As I sit in my home this Christmas Day enjoying the sound of my children running around celebrating their new toys, time with family and full bellies, I want to remember our widows and orphans in Zambia…as well as all the orphans and widows of the world. How can we live differently in 2010 with our abundant provision to sacrifice and pour into the lives of widow and orphans? How can we change the way we spend and save to pour more into those who need someone to remember them? Whose responsibility is it to stand in the gap anyway? My prayer is that I would SLOW DOWN in 2010 to reflect MORE and remember OFTEN those who don’t have mommies and daddies to remember and provide for their daily needs. My prayer is that God would raise up families to stand in the gap and sponsor children through organizations like Wiphan (if you haven’t before, check out our sponsorship and donation needs on the Wiphan website and consider sponsoring one of our precious orphans for 2010!) My prayer is that God will open hearts and homes to welcome another child into their fmaily through the miracle of adoption! That families will join us in the movement saying, “One less orphan!” As you enjoy this Christmas day with your sweet gifts from God…join with me in remembering the orphans and trying to picture what today is like for our orphans and widows in Zambia…
An update from Wiphan Care Ministries (www.wiphan.org) how our sweet widows and orphans spend Christmas:
Merry Christmas from all of us at Wiphan!!
We recently asked Kunda, founder and vision carrier of Wiphan, what Christmas was like in Zambia and what it was like for the widows and orphans that Wiphan ministers to. When we received her response we were overwhelmed, and we thought we would share it with all of you, our Wiphan supporters. As we celebrate Christmas here in the US, please keep our widows and orphans in your thoughts and prayers as they also celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ 12,000 miles away.
This is how Kunda describes Christmas in Zambia for she and her family as well as how our orphans and widows will experience this day…
WHAT IS CHRISTMAS TO A ZAMBIAN?
Christmas day to a Zambian means the day THE SAVIOR, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, WAS BORN. For Christians, Christmas is a very special day when the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ is celebrated and greatly appreciated. Zambia, being a Christian nation,Christmas day is a public holiday and most Zambians go to church on Christmas because we do have a church service similar to the usual Sunday service which would be from 9.00hrs to 12.00hrs. The service is centered on the STORY OF THE BIRTH OF THE MESSIAH. The pastor usually preaches on how Jesus Christ was born, why He was born, His death and resurrection.
HOLY COMMUNION also takes place on Christmas and thereafter, people are free to go back home but they are expected to go back to church from 17.00hrs to 18.00 hrs, for a CANDLE-LIGHT SERVICE AND CHRISTMAS CAROLS ARE SUNG.
After attending a church service, people are free to join friends elsewhere and continue celebrating Christmas. Some people (those who can afford) do have simple family gatherings, invite friends and just celebrate Christmas together. A few people (those who can afford) buy and exchange gifts but the majority don’t do that because they can’t afford.
CHRISTMAS FOR AN ORPHAN AND WIDOW IN THE COMPOUND.
Christmas for an orphan and widow, is a very special day when an orphan or widow thinks of bathing to look presentable and wear a clean set of clothes they probably washed the previous day. They also attend the church service within their area where they are told the story and birth of Jesus the Messiah. After the church service, they return home and have a very special meal, most likely something they haven’t eaten in a long time like chicken or meat – this happens because these families live under a dollar a day so on a daily basis they can only afford caterpillars, small fishes called kapenta, beans and vegetables. So most widows make sure they find piece-work (part time work) and work hard, early December to try and gain K25,000 (this is equivalent to 5 Dollars) to enable them buy chicken and have a delightful meal on the day.
Sadly, if the widow fails completely to find some piece-work and has no money to serve for Christmas, she would then take her children to go into the bush, find fields to hunt for RATS. When rats are caught, they are cooked and eaten with nshima and that can be VERY SPECIAL FOR A WIDOW AND ORPHAN. Rats also make a very memorable meal for orphans and widows.
Praise be to God, for Wiphan supporters, for the meals provided to the orphans at Wiphan. Wiphan orphans will enjoy a very nice meal with soya-chunks on Christmas day. Once again a million thanks for food provided to orphans at Wiphan and the mealie -meal widows and care-givers receive on a monthly basis. Hunger has been lifted off from the homes of widows that come to Wiphan centers. Wiphan-Zambia will remain grateful for the HUNGER-RELIEF PROGRAM THAT HAS BEEN IN EXISTANCE FOR THE PAST TWO AND HALF YEARS NOW. GOD RICHLY BLESS YOU WIPHAN SUPPORTERS FOR CONTRIBUTING TO SUCH A NOBLE CAUSE.
GOD RICHLY BLESS YOU ALL. SHALOM AND ENJOY YOUR CHRISTMAS.
AND…GUESS WHAT?! I wrote the WRONG number for monthly sponsorships in an earlier post! It is ONLY $39 a month to sponsor one of our sweet orphans!!! We have board members taking a trip over the first of March–so if you sponsor now, you can start writing letters to your child and putting pictures together so he/she can get to know their sponsorship family!!! Be sure to check out www.wiphan.org! Check out the t-shirts…and share with your friends and family Wiphan as you wear them…and you can buy coffee too to help support the ministry! There are 2 t-shirts—so check both of them out…but this one has very special meaning to me…
Here’s the meaning behind the t: In bemba, the native language spoken at Wiphan, Ukwampana means “help one another.” This t-shirt also features one of Wiphan’s own students as well as gives a glimpse of the vision carrier behind Wiphan…our dear Kunda. The profits from this trendy tee will feed and educate one orphan for a month. For EVERY sponsorship through my blog I am sending YOU a FREE t-shirt! You see, each board family had a goal to raise up 20 sponsors…and the crazy Young family has been so crazy with adoption stuff this Fall that we are a little behind! How cool would it be to to meet our goal by New Year’s! I’d LOVE for us to run out of kids to sponser…which means we’d get to pull in that many more kids to join our sponsorship program (We wait until all of our current kids are sponsored before pulling in more for the program) YOU CAN ONLY IMAGINE how important and special this makes each child feel!!!!! If your family makes the leap of faith to be a part of this INCREDIBLE ministry and BLESS a child in this way…PLEASE let me know personally that you joined our Wiphan team AND what size t-shirt you want…and I’ll be sending one YOUR way. For those of you who have or are in the process of adopting…you know how endeared you are to those who have supported your adoption financially??? Well, we feel the SAME WAY about those who join us to make a difference in Wiphan!!! Our sponsers are being a part of LIFE CHANGE!!!
And when folks ask about your shirt you can tell them all about your sweet child…and how THEY TOO can join Wiphan Care by sponsoring a child!