Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Day 6-7

We got to Uganda this morning and were met by Pastor Samuel. We headed to his home. Kampala is so different from Nairobi. There are people everywhere, exhaust fumes and so many cars on the road.

We visit Pastor Samuels ministry Return and have the opportunity to feed the children. Our team paid for the food that was served. They have 11 children that live in the orphanage all the time and a couple times a week they feed 200 in the community.
So we fed 200. This overwhelmed me. There were 2 very young toddlers crying and I scooped them up. One had to be a preemie. His face looked to be a two year old while his body was the size of a six month old. Precious. Then I see everyone yelling at a little boy as they are coming in to sit on the benches to eat. He has messed his pants on the bench and they are mad and make him stand up. There are tears rolling down his cheeks. He can't be more than 2. My mind tells me that comforting him will result in his messy pants and the smell staying with me, but my heart quickly moves and I am holding him, telling him it will be all right. Making sure the two little ones I was holding are ok (as I leave them sitting on a plastic patio chair on a cement slab near a 3 foot drop off which is normal here!) I go to find him some new clothes and clean him up. One of the church ladies I ask for help whisk him away to change him and I never see him again during our stay. Poor little guy, the smell that stays with me the rest of the day (until I can change and throw my clothes away that night) is nothing compared to what the people of this country live with.

We are able to eat with Pastor Samuel and his wife Sarah in their home. It was a good time of fellowship. She made the best chapoti I have had here!

We visit 2 government facilities today. This was a lot. Children everywhere with no hope of leaving this place, ever. They are property of their government now. The first was for youth ages 10-18. The conditions were indescribable and yet we found ourselves in the midst of worshipping with them. Hearing them in Luganda singing worship, not even knowing the words they were saying was humbling. They are falling to their knees in worship on the dirty cement floor of a facility that imprisons them. And many times my worship is far far less.

The second facility is for under 10. Again no hope of ever leaving. They aren't awaiting adoption. They can't be adopted. They aren't awaiting a court date for their case. There will be no court.

The children here are very pushy. They are getting the things we are passing out and hiding them and then getting in line for more. There are over 180 of them. There is definitely a way things work here. The little ones get in line and get their things And take them to the older boys and get back line. Many children without pants. Many with special needs. They scream and cry as someone older takes something from them or they don't get their way. One little one starts to fall asleep and he falls off the cement wall that is 4 foot high unto the cement driveway. I jump up and comfort him. I grab another one that is laying down nodding off and we sit down. I put his head in my lap and begin rubbing his back. He falls asleep only stirring when he drops the sidewalk chalk from his hand that he has been clenching to grab it and quickly go back to sleep. A boy who can't be over 5 sits down next to us. He doesn't speak and can't walk. He drags himself. He keeps pulling down the pants if the boy I am holding as I keep telling him we don't do that. Such sadness to think if all their little lives have fine through. Continuously telling myself that I am here for a short time to show them love and goodness and hope. Only God can change the future. But He has given me today to live for Him.

Our last stop today is a baby home. 50 babies not many aunties. We start in the newborn room. All are under 3 months. It is feeding time. They feed one change it and lay it down in a crib. There are 12 newborns in the little room and 10 cribs. I grab a bottle and a baby and start cuddling. Diana picks up a little one whose head is smaller than the palm of your hand. She is so congested and can't eat her bottle hardly at all. She eats a few bites and struggles to breath. My instinct tells me she is aspirating and the struggle if eating and breathing makes her get so sleepy she can't eat barely 2 oz of her bottle. Diana rubs her head as she nods off and her little face smiles.

Another little girl I am holding can't be more than 6 lbs and he has an IV port in his hand. No one can tell me why or they won't. They are very distrusting of Americans. We can't take pictures here and are treated as though we are an imposition.

The newborns are all fed, changed and down for their nap so I go into the toddler area. I am just walking from room to room listening for crying. I find a room lined with cribs of toddlers. Half are napping as they are supposed to and half are standing and yelling. I find one to soothe and begin bouncing him and humming. He is giggling and reaching for my face. And then within minutes he is sleeping. I snuggle him into bed and pray for his life. And we leave. As we are down the hill waiting for Diana the team is silent. The pain and disturbing things I have just seen that I have stuffed so I could serve come rushing out and I find myself sobbing.

This is millions of times more hopeless than I ever thought back in my home in the US when I prayed for and thought of this place I knew God wanted me to go. I find myself praying every moment, God may your return come quickly and save us.

- Posted from my iPhone

1 comment:

  1. LORD let your mercy and love fall upon these precious lives, have pity on them, rescue them. Keep Shelley and the team secure in Your love and grace. Move in our hearts to obey and follow your leading.