God’s Gift

“I am from God,” said  six year old Happiness,  when I asked her: “Where are you from”?

It happened at Mercy House, on Easter Sunday, where I went to share lunch with the refugees. Here they find a place of welcome and warmth to soothe their daily suffering from being in a foreign country without any back-up, except this tiny space whose motto is: Love changes everything”. It was originally a dumping site and it is now a place of love.  

The tiny girl showed me what Easter means: “We are from God”. It was a happy conclusion to  the Easter celebration that I had shared with many people, especially during the Paschal Triduum. Easter is to acknowledge that whatever happens in life, the end is always a victorious one, because God is our origin and our end!

In the first weeks of his pontificate, Pope Francis has shown us the way to a more human life. He indicates the path to become a church that is closer to people. We do not need to make big gestures of solidarity and love to the downtrodden. We only need to be attentive to the small signs of the Risen Christ which are happening around us and get involved in the transformation of the Body of Christ. Easter is not an isolated, one-off  event. It is like a “stream that runs underground,” that accompanies us throughout life. We are  Easter People. The presence of the Risen Lord is always at hand. In order to make our life meaningful, we need to open our eyes and ears in order to say like Mary Magdalene: “I have seen the Lord”.

 Let us join hands so that the Paschal message may reach as many as possible

I wish  all viewers an Easter that lasts, until the day we are called to see the Risen Lord face to face.

Fr. Jeremias
      Comboni Provincial


Easter Sunday was celebrated with much joy at Mercy House.   Having given the Lord His due worship in our services, we gathered to celebrate with a lunch, the distribution of Easter eggs and the presence of a very large Easter bunny.  Never before has there been so much joy at our Easter celebration.
The highlight of the afternoon was certainly the arrival of the bunny.  All the children wanted to be picked up by him and one little girl, seen in the photo, even decided to share her Easter egg with him.  
He led them in dance which was great fun for all.  Our Comboni Fathers community came to share the joy with us.  
Father John and Brother Eric are seen in the photo at the lunch
Provincial Father Jeremias chatting to Marc
Father Melese was persuaded to climb onto the roof to facilitate the Easter egg rain from heaven and the children had great fun catching them. 


The happy event took place on Saturday 6 April: Olivier and Linda have planned it for so long.  It was a beautiful occasion, and especially meaningful to us at Mercy House, because we have cared for and known Olivier and his sister for 16 years, since they fled from the genocide to South Africa. 
The first photo shows Olivier leaving for his first day at school in South Africa, in January 1998, with his sister, Denise on the right. 

a whole 15 years later

That is how long we have had the privilege of knowing Olivier and he has never let us down yet… only a good track record! 

Congratulations Olivier and Linda: we wish you everything of the best for your future life together. May you always treasure this day, and renew it, gratefully.