Working for One Body Village, having a day off was a luxury that we couldn't afford. Regardless of the circumstances, date, or time, Father Martino and Mother Ngoc were there whenever the children needed help.
Mother Ngoc was sick. She had had a high fever and displayed other symptoms of the flu for over a month. She was pale, her voice was hoarse. But when I reported of a child in desperate need of help from One Body Village, she was the first to spring into action.
It was a very early morning start, yet we -- a child, her family and myself -- would not arrive to OBV's gates til the afternoon.
It was Dr. Ehum's second time in Vietnam and Cambodia, to visit the beloved girls he had met last year. A Korean-American with his own medical practice in the USA, he closed for half a month to spend precious time with the children.
During his stay, while short, it seemed he didn't get much sleep, with most if not all of this time spent with the girls, whether it was playing with them in the front yard, hanging out in the community room, waking them up and walking them to school, helping them with their studies, participating in household chores and eating meals with them. When the girls slept, he patrolled the area to make sure the girls were safe and well rested.
Visiting the old house of OBV's Cambodia in a small Vietnamese's village filled with so many stories of undocumented Vietnamese trap. Where children laugh and play in streets not knowing what the future lie ahead. Please keep them in your prayers.
Every year, OBV say 'see you later' to our girls, as they travel home to their villages to spend Tet with their families. A few of our girls haven't seen their families since they arrived, and are eager to travel -- despite the long distances to places like DakLak -- to be reunited with their loved ones.
It'll be two weeks without the usual chaos of getting the girls ready for school, for meals, and for bed, and we look forward to having them back with us, refreshed and ready for the new year!
Click here to view the Vietnamese version titled "Tết Của Các Con"
an old article...
For me, this Christmas, Tet holidays and my birthday came earlier than usual! It is not because of the warm weather or the passing of time, but for the human heart is blooming! Do you know why? I would like to share with you some emails and letters I have just received:
- Mail #1: (after my evening flights were informed)
I wonder if you still remember me, but I still remember you thanks to your writings, your prayers and advice that helpfully dissuaded me from killing my own child. At present I am very happy thanks to God’s blessings. When I decided to keep my child I did not think I would be as happy as I am today. My child is now 4 months old and so cute. I have been back to work. I would like to share my happiness to you and please do not forget to pray for me. I always pray that God will bless you on your journeys.
I have seen your travel plan for January. I wish I could meet you once, but what a pity I cannot have that opportunity! I wish you a happy birthday!
An old article...
For parishioners, especially young ones in the parish of Chợ Cầu (address 30/7 Nguyễn Văn Quá, 12th District 12, Ho Chi Minh City), the occasion of New Year 2013 was a wonderful time when they can to attend the preaching session of Father Martino Nguyễn Bá Thông. For Fr. Martino, this was his fifth time to present the journey of 2013. The audience gave him a warm welcome.
Fr. Martino’s session started at 7:30 PM. His team comprised of volunteers from U.S.A. The room was filled with songs, games, and chats about Fr. Martino and his topics. There were first-time attendees showing their excitement and curiosity.
The children have been waiting in anticipation for Father Thong and the volunteers of OBV Canada' arrival just like the way they wait for spring. The quality time spent together brings most sincere happiness. The spring time for them thus is not only for three months but ongoing throughout the entire year as long as they live together with One Body Village.
You teach us to live all our hearts. Full power and full love. You danced with us in the evening and in the early morning while it was still dark you arose and prepared breakfast for us like mommies do it for their own children. Love you. Thank you so much.
Just a few simple words and pictures from our training session to the Youth Leaders, in the prevention of Sexual Child Abuse, organized for Sunday the 27th November, 2016. The seminar was held at the Youth Leaders' Convention 2016 at the Parish of Phu Cuong, with OBV's psychologist Duy Ngyen leading the discussion.
OBV just welcome our newest addition to the family, from a province far, far away. It took the family days to make the journey to us, with the child having only been sexually abused not so long before that.
The child and her family all came together to visit OBV, with the purpose being to understand the work we do, and the kind of life provided to survivors of abuse. OBV was quite stunned looking at this child: a tiny frame with unsteady legs. Stained clothes, and sad eyes staring blankly that much reminded us of another survivor we had taken under our wing only 2 years earlier. The family, in turn, were equally stunned, for they had never imagined that a safe haven for young victims of abuse existed, and they immediately and wholeheartedly expressed their wishes to have their daughter raised and nurtured here. The child, despite knowing she'd be far away from her family could also sense that she'd be safer and happier here, and agreed to stay without any protest.
It was another Sunday morning with no rest for the wicked. With a special invitation for the father of the Parish, OBV's psychology team headed out to give another seminar on the "Prevention of child sex abuse", to over 600 of the youth at the Parish of Tan Phuoc in Tan Binh Saigon. With such a big group ranging in different age groups, we decided it was necessary to split us the seminar into 2 Sundays: 2/10 and 9/10.
Like every other holiday so far, this year Halloween was during a weekday, and as a result OBV in district 9 decided to celebrate early, on Sunday Oct 20 - Halloween eve.
Compared to previous year, this year's halloween was not as pumping, we didn't carve any pumpkins or make any 'spirit cakes', but we were still able to celebrate in different ways: with games and team building exercises. Split into three groups, they were put through a trivia test with the topic focusing on halloween such as ghosts and ghouls, spirits, horror murder stories etc. They very much enjoyed this activity, despite only knowing the more 'famous' ghost stories and legends.