We had another great letter week! The first one received was from Reine in Burkina Faso.
I cannot stress enough how much I appreciate the way Burkina Faso's stationery is laid out. Reine writes very short letters with not much information (she basically said she's doing well and exams are coming up.) But on the back of the paper, there are spots for questions, responses, and prayer requests, and she always fills these out! Reine wanted to know if it rains every day in my country, and asked how many seasons we have. She also asked that we pray for her country.
Next, we got a letter from Jayid in India.
Jayid wrote several responses to my letters. I had sent all the kids some information about carved pumpkins (leaving out the information about Halloween) and asked if they had ever seen a pumpkin. I also sent pictures of the jack o'lantern art display we saw back in October. Jayid wrote back that he has seen and eaten pumpkins, but he doesn't like the taste! He also said that he liked the picture of our dearly departed rat Glitter, and said that he had never had a pet because there isn't room in their home. He also shared that his dad is recovering well from tuberculosis, though he still has to take medicine and he is weak sometimes, so working can be hard.
Then we heard from Elifagason in Tanzania- our first letter from him!
Sadly, Elifagason's letter didn't reveal much personal information about him, but I think he might be a little shy. I hope that his financial sponsor continues sponsoring him until graduation, so I can get to know him better. He said that he was glad to write to me, and he thanked us for the letters. He said it was hot in Tanzania and asked if it was cold or hot where I live.
Next, we received a very special letter from Carlos in Peru!
Carlos' letter was very long - it included an extra page! He sent his thanks for the birthday gift from his financial sponsor, my friend Jim, and said that he bought new shoes, a vest, and a long-sleeved shirt. We also received an extra photo of Carlos wearing his birthday gifts! Carlos also responded to a letter I wrote a few months back about Florida. When I knew that my family would be visiting Florida, I wrote all the kids about the wildlife there, and told them about alligators (which, I explained, are a lot like crocodiles.) Several of the kids have written back, sharing what they know about crocs, and Carlos told me he knows that they keep their babies in their mouths to protect them! I had also written a letter about the Louisville Slugger Museum in my town, and the bat factory and giant baseball bat there. Carlos wrote back that he knows a little about baseball, but he doesn't understand the rules of the game. He also said that the weather is hot where he lives, and people are starting to come to the beach. He said that he has been to several Christian concerts, and his favorite animal is the dolphin- and he would like to swim with dolphins some day! Carlos also told us that he has a dog and two cats, and when he was in school he visited a museum with his class. Carlos also said he really appreciated the geography book (a Spanish atlas) that we sent, because he really likes that subject. He shared two important prayer requests. He asked for prayer for his mother Carina, who is apparently not feeling well, and he also asked that we pray for him, because he is feeling like God is distant from him. I have already responded to his letter and tried to encourage him, saying that I feel this way myself sometimes, but one good way to help these feelings is to try to stay close to God by praying and reading the Bible. God's word says that if we draw near to him, he will come near to us!
Finally, we got a letter from little Bonifas in Tanzania.
It had been about three months since Bonifas' last letter, so I was very glad to hear from him. Bonifas sent us Psalm 23:1 and said his family is doing really well. He also wrote about crocodiles, saying that he knows they live in water! Bonifas then asked us to pray for his family, and that he can build a house. I am going to see about doing an inquiry to ask what exactly is going on with Bonifas' house- it could be that they were able to get a little land and are going to work on building their own home, rather than renting, as many families in Tanzania do. I also want to see if maybe we can work out some kind of fundraiser to help with this effort! I will come back and write an update post when I know what's going on. :)