VISIT TO NAIROBI-KENYA

Meeting Point International is fully committed towards enhancing the value of the person, in order to promote his/her human growth, help him/her discover the meaning of life and make a true experience of freedom. Any person sincerely true to him/herself, wherever he/she may live, perceives a desire of happiness that is never exhausted; the human heart asks for something else, something that goes beyond and over him/her. When the person experiences such level of awareness in his/her relationship with everything, with the whole reality, he/she starts knowing something about mystery. Such a human position puts the person in action; he/she is no longer a surrender or passively waiting for events, rather he/she becomes an actor of development for him/herself, his/her family, community and country. Through an organized and effective response to the daily needs of the people we encounter, our development cooperation work is also aimed at raising the essential questions on the meaning and sense of life. The continuous educative possibly for self discovery through many activity where everyone can live a comparison and consciousness of themselves, this is done through tours in the hills, touring towns, valleys lakes and rivers, game parks , seminars guide films, songs and guided reading books. This is also done for our patients to rediscover the meaning and the beauty of things. This is always done with the guidance of Rose Busingye and friends of Meeting Point International.

Women and men of Meeting Point International from Kireka and Naguru, visited Nairobi-Kenya on 11-13 September 2015. This tour comprised of a cache of psychosocial activities including singing, drama, sharing of experiences between the women of Meeting Point International, visit to Nairobi city, visit to the cathedral, visit to Mazuri Market where many of African crafts are displaced, interactive sessions etc. during the activities the women and men interacted freely and this created a stronger bond with in themselves. This kind of bond attracted so many other people in Kenya to come and listen to how the women have really become free, this is portrayed in the song ‘I am now free’ composed and sung by the women of Meeting Point International. This is what attracts people to live like them for them, they are free indeed, no fear of any difficulties in front of them. The women had a chance to interact with Rose Busingye on the theme of ‘understanding the importance of our life’. ‘There is something greater inside yourself, if I look at you and see the way you present yourself, the way you dress, even the way you look, this means that I will reduce you to all that, it is common we start from the appearance of the person not the real person. We do not treat a piece of the person, we treat the whole person but if you understand that you have a value, you treat everyone with value. You see if somebody decides to spend money on you, it means you have a value and if everyone understands this, you will conquer the whole world and if you go deep and understand the value of your life, you treat everything with value. We cannot be determined by the difficulties we pass through because they come and go but life remains. We need to live a life with simplicity, those difficulties will pass. Let difficulties not make us unstable but if you know I have a value and when you take yourself that, I am not this difficulty, my life has a meaning’

Sharing experience

The Women and Men of Meeting Point International had the opportunity to share their life experiences about the discovery of the value and dignity, a simple encounter and events that resulted into appreciations of things surrounding them and giving thanks to even difficult situations that made it possible to realize the meaning of everything in front them.

Adong Ketty gave her experience on how she survived the rebels who had killed her brother. She worked with the rebels and they did each kind of bad things to her to the point of even getting affected and infested with the HIV/AIDS virus. She had lost hope in her life but the encounter with Rose Busingye changed her story, she could not imagine someone she did not know could take care of her. This Gaze has changed everything that surround her and because of the love, belonging, she is now free and she appreciates everything in front of her.

Teddy Bongomin, a field social worker and a ‘mother’ for the women gave an experience of how hard it was after losing her husband, everybody neglected her even the very friends, relatives she thought would support her in this difficult situation turned her down. It was a hard situation indeed to face yet she has a burden of her children and five more not related to her that she has to take care of. But because she has discovered herself and understands the value of her life, she treats every one with value and besides all the difficulties she passes through, life remains.

There are so many other mothers who also shared their personal experiences of self discovery and dignity, all of them passionately talked about times of difficulties in their lives and their families. They confirm that a person who discovers his value discovers beauty of life and lives in freedom and happiness this person is not afraid of anything. The mothers and the youth were moved by the experiences of their colleagues, Rose Busingye did the recap of the sessions explaining into details what this “value” means, she said everything that is done has this value inside, and nothing is disconnected from this “value”.

 

The tour to the Nairobi city

This is a time when everyone was waiting for, when the women were asked whether to take a tour in the park and visiting the Nairobi-town, it was a Yes to Nairobi town where everyone was longing to see the beauty in the town. With the help of our tour guides, we boarded the buses with smiles all over the faces of the women from Maria Polis place where they were staying up to Nairobi town. It was all over the streets of city to see them overwhelmed and with happiness in the face. They reached at Uhuru Park, located in the middle of the city, walked on the streets, saw the place where Jomo Kenyatta was buried, the parliament, Lunar Park, then to the beautiful cathedral where we entered and looked at the beauty in the church. From there, we moved to the Mazuri market where most of the African crafts are displaced and sold, it was indeed beautiful! We also looked a beautiful lake in the city and tall buildings. We passed through the tunnel and saw good roads, one was surprised about a road with cars passing down, others passing up, which looked so more beautiful. Nairobi now has super highways, bypasses and little avenues that are not only well constructed, but well maintained. Of course, there are still some parts of the city that have a few potholes here and there, but most of it has roads that can match up to international standards. This makes transport within and without the city much less of a nightmare as is with many African nations, or as it used to be in Nairobi itself. After visiting the town, it was time to go and have lunch. After reaching our place, it was dancing, it was not on tiredness, it was not tiredness any more, it was happiness, nobody would think about tiredness.

Why a visit to Nairobi city

Nairobi has amazing weather; towering skyscrapers with mesmerizing lights; beautiful parks that allowed us to have a deep breath with the environment around, Yes, Nairobi is a beautiful city. The ‘beauty of the city’ was on the look of the infrastructures, shopping malls, housing, the people that were around us, parks etc. The city’s parks are places you can go and just breathe for a period of time such as Uhuru Park, Jeevanjee Gardens and many others. The parks are plush and serene part of the city, ingeniously incorporated into the cityscape. Drop into one of these parks for sights of the city’s most peaceful side, where people come to chill, reminisce and relax.

Nairobi has it all. Big office building skyscrapers; multinational companies; small business enterprises; an industrial area that simply won’t stop churning out the necessary goods and high speed internet connection to the rest of the world. If there is ever any place in Kenya where you can be whatever you want to be, that place will be Nairobi. Dreams have come true and fortunes have been made here. All you need is the right mix of intellect, ambition and drive. Nairobi will provide you with the opportunity and the infrastructure to make your dreams come true.

Kenya is generally a nation full of very friendly and neighborly people. In Nairobi, you never know what kind of connections you will make; be it business or social. For that very reason, almost everyone is very friendly towards everyone else. They are ready to smile, ready to assist (mostly with directions) and always up for a party.

Opportunities to observe all the above are important to our viewing experience and have an aesthetic importance, as well as helping especially older people recall previous home environments, maintaining healthy mental activity, promoting awareness of time and reducing boredom. This is crucial because many of our beneficiaries live far away from their homes of origin which they are not able to visit often.

 

Report written by

Mukunda Awaru                         IMG_0199                                                               11th -13th September 2015

Rose’s speech at the 30 years celebration of Avsi in Uganda.

Who is Man?

MPI entered into an adventure with the sick, the poor, the old and the orphans to make them understand they are not defined by the situations they find themselves in!

Together we wanted to discover the meaning of life, suffering and even the meaning of death! MPI works with the people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS and their orphans.

MPI invest on education in all levels and ways as an instrument for self-discovery, the method we wanted to discover is something that goes beyond school itself, discovering the correspondence between the real and our consciousness, discovering unitary hypothesis in the explanation of things.

Why did we start with this method?

I began to live and work when somebody told me “You are mine!” He did not know me; it was evident that I was nothing! But I felt wanted and desired. It was as if his gaze was telling me, I want to stay, you have infinite value!

From this gaze everything was born. In fact, I discovered that I was not defined by my limits and shortcomings! From this gaze I started foreseeing meaning for my life; it was as if light shown on everything. I started discovering the truth of my life, and here started attractiveness, a tenderness for my very life and for the life of the others.

I started living and working when I knew how to respond concretely to the question of whom I am! When the question have precise faces with names, I became free!

Paradoxically I became free through belonging, having a link, when you are free, finally you can stay in front of all the reality without fear, you can  face everything  because you who are! Who is free don’t pretend from others, because he or she has everything!

I felt free and protagonist of the reality because Fr Giussani revealed and educated me who I am, his gaze stablelised the content and the method of my work, to communicate the greatness and the value of the single person, my work is to make clear the coming out of every person value of the person.

That is why in MPI we use so much the symbol of I carras

Sometime ago in Uganda everyone knew he or she belonged to a tribe, a family. According to African tradition, the children, women and men belonged to entire community, the individual grew in a bond having a consistency and a dignity, and everyone knew that his or she is somebody!

Now days frequently families are broken due sickness, war, divorce and other family conflicts, the family bonds has been overstretched to breaking points. HIV/AIDS has also denied Parental love care and guidance, which used to determine our social character in the society. Some end with crippled behavior, low self-esteem, self-pity feeling of rejection and inward hatred.

Men and women grow without defense without points of reference without a value, sadness and solitude as if their existence no meaning they stop to live. What dominates is insecurity and instability in all aspects, incapable of constructing and responsibility and they treat themselves as things as instruments.

One could say that we are living a time where civilization seems to be ending; because civilization only evolves in fact to the degree that the value of every single person, every single “I” is helped to emerge and become clear. We live in an age when this does not happen,

Man does not know who he is, where he comes from and where he is going. He does not know the meaning of the things great and small that happens to him. Confusion and bewilderment prevail due to the lack of clear points of reference, a lack of clear criteria by which to make operative decisions, to assume responsibilities of life.

It’s a world in which the identity of the “I” seems to be daily placed in crisis; an inconsistent I, incapable of creation and responsibility.

Who is man then, how can he be helped to know who he is? Allow me to quote an Italian Poet Leopard’s note book! “Nothing shows more the greatness and the power of human intellect neither the height and the nobility of man, than the power he has of knowing and completely understanding and feeling  strongly his smallness; when considering the plurality of the worlds, he feels himself an infinitesimal part of the globe, feeling it deeply and observing intensely, he confuses  himself with nothingness and almost loses himself in the thought  of immensity of things and finds himself as it were lost in the incomprehensible vastness of existence.

What smallness! Who are am i? What is the nature of a human person?

Lucy, Everyone come to me to see all what happened to me, am like a container full of problems, but who is Lucy! I have become famous because I carry with me strange, strange sickness, strange problems but me who am I? Julius, you look at me as a dead person, am going to live to tell everybody that life have a value even death has a value if not why is it there.

The nature of a human being is a need for a meaning, for the truth.

The need is man’s structure, man’s nature

What am I, coincides with the urgency of a meaning, starting from what touches my flesh, the definition of me.

Icarus, the red pulsating point, the endless desire for happiness a plea for a meaning, for happiness

Francis, with my mother, I felt somebody, but now she is not there, so why should live, it was the only relationship that I felt somebody, now I feel nothing without a value.

The nature of the human being is that bond, the fusion of two lovers, this is where development starts from conception up to old age, even scientific studies have demonstrated that a person deprived of love and belonging causes physical and functional harm, specifically the results can be reduction of the size of the hippocampus  a fundamental cerebral structure that regulates the body’s response to stress and reduction in the numbers of connections among the neurons which impact the evolution of logical thinking and the capacity of reflection, this may cause lasting consequences that may shape ones destiny.

It’s evident that the fundamental element of the development of the person lies in the mutual conjugated belonging of the two factors, man and woman! It’s in this bond that the true belonging reveals itself as freedom, the capacity to adhere till identification and assimilation to what makes us be.

The first aspect of freedom is affirming a bond, otherwise one does not grow, he or she stops assimilating.

Every human being needs a guidance beyond oneself, that is something on which one would really depend on. If not the personality under formation is impaired and confused! If not guided, one day everything will boil down to giving in into reactions or being drugged by external forces.

Jane (welcoming house), fathers are those who put on trousers, without a relationship one ceases to exist, nothing last, Jane was always absent minded, distracted……and many others! And she had abandoned to reaction instead of choice, and one reacts to an impression and becomes a prisoner to it.

Man reveals his true nature in every action, nature thrust a person into precise being, into a perfectly defined positivity, so a person encounters, and compares everything he meets with a precise predefined positivity until his real nature is unfolded.

To educate to this sense of belonging that defines the human person a process is almost necessary, that is to say, education takes place if the awareness of belonging to someone else is transplanted in the adults that educate not through a speech; without that osmotic pressure, speeches create only obstacle in the consciousness of the listener.

MPI avails a relationship where one discovers again his value, he or she discovers that somebody, discovers a consistency, a dignity. Its educative un tiring relationship helping them acknowledge life’s total meaning, continuous provocation to their consciousness so that they can regain that sense of the dependence that was mishandled.

We use everything, music and dances of different cultures, we go together by valleys and hills, lakes and rivers, football teams for women,

So that adults and children can come across the spectacle of the human emotion, a fascinating stimulus to proceed with their implications, even should that person later deny them,

Groups are formed among the women and men, to introduce to the meaning and the sense of things that surround them, and this draws them to a marvelous of eruption of discoveries which becomes a chain of education.

This is to prove that its not enough to make projects, but a presence of a person who loves and allows you to give a true meaning to the standards and indicators, allowing you to go beyond the false opposition between data and the person.

We tried to form simple srt

11/09/2015

INTERVIEW TO TEDDY AND KATTY ABOUT THE MEETING WITH THE POPE

Teddy and Katty are two of the women that are going to Rome on the 7th of March for the Audience with Pope Francis on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the birth of CL and the 10th anniversary of the death of Fr. Luigi Giussani.

We have asked them to tell us why they have decided to go to meet the Pope, what they are looking for by going there and also what kind of sacrifice is for them going to Rome in terms of money and work.

 Teddy: “I want to share with you a bit of my experience. I want to tell you how was my life before I encountered a friend, that is Auntie Rose. She really changed my life and it is still changing. My parents died in 1992 when I was still young, I dropped out of school and the only thought that came to my mind was: ‘maybe if I get married, that will be the beginning of my happiness and I will finally enjoy life’. But even after I got married, life was not as I thought. I still needed something more, there was something lacking in me. There was nothing beautiful. Every day was a new day of sorrow, there was no happiness and yet I thought that someday  I would be totally happy, but it wasn’t so. Not until I encountered Auntie Rose. Every day, after work, she went to community school. After some time I asked to Auntie: but what do you really do in community school? I also want to come and see what you people do there. She said to me: yes, you can come! She had never told me how beautiful it was.

The first time I went, I didn’t understand well, but still I wanted to hear more and more about the work of Father Giussani. He was still alive, he had not yet died. One day I picked the courage and I asked her: how did Father Giussani gather all these information so that he can really talk about people? I thought that he was directly talking about me. How can his speaking correspond also to what I have been throughout in my life? I had no one that showed me the right way to go through my life, not until, slowly by slowly, during the work of community school, I was educated and I became aware of myself, finding who I am.

Once I was attending a community school for youth and auntie Rose asked to us: Who am I? Who is man? From there I understood about the infinite desire of the heart and how the heart of men was created by God. For me, in general, throughout my life and from the time I met the movement, what really touched my life and the way that I live now is that I become aware of myself. My heart is educated, I learn about myself and so I am now free to live a happy life. Now I live knowing that I am a value and I look at everything as a value, I look at all the gifts, the gift of friendship, the gift of the husband that I had (my husband passed away last year). When it was announced the meeting with the Pope in Rome on the 7th of March, I was really touched because I just automatically said: I am going to meet God, because the Pope is God himself and so I am going to meet my Father. The work of community school has taught me a lot, it has changed my life: I look at things in a different way, not as I originally looked at them. With my experience, how my parents passed away, how I was left alone and how I was treated from my in-laws, I almost lost everything, but even in that I still remain happy because I know that all of this has happened for something greater. It is only Him who makes me exist, He is the only one who will continue to make me live, because He is the only one who knows me better than any other person. I am happy because of one thing: the greatest thing that I have in my life and in me is the gift of life and Christ that lives in me. I know that even in sadness He is here with me, accompanying me together with all my friends. First I thought that I was alone but after discovering myself, I was never the same, I have never been alone anymore. Without Christ and without the encounter with Him in my life, I would not be the one that I am. I am going to meet the Pope full of joy, I know that when I will meet him, I will come back different. I am going to be more and more aware of myself, my heart is going to be reawakened.

Finally, I want to say that money is nothing, I borrow them from the saving group. Tomorrow morning I am going to borrow some money to get the Visa and the day after I will proceed to the embassy. But I am not feeling any pain, I am not regretting anything because going to meet the Pope is about me, it is all about my life. I have made many sacrifices but I did them because I saw more value in going to meet the Pope because it concerns me and my life.

I pray the Holy Spirit to touch each and every person in the whole world, so that they can become aware of themselves, of their value and of their dignity. I think that if people could know that they are a value, the world will be at peace until the day in which we will meet our destiny.  Thank you.”

 Katty: “The first time that I have met Rose she smiled at me and she showed me another life. That was the time I realized: ‘maybe I will be ok’. But what did she really do to me? She just asked me: ‘What is your name and where are you from?’ I feared everything because I was having a lot of smell and flies around me, but Auntie Rose and the women showed me that I am important, that I have a value. I have started to join them, to work with them hand to hand and then I also started to go to community school. The first time it was not ok because I didn’t understand well and I came back home and I stayed there for 3 weeks. But my heart was telling me to go back to community school. I went and I put my mind to learn. I learnt that if you want to know and learn something you have to be patient and also that the work of community school is good for me and for my life. Before meeting Rose, I was always thinking to what happened to me in the past, but since I joined community school I can live all my things in the present. My heart kept on moving. When I went for prayers and for Mass I saw people that were taking the body of Christ, so I asked myself: ‘Why can’t I take the body of Christ like them too?  I wanted to be in the number of those who were taking the body of Christ. By the time I joined community school, they showed me that Catholic people welcome people. So I decided to be baptized. Last year on Easter I was baptized with my children and with other 15 people. I was very happy.

One day at Meeting Point in Kireka, Auntie Rose told us about the meeting with the Pope in Rome. Now I can say that money is nothing. When I will meet with the Pope it will be even better than meet my father. I look at the Pope as a big father. I was not expecting Rose to tell us anything that day, but when I heard it, I understood that money is nothing to me. Money is not my life, but the value that I am. Community school makes my heart moving ahead so I go to meet the Pope”.

 

Kampala,

Marta Gulden