Bishop Dr. Andrew Francis and the children of Lahore - We would like to inform you on these pages about our project, which is a project of the providence of God.
When we say ... the providence of God, we are very well aware that we are only weak creatures who are only doing their duty. In the spirit of the Gospel, we try to follow the call of God to say with Mary, the mother of Jesus, "Be it done to me according to your word !" and further, "It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you and called you to be my disciples !" This is how we understand our service and we want to follow the Lord Jesus Christ with our actions in this aforementioned basic principle, who also says: "Whatever you did to one of these little ones, you did to Me !"
This Webside is dedecated to Bishop Dr. Andrew Francis (* 29. Nov. 1946 Adah, Pakistan; † 6. June 2017) Founder of Anthony's Foundation - Antoniushilfe. In gratitude to his work on earth, we continue this help for the poor, conscious of his spiritual heritage and his work from heaven.
Corona has changed everything ! Maybe you have heard this statement before or had to make this experience yourself. Mostly not for the better but in general the situation of most people has worsened in our days. Yes, many of us may be experiencing serious changes in their life circumstances, through loss of work, home, illness or the death of people who were previously at their side. There are certainly many things that can affect our lives and we must try to live with them. However, we should know: We are not alone ! Especially now, when we and many other people are suffering under the present circumstances, we should not forget that there is one who is not indifferent to us and who loves us, especially when we experience situations like the present one.
Yes, many people have already made this experience, prayer changes not only situations but also ourselves. Have you ever had this experience ? No, then I would like to tell you here the story of the Antony's Help or as it is called in the origin in English: Antony's Foundation:
Anthony's Foundation, how it all began
Astonished I look at my cell phone, a call from Anthony? Up to now we had almost exclusively written contact. After all, Anthony lives 7500 km away from here. "Hello Sir, how are you? (Hello sir, how are you?) it sounds from my cell phone via WhatsApp. "How are you?" I reply, Anthony: "Sir, I'm not well, it's pure horror here, they lock us up, I haven't come out of my room for 6 weeks. Soldiers everywhere, police, all the stores are closed only the pharmacies are still open. Only every two weeks the market is open to buy food.
...Sir, can you help me, the children have nothing to eat?"
The university is also closed, I have no way to continue my studies at the moment, I am desperate! Right in my neighborhood people have Corona, sir, what can I do? I'm afraid of catching it sir, can you help me, the children have nothing to eat?"
Anthony makes a completely desperate impression on me and I try to calm him down, which I succeed in doing after a few encouraging words.
Who is Anthony
Anthony Javed, is a law student, 26 years old, from Lahore in Pakistan. We got to know each other through Bishop Andrew Francis, whom I had the pleasure of meeting through a long-time friend and priest I knew, Father Burkhard Nogga, back in the 90s. Bishop Andrew Francis was for many years the bishop to whom Father Burkhard Nogga was subordinate and with whom we had a deep friendship. Unfortunately, Bishop Andrew Francis died, as a result of a serious car accident, after many years of suffering.
Bishop Andrew Francis
Anthony also knew Bishop Andrew Francis very well, better said, he loved him like his own father and in a way he did for him, because the bishop said to him: "Your task is to help the children of the street, for this you have to train as a lawyer and study law ! This is a hard path, but it is your vocation and you will be able to help the children of the street in the best way."
And so it happened. At the behest of the bishop, Anthony studied law and in this he recognized his path. With the help of the bishop, he was able to finance his very expensive studies. In addition, Anthony took great care of the street children in Lahore, whom Anthony had taken to his heart since his earliest youth. The initiative of the bishop, who had founded this project "Anthony's Foundation" in 2016, touched Anthony Javed in the heart and thanks to his spiritual teacher of the bishop, Anthony recognized in the children, his vocation, because many of these children live completely on their own on the streets of Lahore. Most of these children are orphans and there is no one who feels responsible for them. So they quickly get caught up in the maelstrom of crime and drugs, and quite a few starve to death or die of disease.
Anthony's Foundation - founded shortly before his death
Anthony: "This project was started in 2016 by Bishop Dr. Bishop Andrew Francis. I was part of this project. But after the death of the bishop, on June 6, 2017, I did not stop this project. I started collecting money for my children at that time. At that time I had 8 children, but now I have 45 children. I give them free food, free schooling, books, clothes, and I teach them Bible study."
Anthony sees the bishop's mission, a mission for his life, to help these children, be it in matters of daily living, as well as medical care, and last but not least, legal representation. A mammoth task for a law student !
Corona changed everything
But Anthony is a person who does not give up easily, and even after the death of the bishop, he saw his task very clearly and continued to take care of the street children of Lahore. But now the situation that could not be foreseen by anyone,- Corona.
Corona questioned everything, especially for the poorest of the poor and this includes Anthony's children. He described to me the situation of the children as dramatic, even desperate, as most in Pakistan have also fallen into economic hardship due to the Corona crisis. So he asked me for my initiative in his need or the need of the children.
The Bishop, a man of God and a friend of the people
Anthony: "Sir, the children are in such great need as I have never seen before, because there is no one to take care of them, everyone is afraid of infection, the children have no food no protection from the virus, we are all desperate, please help us!"
As I also had the privilege to know Bishop Andrew, we understood this situation as a wake-up call from heaven, yes, one could also say, as an initiative of the Bishop from heaven, who had united us through the experience of God's love when he was still among us. So we saw ourselves committed to this call and according to the initiative of love for the poor that Bishop Andr ew taught us, we also want to serve the poor and alleviate their suffering in such a way that it becomes bearable for them, even more, so that they can live a life worthy of a human being, as God wants it.
"Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren....
you did it to Me." Remembering this word of Jesus, we want to serve those who are poor and hungry, not only in material things, but we want to bring you this very message of God's love that has touched us and continues to touch us, because we know that this is how we can fulfill God's love. So we invite you, through your support, to participate in this love of God, also knowing that what we are willing to give will also be given to us, this is what I call a "principle of God's love". We reap what we sow, not that we expect this, but we know God is good and just, he also sees the little that we do.
Dobel the 13.06.2020 (Memorial Day of St. Anthony of Padua)
In the following you will find short video documentations of our work on site (currently in progress! )