August 2014


I just returned to Thailand on Saturday August 16, and arrived at Sarnelli on the following day. I was in the States for 10 weeks, trolling for shekels. People were very generous, and we had a very successful Ceboride, which is a bike ride to raise money for medicine for children with AIDS. In my absence, Father Ole, Brother Keng and Kate, our nurse, led the kids in planting rice, and receiving new folks. They did an incredible job.

I will say that it was nice getting back to Thailand, and Thai (Issan) food and to see the kids again. When the van picked me up at the airport, it was packed with little girls who wanted me to open my bags to see if there was any candy for them. There was, but when we got to Sarnelli House, all the children were waiting for me and I felt like a rock star! I got to hug them all and visit with many (We have around 150 children, over half of whom have AIDS). After they left, I had a bowl of noodles and went to take a 4 hour nap, thanks to jet lag! I am OK now, and am back in the groove.

We have new children who came to us right after I left. Three boys, and, I think, 6 new girls. All of them are happy and in school. We also took in a young mother (not yet 30 years old) and her four children. The oldest girl, 12, was fathered by a guy who deserted the mother after birth. Her second choice as husband was a guy who is a chef in Phuket, and he unknowingly had AIDS. Her smallest boy, 2, definitely has AIDS and TB. I have three small rooms for families when they need lodging, and those rooms are empty now. We are making some repairs for the family. Also, two babies will be born in October, and Kate talked the mothers out of having abortions. But this means we get the babies and raise them. I am not sure when the babies are due for birth, but we will be ready for them. 

The monsoons came late this year. It was July before the rains came in hard, and the kids just finished planting all our rice fields two weeks ago. The fish ponds are all filled with water, and we planted more fish in our ponds. A college in Udorn donated the fish-lings to us.

Some of our workers are leaving us; two to get married, and one man who was our foreman on the farm. The two brides-to-be are marrying foreigners, guys who they met here at Sarnelli House.

I want to thank you again for your interest and support of Sarnelli House and its kids, and the children, staff and I pray for you and all the family, at our night prayers, every evening!


Fr. Mike

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