Mamathe Children’s Home has been providing love and care to orphans in India since 2004—orphans like Ishka, who has lived there since her mom dropped her off at age two. Even though she is now thirteen, she still struggles with feelings of abandonment. She says, “The hardest part of being an orphan is trying to remember how everything happened… struggling to remember people and incidents, figuring out what was real or my imagination. I was too young. I sit up at night sometimes trying to put the pieces together, but it’s like putting together a puzzle without the picture on the box.”
Children who grow up in a context of poverty, disease, genocide, or civil conflict can experience emotional trauma long after the hardship. Such grief exposes a deeper need for Christ’s comfort and hope, as well as practical life skills to flourish in the face of challenging circumstances.
Two resources, Life on Life curriculum and The Action Bible, work together to meet the unique needs of orphans like Ishka. The lessons combine spiritual formation, character development, and life skills to strengthen and comfort the whole child. And The Action Bible makes the Word come alive in a way that orphans can immediately relate to.
Ishka’s breakthrough came when the children gathered to read The Action Bible. She saw herself in the vibrant illustrations of Jesus and Zacchaeus, and understood that Jesus loved and reached out to her in the same way. Ishka realized she was not abandoned: “Jesus sees what is inside each and every person, even when no one else can.”
That day, Ishka opened up to the love of her heavenly Father, and began to warm up to the love of Christian caretakers in the orphanage. The caretakers say that Ishka has completely changed: Instead of feeling bitterness and confusion as she reflects on her experiences, she shines with the confidence of knowing she is a beloved child of Christ.