ALL OUR FRIENDS, FAMILY AND PRAYER PARTNERS:
ambling on at a slow pace, the days have whizzed
past at breakneck speed and we stand at the tail
end of another year, and its time again to greet
you with thanks and gratitude, and bless you in
the name of Jesus our Lord!
thoughts go to the day, four years ago, standing
hopelessly surrounded by the debris of the
Tsunami, with utter dejection, wondering what
was next? Your love, your care and unwavering
trust in us and the cause which we have
espoused, helped us to bestir ourselves, and
begin building “with worn out tools”. Today
when I stand in our newly built complex, the
Home for children broken, battered and made
destitute due to war and other calamities
that’ve befallen them, I can hardly believe how
far we’ve come, since that day. God has walked
with us every step of the way. He has carried
us in His bosom as a “nursing mother”!
In our war
bedeviled land we’ve been through a turbulent
year. With a fresh offensive against the rebels
in the North of the country and a grueling task
in the East, of resettling and rebuilding the
lives of those who were displaced in the regions
that have been liberated, it is becoming
increasingly clear that winning peace is far
more difficult than winning the war. Winning
the war militarily without resolving the
underlying issues, will only give rise to the
conflict in a different guise.
without first making peace with His maker can
never make peace with his neighbour nor be at
peace with himself. Once a year we stand face
to face with this truth when we celebrate
Christmas and reflect on the birth of God’s son
and his mission to earth. He came to reconcile
man with God, and man with man. If we fail to
understand this message, we fail to celebrate
the true meaning of Christmas. May God’s son,
the prince of peace breath His peace over our
land and every land that is embroiled in strife
the story how three youths in China went to
their religious head and in a fervour of love
for Christ told him-“Sir, we want to die for
Christ” and their head had happened to tell them
that dying for Christ was easy enough but to
live for Him was more difficult.
I know for
sure that each and every one of you are fighting
your own battles, climbing your own mountains,
trying your utmost and doing your very best to
live your life worthy of the one who called you
and gave himself for you. Some of you we know
by name, most of you we don’t. But rest
assured, that we at Samaritan Children’s Home do
remember each and every one of you in our daily
prayers. You are represented before the throne
of God everyday as we lift you up in prayer.
again for linking arms with us in this
ministry. May the coming year draw you even
closer to Christ, and make you long for and
await His soon return.
and warm regards from all of us at Samaritan
Fonder/Director, Samaritan Children's Home
Mylampavelli, Eastern Sri Lanka
Newsletter update from Pastor Sanders - Dec 2006
Dear friends, well wishers and prayer partners,
Hope this finds you in the best of health and
happiness. Wish you and your loved ones a joyous Christmas and a
peaceful New Year!
I feel the urge to provide you with a detailed
update of our reconstruction effort and the political and social
realities. I do apologize for not always keeping you informed of
our progress here in Batticaloa, eastern Sri Lanka. You have
however been patient and have continued to support our children's
mission through your monetary gifts and prayers. I thank you for
your sacrificial giving, prayers and trust you have bestowed upon us
to carry out God's work.
We purchased 25 acres of land in the fall of
2005 more in-land and away from the old Navalady location that was
destroyed by the 2004 tsunami. Soon after the purchase of land the
reconstruction effort began in earnest. Immediately we were faced
with a number of difficulties due to the political and social unrest
caused mainly by the resumption of hostilities between the Sri
Lankan forces and the Tamil Tigers (aka LTTE or rebels).
Hostilities and the post tsunami reconstruction work resulted in a
shortage of skilled workers and a several-fold increase in prices of
construction material and labor. To counter this situation we were
forced to find skilled workers from outside the Batticaloa district
and retain them by providing food and lodging.
Reconstruction of multiple buildings is in
different stages, but importantly the two main buildings: The Boys'
Home Complex and the Girls' Home Complex are almost completed and we
have so far admitted 81 children. About 5 to 10 children seek
admission every week and we are taking in only the most needy ones.
Most of them are from the north and east where the fighting is most
intense and the casualties heavy. If you remember at the time of
the Tsunami we had 28 children and of course all of whom were saved
by the grace of God on that horrifying day. We have 39 girls and 42
boys and they range in age from 6 to 17. All of whom attend the
local public school and they will do so until they complete the 12th
standard. As intended depending on the availability of funds we
plan to open a Vocational Training School for the school leaving
I.a. List of new buildings under
Girls' Home complex (GHC): Currently has the
capacity to accommodate up to 60 girls
Boys' Home complex (BHC): Current capacity to
accommodate up to 60 boys
Chapel Office and Children's Recreation Centre
Out-door kitchen (ODK)
Additional Study Room (ASR)
Stores and Library (S&L)
Main gate and entrance (MGE)
** GHC and BHC are almost completed and other
buildings are about 80% completed
II. Current political climate:
A Norwegian-brokered cease-fire in 2002 was
supposed to end the violence, in which as many as 65,000 people were
killed, many of them civilians. In the last six months, however,
sporadic clashes between government troops and rebels along their de
facto borders have escalated into what many here refer to as an
undeclared war. Nordic truce monitors estimate about 1,500 people
have died since the upsurge in violence since December last year.
The United Nations' refugee agency estimates about 170,000 people
have fled their homes since April to escape the near daily exchange
of artillery fire, and are now living in cramped, unsanitary
conditions in churches, temples or out in the open. Most of the
fighting has been focused around the eastern port of Trincomalee,
Batticaloa, and in Jaffna, where the 500,000 residents remain under
a on again off again curfew, and food, water and other staples are
Recent talks in Geneva, Switzerland between the
two main factions: the Sri Lankan government delegation and the LTTE
failed to result in any meaningful outcome. In all this fighting
it's the civilian population that has suffered and is suffering the
worst. In spite of the presence of so many foreign NGOs
(non-governmental agency) and the Norwegian peace envoys, one cannot
understand why the insane killing of the civilian population is
allowed to continue. No one hardly ever speaks of the human
suffering the civilian population is subjected to in the midst of
all this fiendish fighting that's been going on for months now. All
what the people want are peace and a decent standard of living and
this life of hell on earth to end. Its time the international
community stepped in and did something concrete and decisive to end
this madness and alleviate the hardships of the innocent civilian.
III. Immediate and future needs:
Due to the increase in hostilities we are
experiencing more children seeking refuge and we would prayerfully
consider adding extensions to the two children's complexes in
addition to the Vocational Training School as mentioned above.
However adding infrastructure to meet the growing needs is only
part of the challenge, and as we grow we are also in need of
reliable and committed people to staff the children's home. We
would be interested in talking to those who are committed to our
cause and would like to come and help us run the children's home.
We will of course provide food, lodging and a monthly stipend.
Samaritan Home Relief, our US fundraising arm,
will continue to raise funds for the up keep and maintenance of our
expanded Samaritan Children's Home. Due to social and political
uncertainties and the effect it has on the cost of essential items
it is hard to estimate our monthly running expenses, but we assume
we would need something in the region of US$5,000 a month to support
120 children and 9 full time employees.
Please note Samaritan Home Relief remains a
volunteer organization. In other words, we don't have any paid
staff and my family and friends volunteer their time and resources
to raise funds. Which means barring minor miscellaneous expenses
all your sacrificial donations are sent directly to Eastern Sri
Lanka towards the reconstruction work and to carry out our mission
of providing a loving, caring and nurturing home to the most needy
and impoverished children in the North and East of Sri Lanka.
Samaritan Home Relief is a 501 (c) 3
organization registered in the state of MD and all donations are tax
Please spend some time to browse our
reconstruction pictures (click
here for the pictures) and feel free to write to me at
firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or comments.
Thank you for your prayers and continued
support. May God bless you.
Pastor Dayalan Sanders, Director/Founder
On behalf of the staff and children of
Samaritan Children's Home
Relief, Inc., has an account set up at Chevy Chase Bank. For more
information, please email to
email@example.com or call 1-301-279-2947.
© Samaritan Home Relief, Inc.
To read the articles from the Gazette.net and the Washington Post, please select a link below.
An Orphanage Once Called Home-By John Lancaster (Washington Post July 24, 2005)
Mission To Shelter Orphans Stymied - By Jacqueline L. Salmon (Washington Post Jan 31, 2005)
The sea is coming (Gazette.net Dec 29, 2004)
Outracing The Sea, Orphans in His Care (Washington Post Dec. 30, 2004)
Md. Woman Seeks Help Reviving Sibling's Dream (Washington Post Dec. 30, 2004)
Click on the images below to see the damage to the children's home by the tsunami.