Last year at El shaddai was full of memories and improvements, and we are all excited to share with you what God has in store for 2016! The year has just begun, and so many exciting things are already taking place! In January, we graduated two of our children, Siboniso and Nolwazi, and sent them off to college in South Africa! Siboniso is training to become a chef and Nolwazi is training to be a hotel director. We are very proud of the steps they are taking, and would love your prayers for them to continue to prosper in their new life.
At the beginning of January, we also accepted 5 new volunteers into our home. 4 of them come from the United Kingdom and are volunteering as teachers, and one of them comes from the United States, who is teaching as well as leading chapel for all of the children. Our Father has such an amazing way of placing people in our ministry at the right place and at the right time. We have also welcomed new management into El Shaddai. The Bothma family has come to oversee the operations with the pig farm, and other maintenance jobs.
As 2015 came to an end, so did the school year. In January, the children finished up their final days of vacation and transitioned back into school. A small group of our own were struggling with their studies, and we prayed for God to provide a helping hand. Soon enough, we discovered a wonderful school that helped care for youth who struggled with learning disabilities. The school's name is called "Saint Joseph" and our children, BoyBoy, Takhona, Lindo, Thembelihle, Mthokozisi, Vuyisile, and Mecelani have been sent there so that they may reach their full potential with their education.
Along with the new staff and new school year, we are full of excitement as we also plan for a new year of fun with all of our children. It has just been 3 months and we have already celebrated many birthdays! This past weekend, we took our youngest teens, Welcome, Dean, and Phiwa out to town to celebrate their birthdays. They were privileged to see the new Batman vs. Superman movie. We are also preparing for El Shaddai's first ever "End-of-term" camp! From sleeping outside in tents to competing against one another in many games and activities, our children have an eventful break in store for them!
I believe that the most amazing thing that has been taking place here at El Shaddai is the amount of fire that has placed itself in the hearts of the children. Since January, the youth have been growing more in depth with their relationship with Jesus. The chapel services alone are overwhelming us with satisfaction. hearts are breaking for our heavenly Father, and the lives of these young ones are being morphed and sculpted in the utmost beautiful way. Several of our teens will be baptized soon and we are excited to see the young leaders that they are becoming. Jesus is moving at El Shaddai, and it is absolutely beautiful!
As we are very joyful and excited to see the many wonderful things happening in Swaziland, we are also sad to share some news with very heavy hearts. One of our beautiful children, Khetsiwe, has been diagnosed with PDS which is a heart disease. She is in dire need of an operation, and it has become hard on all of our hearts. We are in desperate need of prayer for her heart as well as funds to come in so that the doctors are able to perform the operation. We believe in a God who makes the blind see and the deaf hear with a snap of his fingers, so we lack anything but confidence that our Abba Father will provide for our beautiful Khetsiwe.
God is performing wonders at El Shaddai Childrens Home, and we are so blessed to share everything that He is doing with all of you. God bless you, and we hope your new year is going great!
The authors of this blog are various and sundry, from the long-term staff and volunteers at El Shaddai, to missions trip volunteers, and maybe even a few people in between.