The Catholic Diocese of Moshi, Tanzania
This weekend we are challenged by the Gospel to feed those who are hungry. Here I am bringing to you the neediest, the most vulnerable and the hungriest little human beings you will ever encounter: the orphan children of the Catholic Diocese of Moshi, Tanzania!
There are over 16,000 orphans in the Catholic Diocese of Moshi. Most of them live with the families of their relatives (an uncle, aunt or family friend). The majority of them are victims of the HIV-AID pandemic. But some orphans are abandoned because they are born albino, deaf, blind, or with other disabilities. You can visit the Moshi Diocese website to see the statistics.
The local churches take care of children in families that cannot afford basic necessities; however, those without relatives or caretakers are kept in orphanages. These orphanages house a total of 295 orphans under the care of the Diocese of Moshi. Their needs are basic:
The total amount might seem scary, but what this Sunday's Gospel is asking us is to give what we have (as small as 5 loves) and leave them with Jesus. He knows what to do to feed them!
Some of these costs are reduced by the older kids who can provide some of their own food through gardening, etc. Our main focus is food. You can choose to feed one kid for a month or year or give him/her medication for an entire year! As you can see from the numbers, the Diocese of Moshi cannot meet the orphans' needs without your help. So please, help us!
The Diocese of Moshi has two special schools for children with disabilities: one grade school and one high school, currently under construction. This high school will be the first and probably only high school for disabled children in the entire country. You can see the link here.
Although Tanzania is the most peaceful country in Africa, it is also one of the poorest countries in the world! The local people are working so hard to make ends meet. They do not have much to give to support these orphans. Please, listen to your heart and respond to the voice of the Spirit of love and gratitude to God who have blessed us abundantly compared to these our brothers and sisters. Jesus says to you and me, "There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves (Matthew 14:16). Our opening prayer this Sunday addresses this issue as we pray: "Draw near to your servants (orphans), O Lord, and answer their prayers with unceasing kindness..." I do believe the prayers of these orphans are answered by God using you to act on His behalf. Thank you for giving them hope and the message that despite their misfortune in life, God still loves them; that their miseries have not separated them from the love of Christ.
God bless you,
Fr. Peter Siamoo
(For Orphans of Moshi Diocese)
Watch this video for more on the 2014-2015 mission:
Mission Appeal Video OLL.wmv
Click the link above, or send a check to:
Our Lady of the Lake
650 A Avenue
Lake Oswego, OR 97034
Please make checks payable to OLL
Fr. Peter Siamoo
August 2nd and 3rd at all Masses
Fr. Peter Siamoo, the youngest of 7 kids, was born and raised on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. He had his high school and college seminary education in Tanzania and was ordained a priest of the Moshi Diocese on July 17, 1999. He came to America about 9 years ago as a student, first in North Canton, Ohio (Walsh Catholic University) where he graduated with his Masters in Theology, Education and Clinical Mental Health Counseling. He then came to Portland State University and graduated last summer with a doctorate in Education Leadership and Administration. He is a priest in residence at St. Pius X Church in Portland and a chaplain at Providence St. Vincent Medical Center. He will be with us to represent his diocese to make a mission appeal for the orphans of the Moshi Diocese.
Contact Fr. Peter Siamoo through e-mail or by calling 330-639-7919