Tag Archives: India

Who do we trust for our safety?

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The Scripture tells us that our safety does not come from military power. The Old Testament is full of the prophets telling the people not to trust the weapons of war to protect them. There’s a clear message that hoping to find security through the military is a dangerous and  false hope.

The Bible tells the people of faith that “our hope is in the name of our Lord, who made both heaven and earth.”  It’s a message we desperately need to hear and to heed today.

We have the largest military budget the world has ever seen. No other country, no other 12 countries, spend as much on national defense as the United States. This is not just wrong. In a world where we have 20,000 of our human family dying daily from hunger and malnutrition, spending this amount on military defense is both abhorrent and morally repugnant.

We can end hunger in the next 15 years according to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. But we will never do it wasting hundreds of billions of dollars on wasteful, unnecessary, and sinful military spending. It’s time to trust in the Lord.

The Trump Way

This photo taken in Mumbai, India is worth far more than a thousand words. And it is extremely timely, as well.

On his very first full day in office BLOTUS began  with an egocentric presentation at the CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia attacking the press. It was his normal “more lies than truth” routine. At issue was the size of his smaller than average hands inauguration crowds. (Obviously, size does matter for our country’s new Liar-in-Chief)

Then, only hours later his press secretary gave a five minute press statement again attacking and denouncing the press while repeating the BLOTUS lies. Naturally, none of the press were allowed to ask questions.

The Trump Way is to lie about the lies he lied only hours or days earlier. He castigates the press because facts are not his friends.  I stand with the press. We must not give in to the bullying and intimidation of BLOTUS. We must not tolerate the “gaslighting.” We all must hold him accountable for ever lie he spews forth, large or small.

The Trump Way is the way of dictators and despots throughout history. But, it is not the American way. And it’s certainly not my way.

 

changing the world

The numbers of extremely poor continue to drop around the globe. Working together, we are changing the world.

The chart pictured above illustrates the good news. The Millennium Development Goals (from 2000 -2015), and now the Sustainable Development Goals (2016-2030), are working, and working well.

We are on track to end hunger by 2030. Let’s continue striving to make it happen. Working together we can achieve a world without hunger, and we can do it in our lifetime.

 

truly offensive

A brief, yet powerful sermon we all need to heed. Having just returned from a trip that included both India and Nicaragua, this resonates with me more than ever. We all need to stop being so sensitive to personal affronts and far more sensitive to the real pain, greed, and injustice that fills the world.

a joy I find nowhere else

It’s almost 5:00pm and I am on my way home from India and Nicaragua. I am feeling a little ragged around the edges, but it will definitely be good to sleep in my own bed tonight.

I am currently in Atlanta. My flight gets into RDU after 9:00. By the time I get my car and get on the road it will probably be around midnight before I see Lynchburg. Since we left the hotel just a little after 5am that makes for yet another long day, but nothing a good night’s sleep won’t take care of.

I thoroughly enjoyed my brief time in Bangalore. But, the time in Nicaragua was like a cure for all that ails me. Being back in the field brings a joy I can find no where else. It makes all the stress of long flights a long layovers bearable.

I’ll be glad to get home…but the truth is that I would far rather still be in the mountains of Nicaragua working to change the lives of the least of these among us.

Back where it all began

I left Bangalore, India on Monday morning a little after 4:00 after a full day and evening of events. After a mind-numbing flight through Dubai and Houston, Texas, I arrived in Managua, Nicaragua Tuesday night sometime after 8:00. I finally got to my hotel around 9:00 or so.

A driver picked me up Tuesday morning at 5:30 for the three hour drive up to Matagalpa where I met the Fill the Bowls team. We spent the day visiting two schools we support. Since this is the rainy season, we were soaked by the time we got back into the city around 4:30 when we all agreed it was time for a late lunch/early dinner.

It was a fantastic day and again demonstrated to me the immense power that is generated when we all work together. Fill the Bowls is changing the lives of hundreds of children in the four villages where we are working.

For me, this is a special trip. First, I am back in Nicaragua. Nica is the first country I visited when I started Stop Hunger Now. That trip was in January 1998.

Another reason for this trip being so meaningful for me is that I am here as a board member of Fill the Bowls, a nonprofit organization founded and directed by Chessney Barrick, a close and very dear friend, and a former member of the Stop Hunger Now staff.

Seeing the excellent work being done by Chessney and Fill the Bowls is just one more affirmation that we can make a real difference. Working together, we are helping to end hunger in Nicaragua.

I am back where it all started still working to end hunger in our lifetime. Life is good.

Back in Bangalore

I arrived here in Bangalore, India sometime after midnight this morning. By the time I had gone through immigration, picked up my duffle bag, cleared customs and exchanged some dollars into rupees, it was after 1 am.

The Palms, where I normally stay in Bangalore was full so my excellent staff booked me into the Taj Bangalore Airport. Since the Taj was less than a 10 minute walk that’s what I did. Even after one in the morning the heat and humidity had me breaking a sweat before I got to the hotel.

The staff was as courteous and friendly as I expected, and I got to my room around 2 am. After a hot shower, I still couldn’t get to sleep so I read until after 3 am.

Later today I hope to meet with Stop Hunger Now India’s director. Dola is a dedicated, passionate leader in the fight to end hunger, and I am really looking forward to some time with him.

Tomorrow I am to make a brief presentation at an event hosted by J.P. Morgan Bank, where I get the honor of thanking them for their continued generous support of our efforts to end hunger in our lifetime.

And at 4:30 am on Tuesday, I catch a flight to Managua, Nicaragua. Once there I will switch hats, and represent the board for Fill the Bowls, another life-changing nonprofit.

I’ll admit that the schedule is a little rough, but I wouldn’t change a thing. This is just too much fun.

Stop Hunger Now responds to India flooding

The following news brief is taken from a SHN staff memo:

Stop Hunger Now India Flood Response Continues

Stop Hunger Now India continues to provide relief to those affected by the severe flooding in Chennai. Executive Director Dola Mohapatra has issued an update on the response, as well as an appeal to donors for additional support. Here is an excerpt:

As an immediate response to this emergency situation, Stop Hunger Now India, in partnership with Treasure Life Foundation, Hope Foundation and Rural Relief Network/SAARP (as well as few other local NGOs and civic groups) has provided nearly 150,000 meals to over 5,000 families in Chennai and Cuddalore areas, including the cut-off pockets in rural Panchayats.

As you may have been seeing the news items across the TV channels, the situation is quite grave and we have been receiving SOS requests from a number of local groups.  The field teams responding to the current situation have requested immediate help for food packets, medical supplies, clothes etc.

We are gearing up to send 300,000meals for the affected families.  We also have received requests for mats, tarpaulins, water-filters, tents and bed sheets, water containers, warm clothes, school supplies for children etc.  We have a warehouse in Bangalore where these materials are being collected and the field team will be able to pick up all these once a truck load of materials are gathered.