Matthew has been in a sentimental mood lately. My guess is because he has been at RVA since second grade, and graduation is in July. So much to my surprise, he put on the newest Neil Diamond CD, Hot August Night/NYC. As we listened to the first song, I started to ponder how impossible it would be to pick his greatest song, or even the best recording of his biggest hits. But while the opening version of Holly Holy might suggest “majestic” or “historic,” I’m leaning to “seminal,” which while I’m not exactly sure what it means, I kind of like the sound of it. During that song, Ben and Katie had the following discussion:
Ben: Katie likes Holly Holy!
Katie: (enraged) I DO NOT!
Ben: You like Holly Holy!!
Katie: So what if I do? You like LOTS of songs that aren’t any good.
JT’s finance Janelle won a full ride at the doctoral program at the University of Virginia to study to be a psychologist. She graduates from Wake Forest in May and will go to Virginia. After a year to finish at Wake, JT will marry her and join her in Virginia. Exciting times!
JT spent his first summer at Wake studying in Paris. His second year at Wake he spent the second semester studying in New Zealand. This summer he has won a grant to study coffee plantations in Hawaii. I went to Northern Illinois University in Dekalb, Illinois, and was so overwhelmed with its beauty that I never ever wanted to leave the campus. That is what I keep telling myself.
We had a student accepted into Stanford, three into Cornell, one into Yale, two into Duke and one into MIT this year. Normally that is reason to rejoice, but several kids haven’t had any doors open for them yet. For my Korean kids, if this door doesn’t open they won’t have many options. It is so hard on kids to see their friends get into colleges and it hasn’t happened for them. Matthew has been accepted to many colleges, but none of the financial aid packages come close to helping him get into college without taking a huge debt load. We need a few miracles.
We had the chance to go to a school with a new computer center, and the computer teacher reported something extraordinary to me. Students were skipping lunch in order to have more time on the computer. For many of these kids, lunch is the only sure meal of the day. The teachers have had to close the center at lunch to make sure they all eat.
A few weeks ago, I was at a school and a mother came up to me and wanted to speak to me. She was so poor, but she had a smile on her face that wouldn’t stop. She told me the sad details of her life, but she stopped and said, “I don’t care. My daughter is learning computer. I tell you, we have hope.”
I saw her daughter, who eats two meals a day if she is really lucky. Her clothes were tattered. But she was so excited about the next computer class she was dancing around the building.
Hope can get you through lots of tough times. If you have hope, you can put up with so much.
There is nothing like the wonder of hope. Thank you for providing it to so many.
P.S. This is our latest video that Matthew put together: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9gPndxlJfNM
If you would like to contribute …
Kenya Kids Can is supported by the prayers and financial contributions of people like you, from all over the world. If you are able, please make a donation today to either the “Peifer School Lunch Program – 000339″ or the “Peifer Computer Center Program – 000336.” Steve and Nancy raise their own funding; to support their family directly, make your contribution to “Peifer, Stephen C and Nancy J – Support 047930001.” Thanks in advance!