Sunday, January 15, 2017

St. Francis Shelter

On January 7th a Children's Rosary was held at St. Francis Shelter in Vietnam.  This is home to 80 children and 40 adults. Most of those living at the Shelter are severely disabled and cannot speak.  There are a few children who are not confined to their beds and are able to speak and even sing.

Tran (age 16) was able to bring a Statue of Our Lady of Fatima for the visit to St. Francis Shelter. The Children's Rosary began in a general meeting room with several kneeling before Our Lady.  Candles were lit.  A decade of the Rosary was prayed and then a rose was placed before Our Lady. In between decades Ave Maria was sung. Our Lady was then lifted  and in a most reverent way carried to the rooms where the children and adults live. 

Our Lady was again set down and all those able to kneel took their place. Candles were placed before her and the Rosary continued.  Those confined to beds could pray from where they lay. At the end of the decade each person could place a rose before Our Lady and the statue of Our Lady was brought close enough to each in their beds that they could kiss her.  

May I humbly share that through Tran's phone I was able to have a window into the meeting and hear the children praying, singing and also see them.  What I witnessed was incredibly moving.  As Our Lady was brought to some they tenderly kissed her, pausing in some cases to say a quiet prayer and simply be with their Heavenly Mother. I remember the man in the yellow shown in the picture to the left. He took some extra moments when it came to his turn and he kissed Our Lady.

As Tran passed from room to room each time praying a decade of the Rosary, we began to see more of the rooms were filled with younger and younger children. Several of the children who were healthy moved with Our Lady accompanying her and kneeling in prayer at each room.  One of the little girls in pink was a tremendous help. She was able to carry a little baby close to Our Lady as others knelt praying.  

For the children that were small and mostly unresponsive, Our Lady was brought to them as well.  They could hear the praying and singing.  I was able to see several times when a head was touched in such a gentle way by another child and with such compassion and love.  

These children and adults have a life of incredible suffering.  Yet they are shown great love. The person who runs this shelter calls himself the Servant of the Miserable.  He speaks of each person as his treasure.  Although they have little, the Director had one request of the Children's Rosary: please pray for us.  This was his request of us. 

I include the sign for the shelter above.  One can see on the sign, a heart and within the heart is a wheelchair.  Our Lord's words come to mind, "Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me."(Matthew 25:40)

There are efforts now to begin a monthly Children's Rosary group at St. Francis Shelter. We humbly ask you to please keep this in your prayers. Thank you. 

Please know that the children prayed for all the members of the Children's Rosary at the meeting on 1.7.017.

Other Posts You May Enjoy:
How to Start a Children's Rosary
Confession is the Soul's Bath
Lion and the Lamb

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