It is Saturday 10 December and we are up early before dawn to prepare the food for the Christmas party at Saburai. The MOP brothers visited the Saburai community the week before and invited all. The Saburai community is extremely poor with high degrees of malnutrition. Ladies chewing on betel nut is very common and it is unknown what additional effect this may have on their health. In addition, the lepers and other very poor community members were supplied tickets to bring to the party so that they could receive a food parcel. The food parcels were prepared the night before at the brothers’ house in Maliana with a lot of help from the neighbours. The food parcels consisted of sugar, rice, noodles, coffee, including a piece of clothing.

The party started about 10am and went through to about 3pm. In total, about 250 people came, including several children. There were around 12 lepers that attended, each of these 12 in various stages of remission since they have received antibiotics about 12 months supplied by WHO (World Health Authority). The MOP brothers in Maliana thus have been a vital conduit for the delivery and administration of the antibiotics and the ongoing monitoring of the disease in the Saburai community.

We wish to give thanks to WHO and Missionaries of the Poor for improving the well being of these lepers!!  For the next post we will check in on the Flores mission.

See you then…!!!!

With every blessing

Trevor and Tina

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Preparing food parcels for the Saburai community – adding sugar

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Food parcel preparation almost complete

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Food parcels complete

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Food parcel contents – sugar, rice, noodles, coffee and a piece of clothing

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Very early the next morning ready to start cooking for the Saburai community

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Before dawn the next door neighbour helping prepare the food

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Dawn

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Even sausages!

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More food preparation by Br Elmer

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Early morning on the way up to Saburai-the valley is filled with mist

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Saburai Mountain looms in the distance

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A minor distraction for me, looking at the amazing ferns on the Brothers’ property

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Basket ferns with orchids

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Back on the job….some of the Saburai community waiting for the festivities to begin

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Waiting

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With some children

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Even more children…

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…and more

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Some ladies chewing betel nut

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Mother and daughter, I think

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Local council member gives a Christmas blessing to the Saburai community and starts the party

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Three dignitaries, santa from Australia, Roger from Dili and the local council member

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First, some Christmas carols…

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… then serving lunch

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These high school girls from Maliana took a break from helping for a quick photo

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Next, a traditional Timor Leste dance

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High protein lunch

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Taking it steady

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Enjoyed by all

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I am not going to give up any of this

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Brother Jimmy and Rebeca

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Rebeca, in remission from leprosy, with santa

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After lunch Br Jimmy with ladies from Saburai

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Food parcels are ready

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We begin the distribution of the food parcels

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The ticket required to receive a food parcel

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 A Saburai villager, obviously I gave him a food parcel

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One food parcel per ticket

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More parcels

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Some of the Saburai lepers with an Aussie in their midst

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Time for a group photo

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Neighbours from Maliana – brothers Adeo and Paulo after the party

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Hat reversal at Saburai after the party – Trevor and Ielder

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Christmas party is over and the community returns home carrying food parcels

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