Chan Thang

Chan Thang Go Home!

God rescues a boy from…an orphanage

Dear Friends,

I wish orphan care ministry was always smiles, giggles and success, but it isn’t. Unfortunately, we sometimes find a “bad apple” orphanage director who isn’t honest with us, or due to some other ongoing, unbiblical behavior we must end their support. It grieves me deeply because I know it’s the children who suffer most from a director’s poor choices. Though we may discontinue our financial support of a particular orphanage, however, that doesn’t mean our prayer support for their kids should stop.

The director of Shalom Orphanage in Kalaymyo turned out to be one of those bad apples. But just two weeks ago God answered my prayers for the children of Shalom in an unexpected way—we met the parents of Chan Thang, one of the children living there, during a conference we held in a remote village. They told us their story—a very common one—about how they had to send their son to that orphanage due to their poverty.

We also brought good news to them and others in their village about how we could help families economically through Opportunity loans. For Chan’s parents, we’ve promised to loan them funds to purchase a milking cow to provide additional income—enough income that they will soon be able to bring their son home again! Chan hasn’t lived with his family since 2006.

Chan Thang represents one of 11 children from other orphanages that we’ve had problems with in the past, but whom will soon be reunited with their families. I’m so thankful that we can once again be involved with helping these precious children who deserve to be living with their families. Welcome home Chan!

For the children,

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

We recently sent Joney Thawng Hup to Chin State to hold conferences for families who had children in orphanages. In his conference in Thanglang, the families present represented 54 children from 7 villages who were in orphanages due to poverty.

All 6 of the orphans we support in Nepal are reported as being safe!

As you have probably already heard by now, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal over the weekend, leaving thousands dead and much destruction. Since Orphan’s Tear helps support 6 orphans who live with loving foster parents near the quake’s epicenter, I waited anxiously to learn if they were OK.

I’m happy and relieved to inform you that I just received word this morning from foster parents Trilok and Deepa Pradhan that their whole family is safe. According to Deepa, they are all frightened about returning to live in their house because it received some damage. The children are all staying in a nearby church that was not damaged.

Please pray for Trilok, Deepa, and their 6 foster children as they face the aftershocks, help others around them, and overcome the trauma they’ve experienced.

Heaven’s Family has set up a fund to help with relief for Nepal. You can give here.

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Filed under: Nepal

Cristina is hiding something.

Straightening lives that have been twisted by abuse and neglect has become a special calling of God on the life of Nicole Fitzpatrick, a Heaven’s Family missionary in Mexico. She has learned that Jesus’ love, poured out liberally and consistently over time, makes even the most broken and bent souls straight.

Cristina is one of those souls. Cristina was abused and then abandoned when she was 12 years old. When Nicole learned of her tragic situation, she took her into her own family, which consists of her husband and their two natural children, plus dozens of other children with stories similar to Cristina’s. And as time and healing went on, Nicole enjoyed seeing a joyful smile find its way from Cristina’s heart to her face, just like she’s witnessed on the faces of all her kids—kids who, when she first met them, didn’t know how to smile either.

But now 18, Cristina’s adolescent self-consciousness prevents her from doing so for fear of showing her mouth full of unattractive, crooked teeth. Nicole has felt compassion for Cristina’s plight, but only ever has funds for critical medical needs. One day, however, Nicole stepped out in faith and told Cristina that she believed God would provide so that she could get braces. Little did either know that their faith would be soon be rewarded, and in a way that unmistakably had God’s fingerprints all over it!

Knowing that Nicole’s children had general dentistry needs, we sent $300 from Orphan’s Tear’s Special Projects Fund this month to help provide for such needs. What we didn’t know was that $300 was the exact amount needed for Cristina’s braces. Now Nicole, a passionate servant of Jesus who has helped straighten many broken and bent lives, will also be helping to straighten teeth!

Cristina with her braces—and daring to smile again!

I love it when we can be a part of God’s plan to bless orphans…even with braces. Thanks to those of you who have given to the Special Projects Fund, Cristina will one day be able to flash a smile that reflects the joy and gratitude within her heart—a smile I believe you’ll one day see in heaven!

Thank you for your partnership that is bettering the lives of orphans!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Filed under: Mexico

This little boy is enjoying a luxury he’s never experienced before.

It’s been hard for the children to sleep each night…very hard. That’s because many have been sleeping on hardwood boards, and the others have had to sleep on old, thin mats.

These children, more than 30 of them, were at one time abandoned or abused, but now have found a home where they are loved and cared for in rural Mexico, thanks to the compassion and vision of Heaven’s Family-supported missionaries Jason and Nicole Fitzpatrick. As you may recall hearing late last year, we’ve expanded Orphan’s Tear’s sponsorship program into Mexico to help these children. It’s now possible for compassionate lovers of Jesus around the world to take part in the care of these precious children.

Sponsorship provides for each child’s basic need for nutritious food, shelter, education, clothing and medical care, but the children also have other needs that sponsorship funds cannot meet—such as mattresses. So last month we paid for all the children to receive new mattresses through Orphan’s Tear Special Projects! We also bought all of them new shoes, another big blessing.

Expressing her appreciation, Nicole Fitzpatrick wrote:

I just wanted to say THANK YOU for helping us out so much this month—wow! I feel so freed from a huge load. I have wanted to buy them nice mats/cushions for so long and was never able to.

So now, the children are enjoying a little luxury most of us take for granted: softer sleep!

Four excited kids with new mattresses

All the children showing off their new shoes!

Thank you all so much for your ongoing partnership to better the lives of orphans in Jesus’ name. May the Lord bless you!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Filed under: Mexico

Plaid is IN at Love and Mercy Shelter 2, as you can see in this photo of all the children sporting their new Christmas clothes!

Providing new clothes at Christmas for the children who live in orphanages—what are for most the only new clothes they receive all year—has been a great tradition at Orphan’s Tear for many years now, and Christmas 2014 was no different.

Except, perhaps, that this time sponsors didn’t receive an appeal beforehand as we’ve done in the past.

At the end of 2014 we were blessed to have enough donations left over from previous years to purchase new clothes for all the children in our sponsorship program. But I’m also thrilled to report that the excess was enough to purchase new clothes for children in 40 other orphanages—that means that over 700 kids received Christmas clothes for the first time!

Photos of children with their new clothes are streaming in, so I want to show you a few of them. Below are photos of 6 of the 71 orphanages that received Christmas clothes this year.

Bethany Children Development Center

New Life Children Center

Love Orphanage Home

Agape Orphanage Home

Zion Children Home

Peniel Children Home

Thank you all so much for your ongoing partnership to better the lives of orphans in Jesus’ name. May the Lord bless you in 2015!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Filed under: Myanmar

In front (left to right), sisters Hnin Tin Par, Bawi Hlei Par, and Sung Siang Dim, and behind (left to right) their Uncle Nawl Nawl and Aunt Biak Rem Mawi.

When the youngest of the three sisters above was just an infant, their father died from an unknown cause. Soon afterwards, their mother abandoned them to start a new life for herself, and the three girls were then placed in the custody of the village leaders.

Biak Rem Mawi and Nawl Nawl are the sisters’ aunt and uncle. They felt sympathy for the girls and invited the them to live with them even though they were quite poor themselves. They knew that the girls would be much better off with relatives than to just be three more children in a large orphanage.

We at Orphan’s Tear like the way Biak Rem Mawi and Nawl Nawl think, so we agreed to help them provide the home life these girls needed. After listening to their ideas, we decided to provide them with an Opportunity Loan from Orphan’s Tear’s Kinship Care Fund so that they could start a loom business. So far the business is a success, and I’m thrilled that the five of them can now thrive together as a family!

Thank you for supporting Orphan’s Tear!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Biak Rem Mawi standing in front of her money-making loom, made possible by a loan from Orphan’s Tear

Filed under: Kinship Care, Myanmar

Pau Biak Muang and Pastor James, director of New Heritage Orphanage in Myanmar.

As you may recall from the October Orphan’s Tear update, I told you about an exciting new plan to have sponsored children write letters to their sponsors. I’m now pleased to tell you that letters have started to come in!

Below is one such letter that I recently received from an orphaned boy in Myanmar that I felt was so precious I had to share it with ALL of you:

Dear Sponsor,

I am greeting you in the name of Jesus Christ. This child name is Pau Biak Muang. He is 13 years old. Now, he is studying at 6th standard, (7th grade). He has one close friend and his name is Maung Than Naing. As this child is coming from Chin state, he does not know how to write and read Burmese. At those times, his friend patiently explains on behalf of their teachers. He likes Science. Then, he likes to play football [soccer].

He has arrived to New Heritage in 2013. He was studying at Chin state with his parents. But, when his parents were passed away, one elder from the village sent this child to me for his education and future life. Though he has passed his 4th standard, he does not know how to read and write not only Burmese but Chin, his mother language. Therefore, as a father, I, Pastor James have written this letter on behalf of this child, Pau Biak Muang. We have divided two kinds of duty at our home. One is cleaning for the house and another is for [cleaning] the compound. After six months of his arrival to New Heritage, he accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Savior and Lord. He worships and praises God with the family and then, sometimes, he leads the service and gives a testimony.

He was so much happy when we had participated at one other Church for Christmas celebration last year. He said he was so happy and that was his unforgettable experience during last year. They were really happy for they had fellowship with many people. His future ambition is to become school teacher. Thanks for reading this letter patiently. We always pray for you in our daily prayer. May God bless you!

Your son,

Pau (written by Pastor James on behalf of Pau)

Without being able to read or write, Pau wouldn’t stand much of a chance of succeeding in life. That’s why I’m so happy for New Heritage and other orphanages like it that give kids like Pau the education they need to survive—and also the love and nurturing they need to thrive. And for Pau, his future looks bright because he has a sponsor who helps make his new life in Christ possible.

Pau cannot yet read or write, so he does all he can by drawing a picture for his sponsor

Pau enjoys playing with the orphanage’s new baby ducks

I’ll be keeping a sharp eye out for other letters that melt my heart, and I’ll try to share them with you when I can.

Thank you all so much for your ongoing partnership to better the lives of orphans in Jesus’ name. May the Lord bless you!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

The children of New Heritage Orphanage enjoying a rare treat.

Eating SNAKES?? Yuck! OK, I confess, this month has been slow when it comes to news from the orphanages that Orphan’s Tear serves, so I thought I’d spice it up a little, just in time for Thanksgiving! Actually, the children pictured above from New Heritage Orphanage in Yangon, Myanmar, are eating raw sugar cane, which is always a special treat.

The children help to plant a garden every year, and this year one of the fruits of their labors was sugar cane. The children were so excited to finally harvest it and enjoy a little reward for their hard work! I just hope they brush their teeth thoroughly afterwards (I’m a mom now, so I can’t help it!).

Flying High at the Airport

For most of us, a trip to the airport conjures up thoughts of dreaded security lines, delayed flights, hours of cramped, sardine-style seating and jet lag. Even many of our children have become jaded, preferring to stare at their smart phones or video games than watch planes or look out from their window seats.

Not so for children growing up in developing countries, however, many of whom have never been to an airport, and don’t own phones or video games. For the children of Grace Orphanage in Yangon, Myanmar, a field trip to the international airport is almost like going to Disney World, since they have little spare time or finances to make such trips as a group.

Field trip to the airport!

But as all good parents know, there are times when you need to treat your children to something special, and that’s what the directors of Grace decided to do. And they turned it into an opportunity to challenge them to work hard in school so that they can get good jobs and perhaps one day travel themselves. Here’s what they wrote to me:

We praise the Lord for his grace for us. As you know most of our kids are from where there is no car, phone, TV, etc.. At all orphanages, the care takers do not or cannot afford to send or bring kids outside of the campus, like going to the zoo, park, or for sightseeing. It is very expensive for us. They really love to go out of the campus!

We brought some of our older kids to the airport and they just love it!!! They are sooo happy! They look around and see people going here and there with luggage. They get to see the planes. They took pictures. We the leaders took an advantage of it to explain them if they study hard in school they can be one of these people traveling or may be the owner or be police officer or pilot! They listen to us very carefully. It seems to see their face seeing something new and should be achieved of.

So the next time you have to fly somewhere, maybe you can remember the children of Grace, and gain a fresh appreciation for the opportunities so many of us take for granted.

On behalf of the children,

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Parting Shot

Zion Children’s Home in Kalaymyo, Myanmar, has a few piglets that will soon graduate to being pigs!

Pastor Thang Leo is so proud to have his son, Samuel, back with his family.

Pastor Thang Leo was failing to provide for his family. Living in the remote mountains of Chin State, Myanmar, it’s not uncommon for fathers to struggle at providing the basic necessities of clothing, food and education for their children, and Pastor Thang’s salary just wasn’t enough.

So when a friend who runs an orphanage hundreds miles away in Yangon, Myanmar’s largest city, offered to take one of his children, he felt he had no choice but to send his son Samuel away.

Several years passed. Then one day Pastor Thang heard some good news that might mean that his son could return home to his family. That’s the day, last October, when I met Pastor Thang and offered him a loan of $300 USD to start a small agricultural business so that he could earn more income so that he could provide for his family—and bring his son back home from the orphanage. He heartily agreed!

Now Pastor Thang not only has his son back, but he also has a 10-acre cabbage field!

Because of Pastor Thang’s good reputation in Chin State, he was appointed to be an overseer of 10 other families who took loans from Orphan’s Tear in order to bring their children back home.

Thank you for making a difference and standing with us as we reunite children in orphanages with their families!

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Pastor Thang standing in front of part of his 5,500-pound harvest!

Filed under: Myanmar

A letter from Alina, of New Hope Orphanage in Nepal, to her sponsor!

Keeping sponsors well-informed about their sponsored children has always been my desire. We’ve been limited on how well we could do that in the past, but I’m excited to share a new program that will start soon: Personal mail from your sponsored child!

This year, beginning with orphanages in Moldova, Nepal and Myanmar, we are asking sponsored children to write one letter a year to their sponsor. Sponsors won’t be able to write back to their sponsored child—yet—but this is a small step to keep you better informed!

Such a program will, of course, add administrative expenses for Orphan’s Tear, but we feel that, for you sponsors, improving the connection you have with your child is worth it. We hope you do too. And we’ll do our best to keep those costs at a minimum.

As one of our first steps, we’ve hired long-term friend and orphanage director, BT John, to gather and translate the letters from Myanmar, where most of the orphans we support live. This income will also help BT support his orphanage through his hard work.

We’ve stepped out on faith by starting a program like this because our General Fund (from which admin expenses come) doesn’t currently have the funds to cover the cost of administrating this program. We believe, however, that the encouragement our sponsors will receive—and the greater connection the children will have with them—is worth it. Our donors have already given sacrificially to sponsor these kids, so we’re not raising the cost of sponsorship. We’re just trusting that the Lord will bless our efforts to bless our donors.

If you are interested in donating to the Orphan’s Tear General Fund to help pay for our administration of programs like this one, please click here.

Sponsors have made a difference in the lives of many orphans, so I’m glad we can return some of that blessing to our sponsors in this new way!

For our donors,

Elisabeth Walter
Director of Orphan’s Tear

Orphan's Tear uses none of the contributions received for fundraising or administrative purposes. 100% of everything we receive from you directly benefits orphans. General gifts to our parent ministry, Heaven's Family, provide the administrative costs of Orphan's Tear.