The new parish coordinators at St. Francis de Sales and St. John the Apostle recently teamed up to help this mom. Below is just a small snapshot from one of the coordinators of all that they’ve done so far…
As our GPA Mom was about to give birth, Gabriel Project members took shifts staying with her at the hospital all day and late into the night, assisting in any way we could. This included being present to help translate during the labor and delivery, staying with her so her husband could go home to pick up some things and helping her to become comfortable feeding the baby.
She was so appreciative of everyone’s efforts on her family’s part. I came bearing gifts for her and baby, including a beautiful blanket made by the hands of our prayer shawl ministry at St. John, $100 worth of Giant gift cards collected by St. Francis parishioners, a bear gifted by my daughter Isabel for the baby, and a bouquet of mums in her favorite color courtesy of Sacred Heart Homeschoolers. In addition, I let her know that many, many people were praying for her and her family.
The GPA Mom talked earnestly to me about feeling loved by our community. She had been having a sense of anxiety as she prepared to have this baby alone, in a faraway country, without a friend or family nearby. Although her husband is with her, he works 6 days a week often up to 10 hours a day. We helped give her a sense of family and friends through our community of Christians, and her fears were shed one by one.
She came last fall to the U.S. from Vietnam to try to establish a better life for her family. She comes from an impoverished countryside in Vietnam, and has seen her parents and siblings suffer through poverty. Her father is a rice field farmer in poor health; her mother is a fruit vendor. She took it upon herself to learn English, in some degree, before coming here. She is more than willing to work hard, continue to learn English, and apply herself to some position to better her family.
She told me yesterday that she is learning a lesson from us. She sees wonderful mothers all around her trying to teach her the gentle approach to motherhood. She quietly observes and patiently listens. If she is open to learn from any of us, it is the Holy Spirit working in her heart.
I am sharing all this with you to let you know what an amazing testimony the Gabriel Project can be to our Church, as we strive to impart Christ’s love by caring for innocent babes and their mothers. I thank everyone that helped out. It was truly needed and appreciated.