Knowing that your effort has been worthwhile!
Encouragement Team at leprosy village - English article

Tse Tat Chi (Johnny) (25/7/2005), Six months ago I watched a movie. It was about a young doctor who after his training became an intern at a leprosy hospital in South America. He was there helping the patients, working and living together. After the movie I knew more about leprosy. I understood patients need care and respect and after treatment they are no longer infectious. That changed the image of leprosy to me. Recently brothers and sisters invited me to serve the Lord at a leprosy village I remember the Bible said to help needy people and that whatever you do for the least person you do for Jesus (Matthew 25:40), so I was then happy to go. On the way to the Leprosy village I passed my families home town. I felt very at home at the leprosy village because I recognized the accent of village residents. Now days the leprosy village has improved and is pretty tidy. It looks like a retreat center. When I first got there I climbed up a tree to get some fruit. After lunch we started the painting work. During the day I met some residents they were always laughing and smiling. In fact I couldn't imagine that their past life was so difficult. They were rejected. On the second day we mainly chatted to residents. We prepared a meeting inviting them to join with singing and different kind of games. Although the games were very simple I could see them smiling and laughing. I realized they had not laughed and smiled so much for a long time.

Before we returned home we had a very good meal. In the bus a brother told me that he saw a resident without hands and arms, he could not sit up and help himself, he needed people to help him. Another was blind and deaf.

Some residents told me they were put out of their homes and started living here when they were younger than me. After the war they couldn't find their family. I felt so sorry for them but the saddest thing they shared was that when they came to live in the village they thought it was for just a short time but really it has been their whole lives.

In Hong Kong we are young, we can help people, we can share the gospel, we have dreams. Thank God for that. The most important thing I have learnt during this trip is; I understand life is not about how many processions you have but that you are living in God's grace.

(English translated from Chinese)



Uncle Tsang (22/7/2005), One day I was sitting at home and our son B was talking about being a volunteer at a leprosy village in July and he invited me to go along. I felt that it's meaningful to help people and to know more of this world so, I said yes to my son's invitation. On the day we departed we brought along our backpacks and got to meet together with the other participants who had arrived already. I met MMM's leader. We arrived at the leprosy village smoothly. I thought it would be a village but it was a convalescent home. When I took the path leading to the dining room for lunch I saw around ten people with handicaps sitting in the garden, they looked like they were living in their own world. I felt they look bored.

After lunch we started work. We were divided into three groups to start work, two groups to paint walls and one to paint a verandah. We work until dinner. I was willing to paint for them, wanting to improve their environment. I felt very positive about being involved. Helping people made me feel very invigorated as well as fulfilled. After dinner our team gathered together we prayed, sang, and in different groups we dramatized scripture. I felt relaxed and joyful. This is the first time I have been a volunteer at the age 60. This is remarkable to me.

The next day I woke up early and I went walking around the garden. I met some residents and started chatting with them. During the conversation I learnt there are around 80-90 residents. Some of them have been living there for a few years, some for decades. Some of them haven't even got any relatives. I felt they were poor and lonely, I was full of compassion but I could do nothing to change their world. One old man shared that he had experienced the China war against Japan. During the war he had to escape many times in a day. There was no food. When I saw the expression on his face I felt very sorry. I hope more people will come and visit them, I hope they may come to know Jesus.

After breakfast we completed the jobs and started inviting the residents to join our programme in the afternoon. Everyone was busy in the morning. After lunch we started to prepare games and the residents were invited to come and join in. Some of them were in wheelchairs and needed our help. The programme started with some young people singing songs, they did a drama that made the residents laugh. I felt happy too. We divided them into three groups to play a game, everyone got a little gift and everyone was having fun. When we finished the programme it was time to get ready to leave. We had to say good-bye.

I know we couldn't help much but we could bring happiness to them. May God be with them. Please pray for them. Finally I would like to share with you a scripture we learned during the trip, ¡§Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.¡¨ In the future I would like to be involved with more volunteer activities.

(English translated from Chinese)



Tracy Ma (20/7/2005), At the beginning when I decided to go to the leprosy village. I wanted to spread God's love and to help a group of people that are isolated. During the trip I was surprised because God gave me more than I imagined. There I saw many people who are caring for people's souls. Everyone chipped in, the organizer, the volunteers and even the residents, everyone put in a big effort to complete the job. Love was shining on the people. Although the weather was hot it didn't discourage the teamwork. When I talked to the residents they were not as I thought they would be. I thought they would be very reserved and not want to talk, but they were friendly.

I told them the most happiness is to have Jesus in their heart. When I tenderly touched their shoulder or shook their hands, without fingers, then I could feel God's great love. During the programme I saw child-like smiles show on their faces. Although they have handicaps that cause problems in their lives and they have suffered pain, I realized that God's love is no different to me, or you, or them. Even though their bodies show disease, their soul in heaven is complete. May God bless every one of them.

I thank God that I could experience this. Thank you MMM for organizing this trip and for the residents who prepared meals and accommodation. (I remember the residents by name). When I got back to the busy city of Hong Kong I felt it is a different world again. I think I have to set my hearts on things above, more. Thank God.

(English translated from Chinese)



Emily Tsang (20/7/2005), This is the third time I have joined an Encouragement Tour to the leprosy village. Going again was just like visiting family, all the faces were familiar. I felt so close to them. I still remember the first time I got to the village and I saw the handicap residents, although I wasn't scared I didn't really feel comfortable either. But this time I was much more comfortable touching their shoulders, shaking their hands and hugging them, it was the natural thing to do.

On Sunday afternoon we had a programme for the residents. They were happy to be involved even though they were sweating. Smiles were on their faces, brothers and sisters were forgetting the heat and getting involved playing games with the residents. We prepared the games, timing and scoring; everyone was happy. When joining an Encouragement Tour it seems we give out many things like, time, money and effort but in fact we receive much more than we expect. Every time I receive something, I learn something.

Listening to the residents, old stories, singing songs with brothers and sisters. Chatting together under the tree. Every time is memorable.

I wish that all of us were like vessels suitable for God to use, filled with love. Portraying the theme of the Encouragement Tour; Colossians 3:1-3 ¡§Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set you minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.¡¨

(English translated from Chinese)




>>> Back to the article page >>> Home