Today began with meetings. We met with the two district presidents, with a student who will be starting seminary training and with several other pastors.
Following a long day of meetings, we headed to St. John’s Lutheran Church, where we met someone who is probably very familiar to many—Shalem! Shalem is the young boy who was in need of a liver transplant. Over the course of several weeks, members and friends of the ELS were able to raise nearly $40,000. to help Shalem receive the transplant. I’m happy to report that Shalem looks very healthy, his incision has healed well and he is nearly back to a regular schedule! He will probably restart school in June, when the new school year begins. Shalem’s parents expressed their gratitude to everyone who helped their son. The family are all very faithful members of St. John’s and Pastor Solomon tells us that they all attended St. John’s Lenten services every day of Lent last year—40 full-length church services in 40 days! (Services are held in members’ homes during each day of Lent.)
After saying goodbye to Shalem, we travelled to St. Peter’s Lutheran Church and orphan home. There we were greeted by over forty orphan children from the home. After greeting and encouraging the children, we had a short tour of the home. Although there is no luxury for these children, their only alternative is life on the streets. The home provides food, a safe place to sleep, ensures that each child attends school, and, most importantly, learns of their Savior, Jesus Christ. It is a humbling experience to meet such happy children who have so little.