He died and then how He rose again. Many of the girls have been away for the winter holidays, either with relatives or with their parents in prison for problems related to poverty. Before all the girls returned, the 12 who had stayed decided to share the stories with them. So a couple days ago, a few of the brave ones stood to share with all 35 of the others. It was very very special and it's great to see them learning about the life of Christ as well as how important it is to love and help one another. We've also spent a little time teaching them some songs, basic guitar, and any other fun games that make all of us smile. :)

Sushila is who I'd like to point out his week. She is one of the two who stood to share with the other girls. She shared the above song and then told about and drew out John 3:16. She is beautiful and very very smart. She's not up for adoption, but I wanted all of you to hear about her.

Sushila... who is first in her class and Rama, peaking from behind. Her favorite song is Jesus Loves Me.

Praises: For these girls and their hunger to learn the Bible. For God's overwhelming goodness.

Prayer Requests: To finish strong and with good relations, for Mahon (the girls’ tutor) who seems able and capable of teaching Bible after I leave, for safety on our way to India, For Jun Ping in China and an American couple who's considering adopting her, For our time in India and for Paparao (who we'll be working with), for Portion for Orphans as we seek guidance for what to do when this journey is over.