August 2010

 Happy St. Alphonsus Day!

August 1 is the memorial day of St. Alphonsus Liguori, who founded the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. Our logo for Sarnelli House is actually the logo for the Redemptorists. I am proud and humbled at being chosen by the Lord to be a member of this group of monks!

We are getting rain sparse though it be, so both St. Patrick’s and Jan and Oscar’s older boys got together to plow, drag and plant. Most of the fields do not have enough water to plant, but we will do what we can. This is turning out to be the worst drought in my 44+ years in this country. Most rice farmers have given up, although it is unclear on what they plan to do, since the economy sucks here too. In the meantime, places like Wisconsin are getting way too much rain!

                About a month ago, Srinakarin hospital of Khon Kaen University asked us to take a boy dying of TB and AIDS. His mother, also infected, came along to help with the boy. The lad’s name is “Hiew”. Our nurse Kate bought yogurt to eat with his TB medicine, and he was finally able to keep down the medicines. Since his white blood cell count is zero, he came down with pneumonia and also got diarrhea, so he was hospitalized in Nongkhai, and it does not look good for the boy. He is back home with us now, but needs to get ARV medicines soon! He is grateful for the care he is getting, since he has a refrigerator to keep fruit and snacks and a TV and DVD player. He is still quarantined, and I am sure the hospital wanted him to get better and get out. Nurses run the hospital, and they can be mean with these kids. The lad desperately needs prayers.

                Our 16 year old pregnant Miss Dtang On gave birth prematurely to a baby boy, who only weighed about 3 ½ pounds at 7 months. The baby will be in an incubator for at least a month. The girl wants to continue studying, so we will try to get her into the King’s Matayom (high school) where there is safety and discipline. She said she will give the baby to us. The sperm donor’s mother has money so her boy is able to continue school, while poor Dtang On got kicked out. We give Dtang On and her grannie 4,000 baht a month and pay all her doctor’s bills. She will continue to get this sum for another three months. Then I will hire her until school opens. I think I have found a sponsor for her. One of our ladies with AIDS is also going to give us her baby girl, when I talked her out of an abortion. She, like others, gets the same deal. 

                School is out 4 days for Buddhist Lent. Today the boys are planting rice. We then have to wait to see if we get more rice shoots big enough to plant and rain heavy enough to keep the planted rice alive. We stop planting on Mother’s Day (August 12, the Queen’s birthday). By then, the time is too short for the rice to mature.  

                May the good Lord and His Blessed Mother grant you happiness, good health and all His good blessings!

Father Mike

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