God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

pensées of a Catholic priest

16.01.2010 Ode an … BKK :-)

My holidays are coming to an end – and once again I feel sad to leave Thailand – and sometimes I ask myself why I am so fond of this country and especially of Bangkok, the capital.

Maybe because Bangkok is in so many ways a symbol for me: an unbelievable moloch which can swallow you without warning. Bangkok is crazy, mad, silent, noisy, dirty, clean – there is surely no characteristic not found in this city.
Thai smiles – I love them and have learned in many years, that one smile can have so many meanings – what seems to be the same is in reality so divers, so full of different reasons behind one expression. A welcome smile, a loving smile, a killer smile, a sorry smile – it is not easy at first to read it correctly.
Bangkok is for me a city which is always different as it seems, one can never believe, what one sees, because there is always a surprise behind the corner. My Thai friends are incredible loving, chaotic, charming, unorganised, full of surprises as well.
Nothing seems to be impossible in this city – it is the master city of deception, of illusion, of anything you can think about.
It is a marriage between blank modernism and the believes of the ancestors. Worshipping the old deities and the modern times – making the best out of a day, sanook, filing the disaster for tomorrow to enjoy today.

Bangkok is a city to learn about life, about love, about fantasy, about death, about karma, about compassion – you name it – and you will find it.

Is Bangkok perfect? Nope, not at all – and in this perfect imperfection lies the miracle and the fasination of the city of the angel. Maybe that is the real reason for feeling home: city of the angel – I never though about it… :-)))))))

Filed under: General, Reflection, Uncategorized, , , , , ,

06.08.2009 amazing and difficult

Sometimes looking up the lists of sponsors and donors or reading through emails I am amazed to read and sense how much people, whom I  never have seen in person, are close and well connected to my own life and work.  The work in the fields of HIV and AIDS, the somehow upstream battle with being able to hold on your own conviction in your own church, it leaves one often exhausted and down. But then, somehow and from somewhere, an uplifting email arrives, a much needed donation is done, an to me unknown person dedicates times and thoughts to be with me in spirit and thoughts.

For me, this is the most amazing part of working with HOPE Cape Town and advocating a measured and meaningful response to the pandemic. Even if the conflict potential within the church sometimes brings me down, there is always a light coming from somewhere. Be it a person, I am dealing with in my work, be it a totally stranger from the other end of the world.

For me, this is the miracle of life and the most amazing experience I have made in the last years. And the warm feeling it creates is worth all the pain and suffering while trying to develop a way in the minefield of HIV and AIDS and all the moral implications, when some of our church leaders are to afraid to tackle them.
It is so endless difficult to have my voice heard in my own church and to be respected for what I am going through and experiencing while doing this work. It is breathtaking how fast one is corned and in effect put in a corner and labeled and sidelined from individuals within the church, who think that their own limited (office) experience represent the whole world.

But once again reading through the encouraging emails, listening to voices of strangers on the phone just wanting to say their appreciation of what you are doing – they are like angels and they do more for the good course than they can ever imagine.

Filed under: HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, Reflection, , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

14th HOPE Gala Dresden

HOPE Gala Dresden - the event to be in DresdenNovember 16th, 2019
4 months to go.

Ball of HOPE 2020

Join us @ The Westin in Cape TownMay 23rd, 2020
10 months to go.
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