Saturday, 22 January 2011


Each week we meet as a team to discuss our work at Jeevan Sahara Kendra. Friday afternoons are set aside for this. It isn't always easy listening.

Our four home-based care teams tell us who they consider their 5 "priority families" for the coming week. Of the 25 odd HIV affected families each team is assigned - which ones they consider most in need at any level - physical, emotional, relationally, spiritually...

Today we wrote down the names on pieces of paper and put them on the floor in the middle. 20 names. Each one such a complex maelstrom of challenge. And yet so many common strands.

Alcohol abuse being one that cropped up regularly today. The cause - and the reaction to - so much misery. Poor relationships between spouses. Fatigue at looking after family members who are constantly sick. All the three mixed together. And more.

It all just looked so daunting. And yet the names on the slips of paper were real. Our staff meet with these families regularly. They are not just characters in a book. Not just made-up folks for a role play or a cosy case-study discussion. Each name is a living breathing person. Each set of misery is being played out through the gossamer strings of relationships.

At the end of the day - each person is precious - no matter how twisted their circumstances - no matter how rocky their own lives may be.

This afternoon we broke up into groups of 2 and spent time praying. Each group grabbed 3 pieces of paper to pray for. 3 names. 3 different families. 3 unique trajectories of misery and care. Seeming hopelessness and stubborn hope.

Our prayers are being lived out by the daily visits our teams make.

What seems impossible for humans...

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