"Who are you? And where did you come from?" she managed to ask.
"We have come here to serve the elderly people, widows and needy people," the young women, named Valini and Salila, explained.
Overcome with emotion in response to these loving words, tears streamed down Rayna's aged face as she showed them a cultural sign of respect by touching their feet.
"Amma [mother], you do not need to touch our feet," the women implored. "Rather we need to touch your feet."
Stooping down, Valini and Salila sat next to Rayna and listened as she poured out her heart, sharing her family's struggles. The elderly widow was so happy to have the company of these two GFA-supported women missionaries, and she asked them to come again to see her. With love and concern, Valini and Salila visited her twice a week and prayed for her each time. God even brought healing to Rayna's swollen face through the prayers of the sisters. Rayna was so thankful to the Lord, and she began to attend prayer meetings with her daughter and one of her grandsons.
Missionaries Meet an Immediate Need
As the Sisters of Compassion made their weekly visits with Rayna, they quickly noticed her torn, smelly blanket. They watched as Rayna's daughter worked hard each day, and they marveled how they stayed alive on her meager income. Valini and Salila realized the family couldn't even afford a new blanket, because they used all their income on their survival needs for the day.
Valini and Salila wanted to help, so they requested Rayna to be a recipient of a blanket during a GFA-supported Christmas gift distribution planned for the poor villagers in their area.
"During night time, I feel cold because there were no warm clothes in my house, and I struggled a lot.."
With Valini and Salila to guide her, Rayna made her way into the village where the distribution was held. Rayna saw a thick, purple, pink and green blanket in the hands of a pastor. Then, it was wrapped around her frail shoulders. It was soft and warm—no more stench or holes, but instead, a tight weave to shield her from the weather.
"During night time, I feel cold because there were no warm clothes in my house, and I struggled a lot," Rayna said. "I could not afford to buy a blanket to protect me. But thank you very much for giving this blanket."