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Helping children in crisis

A Christian Science perspective on daily life.

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In an occasional series that begins today, this newspaper will look at two South African families of modest means but extraordinary heart. The members of these families have done what they could to help solve one of the often overlooked problems of AIDS in Africa by adopting children orphaned by this scourge.

Governmental programs, including those of the United States and other nations in the West, often focus nearly exclusively on anti-retroviral drugs, and then to a much lesser degree, on awareness and prevention programs. But almost nothing is done to help the millions of children left hopeless and homeless. These South African families, which the Monitor will revisit from time to time, have set an example for the world.

The unselfish hope shown in these families resonates and inspires. The tragedy of the millions of abandoned children is of a scope unparalleled in world history, and it seems that our decency as human beings demands some kind of response.

For many years, I have found that an openhearted willingness to hear God's word in my heart and mind is always the first step. This prayer to learn and do God's will replaces our opinions, challenges our biases, and compels us to loosen our strongly held convictions.

Jesus might have been indicating this when he told his friends, "I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me" (John 5:30).

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