Excerpt written by Amanda Pelletier, Our summer intern and trip member
Do you want to go on a journey with me?
It’s a beautiful voyage, a captivating destination. I warn you – you might fall in love with it. You might not want to leave. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Are you ready? And… we’re off.
You’re in the warm heart of Africa – Malawi. You sit in a small truck with your team pressed on both sides in the backseat, waiting outside the dark green gate to enter the site of When the Saints. Slowly it opens and you with your team softly gasp as the home glows in the afternoon sun before you.
Inside a woman greets you with a smile that exudes warmth – Virginia – the office secretary, and she guides you through the rooms.
When you enter the living room, the girls scurry across the concrete floor, whispering to one another with covered grins. As you shake their hands they erupt into laughter, falling over with giggles and peering at you through covered faces. Any time one of your team speaks, chuckles fill the room – your foreign speech delighting them. Their laughter makes you laugh, and a cycle proceeds where you feed off each other.
Crinkled eyes filled with joy, a language anyone can speak. You study the girls, transfixed by their bright eyes, their melodious voices. Carefully you wrap up every detail into a treasured gift to be opened over and over again.
There is joy in the rooms, in the people, in the land outside. In a world where things are unsure, the home is a safe haven, a shield of protection, a house of restoration for all who enter it. Already you fill up with delight, with positivity, with love. You find friendship, deep joy, restoration, healing. And you begin to fall in love.
A Word from our Founder
Graduation and New Arrival
After being open for 6 months it helped us all to be able to say goodbye to our first graduate with a trip to Lake Malawi! The girls got to see a lake and go swimming for the first time ever. I was astonished as each of them, with little hesitation, bounded into the water.
As we returned the graduate back to her home village, our hearts overflowed with thankfulness for the Lord’s mighty work in her. With confidence we are able to know she is going to a safe environment. The man who abused her was arrested and we have helped her family know how to care well for her. Our social worker will also be visiting twice a week to make sure the transition is a smooth as possible. At the same time we are excited to learn through this reintegration process.
They say every ending has a new beginning. Filled with hope for her future as well as the sharp pang of letting go, in the car we learned the background of the new replacement.
12 years old, Marie* (not her real name)was left on her mother’s doorstep in a pool of blood. She spent one week in a coma and six months in the hospital recovering from fistula surgery. She also needed surgery on her bladder, but both would have been too much for her. Since the abuse, her urine slowly and continuously drains out of her. When she enters the home she will receive a healthy diet to restore enough strength for her to soon undergo the second surgery.
Currently she is very reserved, when I reached out to her she would not touch my hand or even look me in the eyes. Our hope is to see restoration physically, mentally, and spiritually in Christ’s name.
“He is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”