15 Jan Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.INDIA
As a concrete response to the theme that the Region of India chose for this advent – “hoping with others and for others”, the Pune community decided to accompany the children of the Banjara community who migrated from Karnataka in search of a better life. Their parents are construction workers. We visited them and had a good interaction with them. While interacting with them we felt that their children are in need of tuition since they are going to government school. As a gesture of giving hope, we decided to give tuition to 10 children. As we were also studying, two of us planned to give tuition to them in the evening from 6:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. We have seen in them a keen interest to learn. They are very friendly, loving and open. Every day they would wait for us, and as soon as they see us, they would come running. Even the parents were very happy and supportive. We added them to the nutrition project of our community.
After the classes, all the children used to accompany us to the road to say goodbye. One day as we were walking a girl Sangita came up to us with some Boras (a small green fruit) that she had in her pocket. We told her that they were for her to eat but she said that she had brought them from her house, especially for us. We were touched by this gesture; she was sharing the little that she had. She was very happy when we accepted them.
We invited them for the Christmas gathering along with the neighbourhood children. They were very happy with the games, gifts, and the party. We could see the joy on their faces as they interacted with the other children.
On Christmas day once again, we invited them to our house and had lunch together. We enjoyed being with them and were touched by their gestures of innocent love, friendship, enthusiasm, trust, and above all the desire they have to learn more and do better in life. All of us were touched and felt that we had shared hope with these enthusiastic and vibrant little children.
It was really an experience of being an instrument of Hope to others. Through our accompaniment, we felt that we have put all that we could like the widow’s mite into helping these children. We were instruments of light in their lives during this advent, but we also received the light that dispels the darkness through this experience.
May the baby Jesus show them that He came to share their littleness and that he too needed Mary and Joseph to help him on his way.
Margaret Soreng. Aci