Monday, August 4, 2008
Friday - July 25, 2008
As the first week comes to an end there’s a feeling within us all of how much we truly appreciate and cherish working with the children, young adults and the elderly here in Porur. At the beginning off the week we wondered how we’d be able to contribute and as each journal entry captured our daily reflections throughout the week we began to see the tangible contributions we’ve made in the lives of those we have been privileged to work, teach, and play with.
Capturing seven tales of celebrations begins with what was a highlight of the day and week…watching our team give each of the SEAMS boys shirts brought from the U.S by all of us. The boys lined up in order of size – short to tallest, to receive their new shirt. This kind and generous act reflects our Teams guiding spirit and deep feeling for these children. Ricca and Phylis enjoyed their day at Assisi blowing bubbles and making necklaces with the children out of fruit loops. Once the children discovered that eating the fruit loops was more fun than making necklaces the activity became truly a ‘treat.’ Thy had a surprise vist from Stephen, our group leader, whose devotion to the children is so admirable.
Karen and Jim had another good day at St. Joseph’s this being Jim’s last day with the kindergartners he received a special card and gift of thanks… we’re not sure if this gift was a book of rhymes as the children taught Jim many rhymes throughout the week.. Karen got her 4th and 5th classes mixed up but easily navigated her way to the children who always eagerly await her presence in the classroom. Both Karen and Jim had a tour of the convent where the sisters and novices live in a privacy surrounded by the beauty of trees, flowers, and love birds.
As for my own experience today was a continuation of my love affair with India and the children and adults…the magic never ends. The morning at St.Thomas hospital was filled with conversations visiting patients, discussing medical resources for the nursing library, and meeting with some doctors. Near the end of the shift during lunch Dr. Sister Rexiline took me to another school to hear Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s speech to the students at Montfort Matriculation School. Dr. Kalam is one of the most admired leaders in India, having served as President of India. His speech to the children was about courage to learn and to help the country. I was able to share some of his thoughts with the young adults in my next class in which we discussed how he ignites the minds of students across the country. This was also one of the student’s birthdays so we had chocolate cake and sang happy birthday in English.
There is so much we each experience every moment here that we would need several lifetimes to capture it all. Thank you Stephen for your guidance, patience and friendship to our Team .
Rabindranath Tagore, one of India’s great modern writers said: “I slept and dreamt that life was joy. I awoke and saw that life was service. I acted and behold service was joy.” .