Stories of Joy - No. 2 - Nadvirna orphanage — young teenager helped

In Ukraine and Canada

A young teenager Marianne stood at the gate and gazed unbelievably at the happy group of children playing in the courtyard of this big house in Nadvirna, where, her parents had told her, orphans lived. There was a strange feeling in her heart for these children who had no parents; perhaps because both of hers were alcoholic, and poor. All three slept on the street; occasionally, when a neighbour needed extra work hands, he would also offer a few amenities. Unfortunately, everyone was still poor, following the recent communist era.

Noticing this scene, a kind and gentle Sister Servant, a volunteer at the orphanage, walked to the gate and invited the girl in. A new life would begin for her! She came often, ate and played with the children. She learned to read and write and gradually sat in on the regular classes taught there. After completing high school, she enrolled in a 2-year sewing course at a Salesian residential trade school, designing and sewing herself a lovely outfit for her graduating assignment.

Even though she lacked residency, she was hired by a factory in a nearby city, only to be later exploited, requiring her to work 10 hours daily, including many Sundays, and paid irregularly with 60% often kept back. When her health began to deteriorate, she went back to the Sisters in Nadvirna for help. Through several new donors, they were able to purchase a multi-functional sewing machine for her, and, her sewing diploma in hand, she has now confidently embarked on new projects in her beloved career. Her tuition and residence expenses at the Salesian school were all paid by generous Winnipeg donors, who were approached by a Canadian Sister Servant. To show her gratitude, Marianne sent them a beautiful beaded Icon which she herself embroidered.

Praise the Lord, who cares for the widowed and the orphan!

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