Lent calendar prayer and reflection for 2 April

Farida Yasmin, disability rights activist in Bangladesh

Farida Yasmin, disability rights activist in Bangladesh.

Seek the Lord and his strength, tirelessly seek his presence

Psalm 104:4

Having lost the use of her legs when she was a small child, Farida faced discrimination at school and became very withdrawn. She didn’t like to go out.

But through group training and discussions, organised by our local experts, Farida’s confidence has grown. She now works tirelessly to support other people with disabilities in her part of Bangladesh.

“A lot of my work now consists of talking to family members to make them understand that disabled people also have some worth.

“I make it a point to tell families that disability is not a burden or a curse. This too is a gift from God. Yes, I am disabled, but I can move around, I can do things for myself, I can work, and I am grateful to God for being able to do all of these things.

“Now I tell others: if I can do it, why can’t you?”

As well as working to help break down stigma, Farida helps people get their disability cards so that they can receive government disability allowance. She helps them to start saving and to look for work to become more independent.

Farida’s life is one of service to others, and this brings her a deep sense of satisfaction and fulfilment. As she says, “I feel really happy to be able to do anything for anyone, it doesn’t really matter what anyone else thinks of me… It gives me a lot of comfort to do something for others.

“I can be of some use, not only to my disabled brothers and sisters, but anyone who needs some help. I now feel like if everyone is given the opportunities that I was, then they can do it too. Everyone has something in them that can be a positive influence for others.”

Lent prayer

Lord God, we are called to lives of service, especially to serve those who are poor, excluded or vulnerable. Grant me the strength to respond to your call, in whatever way I can. May I always seek to act out of love for all your people, our global family. Amen.

Act

Reflect with this beautiful spoken word prayer, From the mountain top, about how all of us on earth are responsible for one another.

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