Salaam and Greetings of Peace:
“A giver of maintenance to the widows and the poor is like a giver in the way of God, an utterer of prayers all night, and fasting during the day.” – a saying of the Prophet (SAW), from Bukhari.
There is truly no better way to begin the New Year than with an act of love. And God blesses no act greater than the loving-kindness of charity to those in dire need, the sick, the widow, and the orphan.
I have written before about my friend Dr. Maithri Goonetilleke, and his work in Swaziland among HIV/AIDS patients. Swaziland is a country of widows, a land of orphans. Through the foundation he started, Possible Dreams International, his team helps many people not only receive drugs and treatment for AIDS and all manner of ailments, but also funds basic education, provides clean drinking water and builds houses for the sick and poor.
They are our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers, our sons and daughters.
Here is one of their works, from a post about Gogo (grandmother) on Maithri’s Soaring Impulse blog:
“Gogo Ida Gama turns seventy this year. Her house, made of mud, is falling down.
When it rains or the withering southern wind begins to blow, the wall above her bed, shifts and crumbles. She can barely walk. She has no food. She is always cold.
In her lifetime, Gogo has seen more than her share of suffering. All but one of her children have died before her, as a consequence of HIV/AIDS. Her only remaining daughter is also HIV positive and has just given birth to a newborn to go with her other little 3 year old piece of heaven named ‘Nothando’ – which means ‘Love.’”
PDI is urgently trying to raise money to buy a truck, so they can continue to visit the rural communities they visit 365 days a year.
Give what you can! Any amount would provide the blessing of what we take for granted every day, the basic necessities of food and clean water.
With love and blessings for a wonderful New Year, from Maithri, and from me.