“Lord, You hear the prayer of the poor, you strengthen their hearts, You turn Your ear to protect the rights of the orphan and oppressed.”(Psalm 10)
Dearest Brothers & Sisters,
Today is October 10, the day we honor St. Daniel Comboni who died Oct 10, 1881, a great missionary to Africa who said: “The same terrible crosses that oppress me are also the greatest consolation, because JESUS suffered, JESUS is a victim, JESUS chose the cross.” Fr. Enrique, Superior General of the Comboni Missionaries, says: “As missionaries, we can only reach holiness when we make common cause with the people to whom we are sent. When we do not reject the pain and suffering of those who are not important or who are simply ignored by the parameters of our contemporary society. When, in simplicity and humility, we commit ourselves to building a humanity that is more just and respectful of the rights of all.”
We are deeply grateful to each of you for your prayers and love for the poorest of the poor. Thirty years ago I met Mother Teresa. She asked me to be a missionary to help her sisters wherever needed. Besides helping her sisters in the USA, I have served them in Haiti, Rome, Albania, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania and Ethiopia. I am now 71 years old — a priest more than 40 years. I came to Kenya on Dec 6, 2003. We began The Family of JESUS which serves over 400 poor: young men and women, children and elderly, the homeless, orphans, those neglected & suffering from dysfunctional families, drug addictions and sexual disorders. We care for as many as we can by carefully using every coin of your kindness and generosity. Mother Teresa said: “If you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love. It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving. Intense love does not measure, it just gives.”
Mercy Mkwana, 39 years, was pregnant for 10 months until the doctors operated to save her life. Her daughter lived one day. She is still in the hospital waiting for her bill to be paid, waiting to bury her child Ann Margaret. Nachma Shitakwa, 4 years old, is receiving oxygen. The doctor told me that she would die unless she has surgery. We were able to pay deposit and surgery was successful, but I have no money for the remaining bill. Anton Mbwru was bewitched and lives in the street unable to care for himself. We have invited him to live with us, but he is not ready to make that change. We help him and pray for him. Maybe he will stay with us someday. Abdul Juma was coming home to his wife and son one night when he was stabbed three times in his chest. He has survived three surgeries. I visited him and his family in the slums. We assist them and so many others whose lives are so difficult because of extreme poverty, violence and corruption. Recently, many homes were demolished with no notice because the government had other plans. We are supporting one of those families who woke up to this total destruction.
Most of those we help live in slums because our home cannot hold any more. We have four bedrooms and some sleep on couches in the sitting room. Forty young men sleep in our home. Under our water tower are two rooms for young women and children accommodating five young women and three children. We cook outside on fire wood: ugali & beans or greens. Only water to drink (no coffee, tea, juice or soda). No sugar, meat or dessert. We rarely have fruit. We have no refrigerator, no washing machine or dryer. We wash clothes by hand. Most go looking for work by 7 a.m., some leave earlier with nothing to eat till supper. The virus, locusts and floods have damaged our economy severely. Finding work is very difficult. Maize porridge for breakfast. No lunch. Supper is around 8:30 p.m. after Rosary and Mass. I have Holy Hour at 4 a.m. At 5 a.m., many come to pray the Rosary and Chaplet of Divine Mercy. At 6:30 a.m., some come to pray the psalms and Bible readings. Those who are home pray the Chaplet in the morning, noon and 3 p.m. Six times a day we pray together for ourselves, for those in most need, for those who are dying — and for all of you. We pray for protection from the virus and strength to avoid all sin. The virus has not come in our home, but some have it where they live. On Sunday, we worship about three hours beginning at 10 a.m. with the Rosary, then Holy Mass followed by Adoration and singing The Chaplet of Divine Mercy. We serve rice and beans for all who come. Because of the virus, we do not invite everyone as before. We pray for the pandemic to end soon.
This photo is of a Children’s Home that we visited. PLEASE PRAY FOR US — THAT IS THE GREATEST GIFT YOU CAN GIVE US. If you want to help us financially, we very much need and appreciate your gifts. We thank you deeply with our prayers for you and your families every day.
May God bless you all! We love you very much! Your brother, Fr. Ted
Oh Mary, Mother of All Nations, you listen with a Mother’s Love to all who look for your guidance. We ask you to keep all those we love in your tender care. Give us strength to face life’s difficulties and protect us from all spiritual and bodily harm. Grant us enough compassion that we may help others, sharing with them in their time of need and caring for them in their distress. Amen.