International Widows' Day

CORE-RELATE! Did you know that... June 23 is - was - actually "International Widows' Day"?
International Widows Day is a United Nations ratified day of action to address the “poverty and injustice faced by millions of widows and their dependents in many countries”. - Cute Calendar

International Widows Day (IWD) is the initiative of the Loomba Foundation and the date June 23rd was to commemorate the date when the mother of Lord Raj Loomba was widowed. The United Nations has recognized and ratified IWD in 2010, five years after it was launched in London. Click here to read more about the Loomba Foundation

Widows are special in God's eyes

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." - James 1:17

My mom is a widow and I consider it as my loving duty to look after her. God's Word is so alive that these days I am also reminded by this commandment: "Honor your father and your mother, as the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live long and that it may go well with you in the land the LORD your God is giving you." (Deutronomy 5:16).

My mom is quite strong (and young-looking!) for her age. She still works as a freelance health counselor and manages her time amongst taking care of my 7 year-old nephew and her business. She is turning 60 next year and if things were up to me, I don't want her to work anymore. This is why it is painful for me, in all honesty, that I am not able to support her as much as I should.

Still, it is reassuring to know that widows and orphans have a special place in God's heart. Consider this:

"Do not take advantage of a widow or an orphan. If you do and they cry out to me, I will certainly hear their cry. My anger will be aroused, and I will kill you with the sword; your wives will become widows and your children fatherless." (Exodus 22:22-24)

Netramani - A Widow's Story, an excerpt from Veil of Tears

It is God's command to take care of widows. If you cannot physically take care of them, at the very least, you must take every opportunity to help them in their plight whenever you can. Through this blog - and your support - you can do something to reach out to widows and alleviate their pain. There is, in fact, a tremendous call to help 40 million widows in South Asia alone today!

Widows in India are ostracized and treated as a curse. They are often discriminated, abandoned, neglected and left to fend for themselves and their children. Most of them are forced to flee to a place called "Island of Widows" in West Bengal for refuge. Sadly, quite a number commit suicide due to hopelessness.

In Nepal, the subsequent earthquakes last April 25 and May 12 has left many women without a husband or without a family altogether. Three of these widows are Bhukima, Drashtaa and Tarana.

Bhukima's husband was a miner. He went as usual to the forest to mine gemstones. The earthquake happened. He never returned.

Tarana and her husband were together when the quake came. Unaware that all his children were already safe outside, he went back inside the house to rescue them. The house collapsed. He died.

The earthquake made both Bhukima and Tarana widows and each of them has five children to feed and take care of.

Before the earthquake, widow Drashtaa lived with her only family - her teenage granddaughter who's 16. The teenager went to the forest to get some firewood. After the earthquake, Drashtaa never saw her granddaughter again.

How can you help?

Take care of the widows within your reach -
Start with the widows in your own family or community. One of the best ways to let a woman feel loved and appreciated is to listen to her. It won't take much to know what makes her happy. Compliment her for how she looks, what she does, what she gives or simply for her presence. Spend time with her. Cook for her. Treat her to a trip to the spa. Ask her nicely if she needs a hand in whatever she's doing. Whatever you do, as long as you do it with a heart that freely gives and genuinely cares, you can never go wrong.

Give financially to causes which support widows -

...for widows everywhere to experience God's love in a personal way.
...that we will do whatever we can to express genuine love and support to the widows among us


Meanwhile, to support Nepal pray for:
  • Comfort and hope for those grieving
  • Protection from disease and danger
  • God’s provision and sustenance for relief teams
  • Many to understand Jesus’ love

To give financially for relief efforts in Nepal and for updates, visit: http://www.gfa.org/earthquake/nepal/.

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