There are many places where the curse of existence seems to outweigh the blessing of life. The mining sector of the Democratic Republic of Congo is such a place. I have been in Kolwezi, a mining area in south Katanga Province, DRC, in the past and returned there in August. Knowing what to expect did not soften the reality of the harsh and perilous existence there. In fact, the contrast between what our abundant world promises and the reality of children with no promise seemed more callous than earlier times. I could not escape the question, “How in this world, where death and ruin abound, are we following the biblical mandate to choose life?”
Three Good Shepherd Sisters along with their co-worker staff of about 40 persons answer this question day in and day out with very little drama. In the face of entrenched conditions of poverty and powerlessness, in the face of structural inhumanity, they help children and families to make difficult choices between mine work and participation in various programs for learning and self-sufficiency.