Lent study notes from The Leprosy Mission

Our Five Senses

Lent, the period of 40 days before Easter and beginning on Ash Wednesday, is a season of reflection and preparation before the celebrations of Easter.  Lent recalls the events leading up to and including Jesus’ crucifixion. Easter celebrates the resurrection of Jesus after his death on the cross.

This year The Leprosy Mission Lent study notes is themed on our five senses – sight, hearing, taste, touch and smell.  Along the way we pause to marvel at our Creator’s handiwork. Perhaps the key Bible verse for all the studies is from Psalm 139:14, “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” We chose our theme, among other things, as a reminder of the impairment of the senses experienced by those with leprosy, an impairment that damages and diminishes lives so drastically.

Each of the five studies stands alone, so they can be used in whatever order you prefer; in a group or for personal study.
A suggested outline for your group time together is
• Social time – have a coffee and chat for ten minutes at the start
• Worship – perhaps sing a couple of songs and/or pray together
• Study – work your way through the notes at your own pace
• Closing prayer
We hope this Lent will be a special one for you as we renew our focus on the Lord, his death and resurrection, and become once again “lost in wonder, love and praise.”

The Lent study notes for 2011 can be downloaded from our website

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Kevin’s in India!

 

Kevin Baugh, Programmes Funding Officer, is currently on his first Indian field visit to monitor The Leprosy Mission projects. He’s been thrown in at the deep end and in the first few days of his trip he has already visited The Leprosy Mission hospital in Kolkata, taken a seven hour train journey to see Bankura Vocational Training Centre, visited the home for elderly people affected by leprosy, seen The Leprosy Mission’s hospital in Purulia and then travelled all the way back to Kolkata for flight transfers to the next region where we work – exhausting stuff! He’s just finished visiting our partner projects at Brighter Future in Vizianagaram, from where he reports: ‘All well here – having amazing time – India is all total assault on all your senses & emotions. I have fallen in love with the Indian people! I have been blown away by Brighter Future – the staff are amazing too – in fact I have been saying that where ever I have been’

We wish Kevin all the best for the rest of his trip and hope he doesn’t wear that shirt back in the office !!

 

 

Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows. Isaiah 1: 17b NLT

A respected wife,daughter-in-law and member of her community; Rekah had no idea how leprosy could change everything

Leprosy is a cruel disease; it robs people of their health and they are frequently denied the most basic entitlements. Often, they don’t even have a voice in their local communities. At The Leprosy Mission, we don’t think that’s acceptable, so a large part of our work focuses on justice and dignity.
 
Rekah was rejected and stigmatised because of leprosy. She told her story to Neelmani, Naini hospital’s counsellor.

‘My village is more than 100km from here, so my brother brought me. Before visiting here he took me to a private doctor who said, ‘this is leprosy and you must take her to Naini hospital’. I spent a lot of time, energy and money trying to find out what my disease was.

‘Previously I worked in the fields. That made my feet worse. I have anaesthetic hands and feet. If I get a burn I don’t realise it.

Neelmani explains that Rekah has a husband and children, but he is neglectful of his family and plays no supporting role.

‘I was taking MDT [multidrug therapy, the cure for leprosy]. After a few months I developed an ulcer and was admitted. One day at home, while I was sleeping, a cat or a rat had bitten my anaesthetic foot. It was bleeding and I was very disturbed and thought ‘I will die. Now I won’t cause any problems to anyone’, so didn’t call my brother. It became worse so I called him to bring me here. He took responsibility for me and consoled me. He said, “I’ll look after you, even though it is very difficult”.

‘I’ve had some stigma from the community because of leprosy. The family and community use bad words about me. Some relatives say “she is smelly; take her to the leprosy hospital”. Before the leprosy, everyone was normal to me. I was a good wife and daughter-in-law, everyone respected me.’ 

At this point Rekah became too distressed to continue.

Rekah found medical and emotional support at Naini hospital; without it, she would still be searching for the help she so desperately needs. If you can support our work at Naini, you will help to give leprosy-affected people back their voice, dignity and purpose.

Thank you for considering a donation