What Happens in One Village Happens in Every Corner of the World
Volume 1, Issue 3 / February 2009
A reflection on one girl’s sad experience in a Burundian village, and lessons for the world
Life does not go as everyone expected, planned, or wished. It comes once in a human’s life and once you lose it, you are finished. The world is full of surprises and wonders shall never end.
Once upon a time, in my village where I came from, there was an orphan girl born to a widow who suddenly died after giving birth to her. She was taken to a foster family by the Catholic priest who was assisting poor people in that village. The foster family was trusted by the priest, but they did not provide the poor girl with good and proper care. Instead, both parents and their children hated her and always beat her without reason.
The girl suffered enough and went through all kinds of pains under this new family roof. She grew up doing all domestic activities in that house. She was all alone and was emotionally affected with much trauma.
The priest who was responsible for assistance was not around because he was assigned overseas, but he did not cease helping her. He normally sent money in order to educate her. Instead of using the money for the right reason, the foster family spent it for their own purposes because the poor girl was not aware of anything.
Whenever visitors came to that house, the girl was instructed what to say to them and how to behave. She was sometimes ordered to pretend that everything was fine in front of visitors.
One day, she narrated her story to a good Samaritan who wanted to help her out of her situation. The Samaritan was a businessman in the village who wanted to take her to the city and send her to school. But the foster family denied this offer because they feared losing the money they collected on the girls’ behalf, and they did not want to relinquish her free labor.
So she was not saved, and grew up miserably in the eyes of those who called themselves Children of God.
People learn from others’ mistakes, and they should love their neighbours as they do themselves, because greed and jealousy will not take us anywhere.
This is not happening only in my village, but also in every corner of this world. Remember that today it is me and tomorrow will be you or somebody else.