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Good wishes for 2007 from Mercy House

To all our friends at St Richards. We at Mercy House would like to wish you a happy and blessed New Year!

Christmas is always a happy time at Mercy House. Our refugees decorated the lounge so beautifully -the Christmas tree was there. This time we do not have more pictures of our Christmas celebration, because things did not work out quite as planned. We had a lovely lunch together and at 3.00 p.m. Father Christmas was due to land on the garage roof and descend on a ladder, with his angels. At exactly that time, the rain came down in buckets! There was a big crowd there, and everyone had to run into our lounge which is small. It was packed, like the inn at Bethlehem, and alternative plans had to be made. In spite of the change of plan it all worked out very well and people enjoyed themselves which was what mattered...

The New Year - coming down to earth happened early simply because children go back to school after the long summer holiday in the second week of January for their new academic year. You see Jacinto (Angola) and Dibaba (DRC) dressed up and ready on the first day of school. I took them and Shadadi to the shops for stationery and uniforms, school shoes etc the week before and the wonderful funding from St Richard's Christmas Fair, (more than 1,000) enabled us to purchase what they needed and eroded that sum considerably!

The same funds also paid the fees for Richard and MacDonald to enrol at the technical college for a semester of Electrical Engineering. Thanks to Mr Alastair Moffat, we managed to get a bursary for Christian with Ozz Foundries for him to do a degree in the same discipline. Danny (Sudan) and Dominique (Rwanda) left today for a college in Kwazulu where we managed to get bursaries for them to do a degree in Education... Manasse who finished his Bachelor of Education there last year, has now got a job in the Transkei. And so it goes on..... It's wonderful to see all these things happen and people getting onto their feet slowly.

On behalf of all our young people whose lives you are changing we say a very sincere thank you. We wish you a good new year: growth, courage and blessings in abundance.

From Diana