Healing Colombia, Bogotá, Colombia
Twenty-four youngsters ages 12 to 20 years, joined hands and sang softly for the audience of 1000 people. The singers wore matching cowboy bandanas on their heads, as some had no hair, and the ones who did wanted those who didn't to look the same as them. Silence fell on the audience; the sweet faces and calm presence of these singers hushed even the most boisterous spectator.
The performers are kids sick with cancer. Some stood on their one good leg, or used their only hand to hold the hand of the person standing beside them. Others limped to the stage and smiled timidly at the audience.
When we first came in contact with these young wards of the Dharma Foundation here in Colombia, they immediately bonded with us, begging our friendship, which in turn developed into weekly visits & our working with them.
We were asked to help them prepare two songs to be sung in appreciation to their sponsors. We chose to help them do two renditions by Gloria Estefan that speak of love and forgiveness. On the night of this special dinner we were amazed to find ourselves in front of some of the most influential business people in Colombia.
When they sang, backed by our musical accompaniment, there wasn't a dry eye in the audience. It was a very moving experience that deeply touched people. Why? Because you can't come away from such an experience without facing your own fears of life and death; you can't forget the tranquil happiness that surrounds this very special chorus. Just to see them standing there singing transmits hope.
How can people who face death every day transmit so much? Because whether they live or die, they are ready. They have peace about whatever comes their way, and this makes one feel ashamed of the smaller difficulties that so many of us succumb to in our lives.
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