Visiting with the Street Children

October 6, 2014

Kitui, Kenya Partnership

This afternoon, I went to the Kitui Diocese’s Saint John Eudes Rehabilitation Centre for street children on the outskirts of Kitui Town.

Sister Lucia, one of the many young African religious sisters we have met in Kitui had invited me and some of the other Minnesota delegates to see this concrete block building where she is working miracles.

The boys were initially timid upon our arrival, but when Sister Lucia asked them to show us around, they quickly began to feel at ease and show us each and every room.  The boys and girls generally come to the Saint John Eudes Centre because they fled their dysfunctional homes where there is violence or abuse.  They have tried to make their way on the streets, often by stealing, pickpocketing, etc.

The boys we encountered today seemed nothing like what they must have been on the streets. They were so gentle with one another.  The teen boys seemed especially eager to tell me about how they are learning skills to become self-reliant.

One spoke with pride about his ability to cook the meals for all of the boys saying, “That will be helpful when I graduate and leave here.”  We  asked,

“What’s your favorite subject?”

“Biology, Chemistry and Physics.”

What do you hope to do when you grow older?”

“Become a Doctor.”

“What interests you about medicine?”

“I want to help people, and here at the centre I am learning what it takes to be a good person.”

“What will it take for you to reach your dream?” Julie (one of the delegation members)

“To study very hard and do my homework.”

I left feeling sad for these boys whose dysfunctional life has robbed them of their sense if well-being but the Saint John Eudes Center is giving it back to them.

Sister Lucia’s gentle, firm manner is so inspiring.  I was amazed to learn that four of the these street children have now reached university level.

These are miracles worth praying for.

 

Mike Haasl