What's it all about?

40 nights for the orphans of India. My 'Lent in a Tent' is about raising hugely needed funds for 'Shining Faces in India' orphanage in Salem, Tamil Nadhu, by sleeping ouside the Chaplaincy at King's Bruton for 40 nights. My target is at least £10,000 - which amazingly is only enough to feed the hundreds of children there for about two months.

I hope that many might be inspired to trade 40 pounds for my 40 nights. Actually, in the back of my mind I'm convinced that we could smash through the target and go much much further ... I wonder.

Thursday, 28 February 2013

Collective anonymity ... night 23/40

'Namelessness' is how it's defined. Anonymity. 'The quality or state of being unknown or unacknowledged.' Anon.

It's a name that many have adopted for themselves as they've visited my electronic home to make a donation to the children. There'll be many reasons for the adoption, and many reasons for not, but in a very real way every flesh and blood character behind every name will share a new anonymity as the funds so generously given are fired to India in a few weeks time.

I've talked already about our own blindness to the plight of the countless invisible ones of the world, as if their need-scarred beauty in some way inoculates our vision ...

But from their end, the children at the orphanage have no way of seeing the faces and lives of the 120 who currently stand side by side on the team of 'Lent in a Tent' donors and from whom the £10,500 now raised has flowed.

To the children there's a collective anonymity about us. Every generous heart is an anonymous heart, unless more happens to create a broader crossing of lives. But there's treasure in the anonymity. I've heard them speak of it ... marvel at it ... and pray thanks for it.

The point is, for the children our gift arrives as nothing other than simple committed love - 'agape' love as the Bible calls it. No opportunity for reward; no chance of thanks; no favouring of the friend - just giving to those in need whoever they may be.

And so all you generous hearts are anonymous to the children who pray thanks for you. Anonymous by name ... but known as 'givers' ... to them you're synonymous with the gift you've given. It's somehow best that way; the 'anon' allowing them to 'move on'.

For them, their lives are enriched through this plan that has brought us all together for a time. We may be anonymous to them but their lives are bound together in new-family-love and joy in the dream come true of new friendship ...

'Dream come true' has relevance here in Somerset too. Our smashing of the ten thousand target is cause for unfettered gratitude, but also for redoubled efforts for the second half in the tent. Striking target does no mean striking tent!

We keep going, as I wrote last night, and who knows where this bunch of anonymous-to-the-orphans good hearts may take our total? If you'd like to ...

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