Many years ago Sunday was my favorite day of the week. It was the day I went along to my local Friends Meeting house (Quakers) . I got to spend time with some wonderful people, and enjoyed with them our sacred hour of silence, during which I tried to discern the will of God in my life. It was a ritual that calmed me, sustained me and gave me not only a sense of direction but a very real sense of connection to God; It gave me joy.
During the intervening years, first circumstances and then geography have prevented all but the rarest of opportunities to attend Meetings. Here in Spain I know of only three Meeting houses, all far too far away to attend. One would require a flight…
So here I am; it´s Sunday, and I still love to give some extra praise on this day. And there is no better way to praise God than to praise some of the wonderful people who are working hard to make life easier and healthier for some of the poorest people on earth. This Sunday I would like to introduce you all to the Quaker Bolivia Link.
It´s best if I let Quaker Bolivia Link speak for themselves:
QBL funds development projects in some of the poorest rural communities in the poorest country in South America. To date we have installed over 50 village water supplies, and built over 500 greenhouses.
QBL is an international, non-sectarian organization dedicated to reducing the amount of impoverished communities among the native people in Bolivia. We help with sustainable development and do this from a culturally sensitive point of view. Unlike charity activities that provide immediate needs such as food or shelter for the homeless QBL works towards justice addressing the root of many problems and promotes change.
Examples of projects that we support include: providing the funds necessary to build green houses for families, providing women with looms so they can more easily make textiles to sell and continually have a source of income. A vast majority of projects help communities drill wells and lay pipes to transport water to homes for irrigation purposes and to ensure a safer water supply. These types of efforts do not leave families dependent on outside aid. By carefully choosing to support projects that help the indigenous people provide food for themselves and create safer water supplies QBL promotes independence among them.
QBL practices reciprocity and does not try to instill their beliefs on the indigenous people of the Andes. Projects bring communities together which are completed and led by natives. Presently, the three agricultural technicians that help design, construct and monitor projects are native Bolivians. They provide communities with knowledge pertaining to resourceful ways to run a green house, teach about soil preparation, watering and crop selection.
QBL embodies the Quaker values of integrity, equality, peace and simplicity but does not fund any projects that have a religious purpose or exclude people with different religious beliefs. I believe QBL’s leadership effectiveness is increased by the amount of respect, justice, honesty, community building and service that they demonstrate to all those involved in the mission.
I don´t know of a better way to praise God than to praise and support people like this…
Have a great Sunday,