This week was pretty awesome, letter-wise! I got three letters, two of which were first letters from some of our newer kids!
The first letter I received this week was from Kevenel in Haiti! This was our first letter from Kevenel.
I received an "about me" from Kevenel, pretty quickly considering we just got him as a correspondent last month! Several other folks who asked for correspondents around the same time also got kids from Kevenel's center, so I'm thinking he might be part of a larger corporate sponsorship, and they got all the "About Me" letters ready to go out right away! It's nice to have this info, even though correspondents don't usually get introductory letters!
Kevenel's letter stated that he has a mom and a dad- in fact, his dad wrote the letter for him! He has a sibling named Dukens who was born in 2003 (I'm guessing that's a brother), and then there was a child named Richelor that has the same birthday as Kevenel- apparently he has a twin! His favorite food is mashed beans and vegetables, and his favorite color is red. He is enjoying learning French in school, and his favorite worship song is "Almighty." Kevenel's favorite Bible story is the story of Joseph, which is one of my favorites as well! His favorite game is soccer, and under "what I like to do most", he said he likes to sweep and water. I'm sure he's very helpful to his parents!
Kevenel is an extra special blessing to me because of his birthday. Kevenel shares a birthday with my dear friend and mentor Betty who passed away shortly after I returned from Tanzania. Betty adored my sponsor kids and loved hearing about all of them and reading their letters. For weeks after she passed away, I checked Compassion's website for girls named Betty, and found several, but although I would have loved to honor her by sponsoring a child who shares her name, I am unable to do so financially. I was so happy and touched when I found Kevenel on my account, who shares Betty's birthday.
The second letter I received this week was also a first letter, this time from Caleb in Uganda!
Caleb was a surprise anniversary present- he showed up on my account on January 2, which is mine and Brandon's wedding anniversary! It was great to finally get a letter from him!
Caleb shared that his family is doing fine, and he hopes that my family and I are doing fine, too. At the time he wrote the letter (it was not dated), he said that it was the rainy season and people were busy planting crops like beans, maize, and cassava. Caleb says that his mother helped plant them, too! He was getting ready for exams at the time the letter was written, and he asked for prayers for good grades. He then said he loves me very much and he will continue praying for me and my family. At the end of the letter, Caleb said that he was thankful for the letters I send, and he enjoys reading them "every day!" I'm so glad that I got this letter from Caleb- so often, writing consistently to a child you haven't heard from yet can feel like you're writing into a void. It made me smile to see that Caleb re-reads my letters! I have heard other sponsors say their kids have told them this, but Caleb is the first sponsor child I've had who ha said something like it!
The last letter I received was from Said in Tanzania!
Said's letter was written at the end of February, about two weeks before I met him! I am really looking forward to seeing his first letter written after that meeting (and the letters from Bonifas and Elisha, too.) Said's letter was free-form, and he shared that his daily activities are going well and he was able to buy some things like sugar and a school uniform with a small gift we sent last fall. Said's letter wasn't rich with detail, but it was very sweet, as he addressed me as "beloved" about six times. He must have been excited about our impending meeting!
Said's letter also included a copy of his progress report from Compassion. At the center, he's learning dental hygiene, good behavior, and Bible studies, in addition to carpentry! I saw some of the carpentry classes (and the resulting products) in Tanzania, and those boys do some amazing stuff! I didn't receive a progress report from Said last year, but I did in 2012. I would like to ask you to pray for Said's studies, as he has high aspirations (he wants to be a doctor) but his grades are not so great right now. Since he wrote about a high placement in his class last summer, I am thinking that a few things may have factored into this- like his sister's passing, the time his family takes to plant and harvest crops at his grandmother's farm, and the time he must have missed school when he broke his leg and then had surgery. In my next letter I will send him some encouragement about his schoolwork! I know that he has a lot going on and sometimes it must be a challenge to study outside school!
I can't wait to read everyone else's Mail Call Monday posts!