God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

pensées of a Catholic priest

Thoughts before a trip…

The evening before my first major trip this year – and as always going through the program I am tempted to anticipate how things will work out – and questions popping up like “whom will you meet on this journey?” and “will there be that kind of connection needed to really encounter each other?”.

The first part will bring me hopefully without delay from Cape Town via Munich and Frankfurt to Bremen, a city I have never visited before. Last year march a delegation from the Federal State of Bremen visited South Africa and Cape Town. Having been able to introduce most of the more than 70 wo-men strong delegation to Blikkiesdorp and HOPE Cape Town I am now invited to learn about this Federal State. Meetings with politicians, clergy, students, refugees, press and social worker / activists are part of the program. I am indeed looking forward not only to meet those introduced to me in Cape Town but also lots of new faces for an exchange on different topics ranging from politics to economics, from trauma to HIV counseling and all in between. Not to forget a bit of culture to understand the great history of this important city.

Via Frankfurt I will then continue my travel to Dallas where I not only hope to meet with some Directors of HOPE Cape Town USA but also able to engage with the impressive Cathedral of Hope, a congregation which has so much to offer and is also willing to engage with the South African HOPE Cape Town organization. Brian’s House, our second partner is definitely on the lists of visits as other organizations. Not to forget the participation in the Dallas South Aids Walk and the baptism of the youngest member of the HOPE family – the son of Stacie and Josh. It will be a real honor to christian the young man. The stay would not be complete without meeting Rev Ted coming all the way from New Mexico – lots of good advice is on the way.

A drive to Houston will complement impressions I gather every time I visit Texas learning more of the spirit of the people living here.  Then flying off to Puerto de Vallarta, where my duties as the chaplain to see for the MS Amadea during the last days of lent and the Holy week commences. Jamaica, Panama, Mexico are some of the stop-overs and finally end April going in Miami from board to catch a flight from Fort Lauderdale via Washington, Frankfurt and Johannesburg back to Cape Town.

What will I bring home from all this travel? Lots to tell I guess, tons of new experiences and certainly more people to feel connected with. Hopefully also some more people interested to join the HOPE family. Whatever it will be – there is always a change, a growth connected to travel – there is always a broader view on the world and its possibilities and challenges achieved. All these can be a blessing and a curse when you come home where life is so limited to a certain frame of customs, experience and expectations. Traveling the world can make a person sometimes very lonely but traveling the world with a mission will always counter this and make sure that the balance is right.

And there is more: Traveling and meeting at first complete strangers shows also how much more talking is needed to understand the realities behind the words used to communicate with each other. Using the same language does not mean to understand each other, describing situations does not mean to get the point across – upbringing, culture, politics and socialization determine the use of language and one quick realizes that the “global village” needs quite some push to become reality in the madness of the world today.

Filed under: chaplain, chaplain to sea, General, HIV and AIDS, HOPE Cape Town Association, HOPE Cape Town USA, Networking, Politics and Society, Reflection, Religion and Ethics, Society and living environment, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , , , , ,

Preparing for Europe

south africa

south africa (Photo credit: rafiq s)

 

 

As always this time of the year I am preparing to leave Cape Town and fly to Germany for an extended period of time. For four weeks I will travel to and between Munich, Frankfurt, Dresden, Berlin, Trier, but also Vienna and London and other cities. It is a very hectic schedule, but I try to bundle as much as possible into my agenda to make the long flight worthwhile and to use the time as efficient as possible. The HOPE Gala in Dresden will be the highlight of the trip, followed by the Festive AIDS Gala in Berlin. But besides all glamor the trip is about HOPE Cape Town and about people. It is also about being an ambassador for the situation in South Africa. We are going through a tough time here in country – mine strikes, burning trucks, strikers killing people who want to work; all the news about violence and intimidation is surely not good news and paints a rather grim picture of South African society. In fights within the ANC, the ruling party, but also corruption, wildcat strikes, violence, high unemployment and the lack of political leadership brings the country to the brink of chaos and unlawfulness. It feels a bit like the wild west when watching the news. But as always there are also rays of hope and a great potential. All this makes it even more important that the relationship between South Africa and European countries is strong and based on honest and correct information, which in return fosters the means to support the new South Africa in a beneficial way. I hope that my travel contributes not only to the well-being to HOPE Cape Town Association& Trust but also gives a bit towards a better future for this beloved country.

 

 

Filed under: General, HOPE Cape Town Association, HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, HOPE Cape Town Trust, Networking, Politics and Society, Reflection, , , , , , , , , ,

Meetings and preparations… – HOPE Cape Town in action…

Friday, 12. August – Full board of trustee meeting in the afternoon. The process of restructuring of HOPE Cape Town is continuing. Now, 5 years into the existence of the HOPE Cape Town Trust, the envisaged future which led to the founding of the trust kicks finally in. The trust is assuming more and more the function it was thought for: looking after the association’s money and to ensure the financial stability and future of HOPE Cape Town Association. It is great to see that what you have dreamt of years ago suddenly comes into reality. So decisions have to be made to make the synchronise trust and association in a way beneficial for the work and people we care for. Exciting times but with two additional trustees duly elected and an expansion of the advisory board the work will bear the necessary fruits.
This week the board of the association is meeting, time is running for the welcome of the first ever director for HOPE Cape Town. This year, the 10th anniversary of the association sees hard work to put into place everything for the well-being of the organisation for the next years to come. It shows also how dedicated the board members are trying to achieve the best possible for the future of our work.

In October, the custom Germany trip is due again and preparations are also on the way for talks, encounters, workshops and all the rest ahead. Frankfurt, Munich, Aachen, Trier, Berlin, Dresden, Koblenz and maybe Hamburg are in the moment on the map, logistic is sometimes difficult, but at the end it will all come together to promote HOPE Cape Town again in Germany.

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

11.11.2010 working group on ethics and hiv

I am invited to the theological working group on ethics and HIV in Frankfurt, associated to the “Aktionsbuendnis AIDS” in Germany. It is a lively discussion about what we have to do and how to create synergies and specially the topic how we deal within the church with employees who are HIV  positive is coming up again and again. It seems to me that all churches are not very open on this issue. Maybe the sensitivity of the topic is to frightening for the superiors. Not sure about it, but I am sure that we have to tackle it before it hits us. An interesting afternoon where North and South are meeting in a lively debate.

Filed under: HIV and AIDS, Networking, Reflection, , , , , , , ,

26.07.2010 Frankfurt Airport

Arriving at Frankfurt airport. A long and intensive weekend draws to an end. Udo Lindenberg and the Panic Orchestra in Tuebingen – an experience on its own – a different world for a priest, but I learned to know great people. Amongst others Claudius from the group “Karat”, Marit und Arno and many more… Also being on stage to launch the fundraising drive together with Udo is special – one can only imagine the kick, a rock star gets on stage in front of thousands of screaming and waving fans. Well, one would wish that reaction after a sermon…hehehehe 🙂

Lots of talks, planing and a night at home with Viola & Hermjo; it is good to have friends to relax with, discuss pressing issues and also get advice and guidance and share experience without having to watch every word and phrase. Protected areas and I really cherish this moments to let one’s mind speak – the best way to develop ideas to get things moving.

Later the day still meetings, amongst others with a new sponsor and I hope for a good chat and a productive meeting. Again it is amazing to see how many people what to give a hand to assist HOPE Cape Town in its daily work with those infected and affected by HIV and AIDS.

All in all 10 intensive days with lots of new information, exchange of ideas – Vienna, Tuebingen, Frankfurt; I fly back with lots of new ideas and concepts, specially also to foster the HOPE Cape Town Trust and to assist in making the work of HOPE Cape Town stronger in the months and years to come.

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

14th HOPE Gala Dresden

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

Ball of HOPE 2020

Join us @ The Westin in Cape TownMay 23rd, 2020
10 months to go.
Follow God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE on WordPress.com

Blog Categories

Block Entries Calender

July 2019
S M T W T F S
« Jun    
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031  

Stefan Hippler Twitter Account

HOPE Cape Town Twitter Account

You can share this blog in many ways..

Bookmark and Share

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 3,026 other followers

Translation – Deutsch? Française? Espanol? …

The translation button is located on each single blog page, Copy the text, click the button and paste it for instant translation:
Website Translation Widget

or for the translation of the front page:

* Click for Translation

Copyright

© Rev Fr Stefan Hippler and HIV, AIDS and HOPE.
Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Rev Fr Stefan Hippler and HIV, AIDS and HOPE with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

This not withstanding the following applies:
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

%d bloggers like this: