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Sunday, September 28, 2014

New Year

New Year
It's not the 1st of January, however many activities begin in September
Las Sunday, the 21St we had abig celebration for the Pastoral Year. All groups wearing their uniforms or their colorful scarves. There was singing and dancing just for the occasion, two offerings (one especially for the poors). I must say I was really impressed. These people aren't rich at all, nevertheless everyone one brought gifts, food and money for the less fortunate!
Also school began here in Bozoum, on Wednesday the 24th. Hundreds of kids are back for their studies. Our schools here are from pre-school to Secondary school and now host more than 1100 kids.  The good thing is also public schools are slowly reopening too, and this is really exceptional, as schools here usually reopen mid November early December. Thanks to our training and support (UNICEF and Czech Republic funding), teachers are back at work accepting this new challenge of an early start.
Maybe it's only one thing but it's very important that kids go to school so we can begin a normal life again.
Throughout this week we've kept busy preparing everything for our Patron's day, Saint Michael.

Confessions, doctrine and Mass: all is ready to celebrate our Lord protecting our community and city during such a trying year!

Saturday, September 6, 2014

I am, still alive

Here I am, still alive

I must thank Baby Jesus, Father Enrico for insisting that I'd leave Bozoum, Father Federico who miraculously found me an helicopter ride and the French military corps who brought me to bangui and took great care of me in their hospital, at the emergency room
Since last Monday, the 25th I fell ill with malaria. So I began treatment and it seemed not too bad, then it got worse, presenting vomit and blood traces in urine. By wednesday it was really bad so the doctor came by the following day, gave me an I.V. but things didn't improve at all.
Father Enrico looked for a plane but there were none. So Father Federico who is in Bouar contacted the French militaries who were ok to bring me to the capital with their helicopter. They left from Bossangoa at 4.30 pm, landed 45 minutes later in Bozoum and picked me up. The flight was really something, it feels like being on a truck on a dirt patch. Lots of noise and vibrations, however the nurses managed to give me more I.V.s 
In one hour and a half we were in Bangui, the military hospital is basically on the army base's runway. A French Colonel responsible for the Medical Team came by and spoke italian to me. His name was Lanteri, born in Briga, a border village. In the following day he kept an eye on me and we eventually ended up conversing in Piemontese.
The French have a great hospital camp, really well organised, with emergency room, O.R and stuff. They immediately took care of me, under observation. The first days I was really sick, low blood pressure and loss of blood. They attended me well, very professionally and with humanity. I couldn't eat (first time I managed to was on Tuesday) and only the following Monday I managed to stand up for few moments. I left the hospital on Wednesday and now I'm here at the Centre d'Accueil resting. I read, pray and get things in order.
Big thanks to everybodu for they good feelings, and for the prayers! The first days, when I was really sick and I was conked out (worse than usual!) I often saw or at least I think that's what happened - several people around me. Friends, acquaintances, people praying and being there for me.
So thank you all!