Faith the size of a mustard seed…

After a much needed sleep we headed out to see what The Leprosy Mission in Mozambique is doing. After a quick meet and greet at the Pemba office we went to visit the local ALEMO group. ALEMO was started in 2000 when a group of 13 people affected by leprosy decided to get together and do something positive. From these simple and humble beginnings there are now 1500 ALEMO members in 67 groups around the Cabo Delgado Province!
I was amazed at how much they had achieved, how far they had come. But perhaps what impressed me most was the drive to keep going, to continue to change things, to have hope and a vision. They are not content to be satisfied with their achievements and rest on their laurels.
This group, with the help from The Leprosy Mission, gives individuals an opportunity to learn new skills and trades, to get an education, to be integrated into their local communities and to have a voice. Their newest project involves getting people affected by leprosy identification documents, without which they cannot receive government help or travel to different regions. It is a slow and sometimes costly process, but one which gives the previously ignored and forgotten people a voice.
We are lucky that in the UK we have a voice, no matter whether or not we have an easily curable disease such as leprosy. Yet so often I find myself grumbling about all sorts of situations – politics for example, the way our country or local government is run. The way of the wider world perhaps, the injustices and the way others are treated. It can be easy to forget our voice and to be rendered mute. The problem is too big, our voice is too quiet.
Yet today I am reminded about mighty oaks coming from tiny acorns, from huge trees coming from mustard seeds. From 13 people with a vision and a desire to speak out and change the world for those affected by leprosy in the town of Pemba, to a province wide group with a membership of 1500 – what a mighty oak that is! With God no problem is too big to tackle, so what are you going to use your voice for today?

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