GREENVILLE, S.C. — St. Anthony of Padua Church and School here sent five volunteers to a Franciscan orphanage in Dakar, Senegal, Africa, recently, bringing car seats, antibiotics and clothing to more than 60 babies.
Pastor Patrick Tuttle, OFM, said: “Through one of our partners in ministry, Marisa Ramos, a flight attendant with Delta, who heard about the orphanage, we were able to connect with the five Franciscan sisters working there.”
Baby Care and Teen Ministry
“The sisters rally teenage girls from the rural areas of Dakar to serve the abandoned babies, whose parents can’t care for them because of malnutrition, lack of economic resources and homelessness,” said Patrick. “Our team shared baby-care in the day and teen ministry to the young girls in the evenings.”
Before traveling, the St. Anthony volunteers took a crash-course in French, the language of Dakar, and got the necessary vaccinations, according to Patrick. They spent nine days with the sisters, teens and babies. Patrick said that the orphanage will welcome 40 more babies in the next month.
Church Hosts Zambian Missionary
In related news, St. Anthony welcomed Fr. Stephen Hoyt, OFM, Cap., a missionary from Africa, recently to preach and gain support for his ministry in Zambia.
“Fr. Stephen left us dumbfounded by the level of poverty and lack of basic resources in Zambia,” said Patrick. “We experienced language, music and classes on the culture and history of Zambia, held in the school for a week. We sent Fr. Steve back to Zambia with full pockets and a heart confident in our prayers.”
These events served to enhance Greenville’s commemoration of Black History Month, Patrick said.