I have gone through real "dry" periods with Compassion, where I might go two months with no letters from any of the kids that I either sponsor or write to for sponsors who pay, but don't write.
But this has been a pretty good week+. First of all, when I logged into my Compassion account, I discovered that Theresa (Ghana) had a new photo. I called Compassion and asked them to send me a .jpg so I could post it on my "Compassion Kids" web site.
I think this is the third picture I've had of Theresa since I sponsored her and I long for the day when I see a smile out of this little girl!
I also had a phone call from Compassion about Murugi, who was a correspondence child from Kenya. I've been writing to Murugi since early 2011 and knew that it was going to be a short-term thing, since she was 19 at the time, so her time with Compassion was growing short.
My cool experience with Murugi was that someone from Compassion actually went to Kenya, visited her home, and sent me some pictures from that visit, so I had a good sense of her school and her home. She also took pictures of Murugi and some of the letters I'd sent.
One of the things she asked the woman who visited her was whether or not Americans really let dogs live in the house with them (which she thought was very funny), and if she were to come to the United States, would people hate her because she was black.
Compassion was calling to let me know that Murgi has completed her education and has left the area. They told me all the things she learned in school, and that she graduated with good marks. Since she has left the area, there is no guarantee that she will receive a goodbye letter from me, if I write one. But of course I will, though I will not know whether she receives it or not.
Luiz Hernandez from Brasil (my youngest child) "wrote." He hasn't learned to write yet, so someone writes for him and his letter told me the names of his best friends and asked what a typical food of my country was. He told me that there were a lot of frogs around where he lives, so I sent him a letter about frogs and included a picture of Davis's famous "toad town" and the famous picture of a little boy eating a frog. I also told him about the book, "The Toads of Davis," which the Davis postmaster's father wrote after building the Toad Town.
I also had letters from my two favorite kids, Shallon from Uganda (whose mother is dead and who calls me her mother), and Fred from the Philippines.
Shallon wrote a two-page letter saying she had gone to the library because I asked her if she had ever eaten a cherry and had found a story about cherries there. I'll tell ya, the cherry question was one I asked all of the children and I am still getting answers from them about whether they have eaten cherries! Shallon shared that her favorite fruits are oranges and mangoes. "At our place we have many of them and we also have a plantation of sugar cane."
She tells me that she likes the stories in the Book of Ruth in the Bible and shares with me a Biblical quote (Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.)
Fred shared that my mother has a bigger stomach because the baby inside is growing and he asks me to pray that mother's delivery will be fine and I will be more kind too. He says he is learning about the 12 disciples and that he likes the story of Noah.
Writing to these children is a real challenge for me, since their letters are usually so God and Bible centered. Shallon always includes a Bible passage for me to read. I've probably read more of the Bible in the past few years than ever in my life!
There were two letters from Esther in Indonesia, both written December 16. Esther rarely quotes the Bible or mentions God or Jesus, but her letters are more about what her family is doing. This was written before Christmas and she says her family is going to stay home for Christmas, to "clean the house and decorate a Christmas tree." We both like winter better than summer. She says that I like cold weather same as you, Beverly, because it is more fun than hot weather which makes me sweat. She is also waiting for results of her exams, a big concern for all of the kids, especially as they get older.
Esther is the first of the kids who actually has eaten cherries. I think it is delicious. Usually cherries are eaten with cakes.
This has been an unusual week. I don't take for granted that I will continue to get a letter a day, but I certainly have enjoyed my trips to the mailbox the past few days.