Final Update Before Heading Back to the US

Trip Start May 23, 2007
Trip End Jun 06, 2007

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Flag of Philippines  ,
Monday, June 4, 2007

I did not get the opportunity to update the last few days as I promised.. sorry! Unfortunately, the photos the agency took of us at Eniremor's home are in Powerpoint format, and I cannot convert them for use here (will do so when I get back home). I cannot even begin to describe their home to you, my American friends and family. Mike came up with a good way to describe it. Climb up three flights on ladders made of 2x4's, to reach the space they call home... then to imagine their living space, take all the clothes out of a closet (say one that is about 4' x 6'), make sure the temperature is 95 degrees or higher along with 90 percent humidity, and tell 4 people to sleep there. That is an accurate portrayal of the homes we saw on Thursday. Mau's family (her nickname is Mau) was quick to show me the fan and foldout sleeping mats I provided for them... all I could see was how much more they truly needed, all I could think was "How in the world can I get these dear people a larger room??"

And yet... they are so appreciative, their family love is palpable, their joy infectious.
They are the ones who are rich, and I am the beggar.

On Sunday after a wonderful worship service at Union Church of Manila (over 30-something nationalities represented), Sister Savita Samar picked me up to visit their home for the mentally handicapped. The grounds are well-kept, and the love the Sisters have for their charges is truly inspiring. The land is owned by the government, the laborers provided by Mother Teresa's Sisters of Charity out of India, and the facilities and other blessings are provided by private donors (like my business friend Jon Dehler, who told me about this place). Here are photos of my visit.

Now the trip is winding down, and I dread leaving behind the new friends I have made. Nevertheless this has truly been the Trip of a Lifetime I anticipated... and MORE. God gave me a new sense of purpose and passion while I was here. I may only help two families, but those two families matter to the Lord as though they were the only ones He died for... having met these families, I can honestly say *I* am the one who benefits the most from our relationship.

Be talking to you all Stateside soon!
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