06 Apr Best wishes for a Happy Easter 2023 from Sister Laura
Happy Easter Distance Parents, Friends, Mission Supporters!
Jesus has risen three days after his crucifixion. In Adwa, after three years of pain and war impossible to describe, lights of rebirth, of RESURRECTION, are finally shining.
To call the problems over would be a big word: reconstruction, recovery, having to start from scratch is an almost impossible challenge to accept. Yet the miracle is that, despite the estimated nearly million dead, despite the destruction of schools, hospitals, factories, LIFE wins, wants to embark on a path toward horizons of possible hope and peace. This miracle was performed by you together with us, who stayed with the people. You have not abandoned us even though the news, for reasons of obvious prudence on our part (we would have been expelled from the country) has been very scarce.
The Friends of Adwa Association has been the mediator between you and us; it has been the bridge kept open to keep hope lit.
The first questions to answer are: where are the children? What about their families, the ones you have been following for years?
We are welcoming them back to the mission, children we have already met and so many others we have never seen before. School has not yet resumed even though, thank God, ours was untouched by the war. But we have thrown our gates and hearts wide open to all those who seek a finally safe place to resume being children and playing.
There are still hundreds of thousands of refugees who have lost everything. We feed as many as we can with what is available, listen to what they feel like telling us, give them clothes and blankets. For children, it is amazing what miracles a soccer ball, fresh bread, a few chips, some cheerful music can accomplish.
Formally, schools have not yet been reopened in Tigray. But we take them to class every now and then so that they can reacquaint themselves with pens and notebooks, which unfortunately are in very short supply. Stationery is a luxury for a few: throughout the region, books, libraries, records, and documents have been burned or stolen by the military by emptying stores. When we gather them into working groups and let them free to draw, their subjects are always weapons, bombs, drones, fires, violence, people killed. This speaks to the deep trauma the creatures carry inside, perhaps on a subconscious level. It will take a long time to heal wounds whose scars will never disappear.
We still haven’t heard from many of the boys and girls in grades two and up who were called to fight last year. Their families are also in the dark about their fate: they are expected with great hope, but the authorities’ silence about them is hard to bear.
In spite of all this, hope is alive, looking and planning for the future. Our hospital, miraculously spared like the mission, has saved tens of thousands of lives. Now it is a matter of resuming work to complete the second wing, which has been interrupted for three years. For this, too, we need your help. In fact, we have used some of the money earmarked for the new walls to feed and treat the people, the wounded, to keep life going.
As soon as we can, when communications (even the damaged/destroyed ones) have been truly restored, we will send you more accurate photos and news: in the meantime, stay close to us, let’s make this Easter 2023 truly a Resurrection for the whole world. THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART!
Sister Laura and all the survivors of Adwa