The work in Aweil continues to move forward quickly! We are now connected to the government’s Child Welfare Department office who is giving us total freedom in getting these children home. They have provided us two full time social workers that come everyday and interview our children, tracking down families and relatives. Once we have the information, it is up to Iris Aweil to load the kids up and get them home and into school. This is the same thing as before but now we have correct and good information and the full backing of the government. Incredible! This is not typical of what I have experienced in South Sudan. We have always seemed to run into so much red tape or this fee and that fee to be paid, yet here in Aweil, God has opened every door to us with no burden to shoulder except to get these kids home.
Romans 13:8, 11 Let no debt remain outstanding except the continuing debt to love one another. And do this, understanding the present time.
Our compound is fast becoming home to our staff. It is so good to know that these guys love hanging out here and feel totally comfortable doing so, never even asking if it is okay. Some of our guys are our watchmen and they are here for long periods of time during the week. Yet they feel so comfortable and at ease here that they come back just to hang out with their friend, another watchman who might be on duty. Today, even one of our off duty watchmen brought a friend and three of them played cards all afternoon. This is a true testament to our hospitality and wanting to fellowship with our Sudanese brothers and sisters. It is not “normal” or typical here for Sudanese to hang out on white people’s compound for no reason. There is no separation between races or countries on our compound. They know this and feel this and that is why they spend their off duty time here with us, and feeling free to do so without permission. I like that, I really like that!
Tomorrow, Monday, we are meeting with the UN Child Welfare people to see if we can get some assistance with them driving our children home to save us travel monies. We would like to give the families of these kids a goat or some food rather than paying some local taxi to take them home. Praying that this connection will be a good one.
We will also resume sending more children home this next week and registering them in school, as we had to take a break while I went for more funds. Many are ready to go home now. Today I was in the market buying some veggies for our dinner tonight, my turn to cook, and there was a commotion in the street. I went to investigate and saw a boy squatting down and picking up spilled lentils from the dirt, crying as some man was pulling on his ear in discipline. I squatted down to see if he was one of ours and he wasn’t. The boy then got up to return what he had stolen and a lady brought him directly to me. I asked the boy if he was hungry and he said yes. Some of my other boys were standing around and before I could say anything, they told him, “You go to Masara tomorrow, Mama Carolina will feed you.” I smiled and shook my head yes and the boy clicked his tongue, which is how they say yes here.
I love that the lady knew who I was and brought the boy directly to me and how the street boys were not jealously guarding their food source but were wanting to help this boy to share in it. I can’t even begin to say how these boys are moving my heart. I see nothing but their beauty and the love that they have stored inside ready to reciprocate to those who love them back. People are beginning to not push the boys away when they see them coming to me for a hug or smile or handshake. They know that this white person is not offended and doesn’t need to be “protected” against society’s dirt. I pray that we are impacting the hearts of these adults by our love for these special boys. Evil and hate and disgust can only prosper if good men do nothing.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all who give to my ministry, to these boys, and to the children of Yei. Thank you for praying, giving, caring, touching, and stopping for the one set before you each day. By giving to us in Aweil you are doing all of this and more, you are doing for Jesus.
Love and blessings from the front lines of love,