God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

Reflections / Gedanken

17.05.2010

The ash cloud is approaching, but Frankfurt Airport promised to be a good boy and be open until midnight. That should do the trick to bring us out. This morning a talk for 150 students of the Gesamtschule Stromberg and I once again realise how far away the real world is for those kids, or better: how well protected they are not to know the realities of life in all its facets.

Then back to Frankfurt to check in the luggage and go quick to town for a last shopping. A sms telling me, that a friend of mine got a heart attack and is lying in hospital, another phone call from South Africa telling me, that a person I know from Rotary has been found dead floating in his swimming pool with 42 – and some last-minute chaos regarding the Ball of HOPE… I feel it is time to get back home.

Now sitting at the airport and trying to sort out all the emails of the last three days.. there was no time to really read and answer every of those and now it looks like work down a hug pile of emails from around the world.

So what is the result of the trip?

Many talks, new connections and the renewal of old connections with sponsors and donors of HOPE Cape Town. Quite a lot of invitation to give talks or preach – a donation from the Kolping family Muenster – Sarmsheim, a couple of new HOPE Cape Town fans and supporters – re-connecting with those who are faithful sponsors the whole years and finally a big step regarding our new project for HIV positive priests and religious.

This trip was full of wonderful experience, little sleep, some flu in between but when Fr. Wim and I will write our final report and outline future steps, I am sure that it is to the benefit of HOPE Cape Town, Justice & Peace Cape Town and the joined venture we persue. Thanks to all and everybody who made this trip worth the efforts – thanks for all cooperation in Wolfsburg, Rome, Munich and Muenster-Sarmsheim as well as Stromberg.

And of course I am always grateful that LH grants me the pleasure of flying with them.. those encounters at the counters have been a real inspiration – in the best and in the worst way possible.. alternating…  as usual. 🙂

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

16.05.2010 Muc-FRA-Muenster-Sarmsheim

In the morning a breakfast meeting with two representatives of the “Aktionsbuendnis AIDS” before starting to pack up and leave for the airport. The machine is completely overbooked, the staff at the boarding area has still to learn that LH is a SERVICE orientated business and that the customer pays for his flight and is not the one to be grateful to be chosen to fly with Lufthansa. It is sometimes amazing for me to see and experience the different standards of service deliver of Lufthansa.

Well, the machine is packed, even the jump-sits are used for passengers – we are late,  but why apologise for the mess….LH at its best again….

In Frankfurt another experience of lack of service oriented business behaviour. It seems that the booking of the car with GPS was just a request – so no car with GPS available. The lady from AVIS is not very helpful – the meaning of the word “service” is completely strange to her… maybe unheard?

Europcar is finally helping out – and we rush to Bingen and then to Muenster – Sarmsheim for the information evening about HOPE Cape Town. It is good to see all the familiar faces and to speak with those whose pastoral care was close to my heart more than 20 years ago.. it feels like coming home after all these years.

It is 11pm until back to the hotel where a bed is waiting – tomorrow an early school appointment is waiting for us.

Filed under: General, HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, Networking, Politics and Society, Society and living environment, Uncategorized, , , , , , , ,

09.05.2010 On the way…

Cape Town – Johannesburg – Frankfurt – Hannover… the first leg of the trip, Fr. Wim Lindeque of Manneberg and I are flying to meet a lot of interesting people and to hopefully push forward our common agenda regarding the pastoral work for HIV positive priests and religious. While the Southern African Catholic Bishops Conference considers our proposal, we are heading also to Rome to introduce our concept to two papal councils. After that to Munich where I am invited to join a podium about South African children and HIV. Lots of talks with politicians and church people are also on the agenda. Finally to Muenster Sarmsheim to join for a fundraising evening in lieu of HOPE Cape Town and the next day discussion with some students of a local school.

But first to Hannover and Wolfsburg to meet “brother” Joachim and Sandra and their team to prepare for some challenging events next year.

Filed under: HIV and AIDS, HOPE Cape Town Association & Trust, Medical and Research, Networking, Politics and Society, Uncategorized, , , , , , , , ,

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