God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

pensées of a Catholic priest

Preparing for overseas

It’s the time of the year again when a longer overseas stay is due and major fundraiser for HOPE Cape Town will be on the program. With all the connectivity via social media, twitter, FB, Skype and other tools there is only one way to really catch up and stay deeply connected: the personal encounter with the people supporting the cause you rally for.
The Gala in Dresden will give the opportunity to meet with lots of people who have not only come and visited during the year, but also being faithful since more than a decade in supporting and advertising our work in and around Cape Town. It is indeed with joy and anticipation to be in the city with heart and to catch up with those I know personally but also to make new friends and partners for HOPE Cape Town. The 13th Hope Gala will be at the last weekend of October and if you don’t have a ticket yet, please let us meet at this marvelous charity event.
Berlin is be next – the “Festliche Aidsgala der Deutschen Aidsstiftung” – a mega event in the capital of Germany and we are so grateful for the support coming from this great evening. But obviously it is not only jumping from festive event to festive event – from presenting to a Rotary Club in Berlin to speaking in front of an audience connected to the OneWorld Shop in Bitburg; visiting a jewellery studio in Dresden supporting HOPE Cape Town with a fine idea or other of the many one to one meetings, exchanges and encounters: it is always about touching hearts and minds and making sure the connection is more than “giving away some money”.

This year, my trip in October will be complemented with a stay in Dallas / Texas where we work hard to set up HOPE Cape Town USA as an instrument of connecting projects and facilitating encounters and exchange also for students in the social field. It is an uphill battle in the times of a deeply divided nation – but we hope that the World Aids Day 2018 will bring all the collaborators together around one table and we will make one major step forward to achieve meaningful cooperation but also strengthen the fundraising efforts in the USA.  All this obviously can’t be done by one person – so I am very grateful to all who are part of this adventure, Stacy, Auntjuan, Shirley and Joe – all directors of the US entity and willing to go the extra mile to make it happen. I am especially excited to see Bryans House and the Cathedral of HOPE in Dallas being willing to venture with us.

Connecting the work over 3 continents and making sure that we not only know about each other , but feel each other and being able to encounter each other: this is more than just working in the fields of HIV, Aids, TB, ECD and social services – it is a service to bringing the world together and to contribute in a small but important way to understanding, peace and well-being of those living in the global village. In a world so divided as it is in the moment, I believe that we all have a role to play as individuals, but also NGO’s to foster those human relationships and giving birth to more love, more faith and more hope in the best sense of the word. The HOPE Cape Town family is definitely on board to do so…

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HIV, AIDS and HOPE – thoughts of a Catholic priest

Being a Roman - Catholic priest and working in the fields of HIV and AIDS in Africa is often a challenge. Living in Africa has also its challenges. On the other hand I feel very much blessed having all the three. So you will find stories and reflections about my work, about the church, South Africa and Africa and essential information and developments in the field of HIV and AIDS. And in between personal stories and thoughts. You are most welcome to leave a comment or to get in touch with me - blogs - "thinking loud" so to speak is a ways of communication and exchange of ideas.

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