Pastor Adopts 22 Abandoned Kids, 16 Of Whom Have HIV
Pastor Reji Thomas and his wife decided to start taking in abandoned children back in 2007. It started with him praying for a girl with HIV.
“A 12-year-old girl was admitted in a local hospital and I was called to pray for her,” Reji said. “She was in a terrible condition. Her parents died of HIV and she was also HIV positive.”
The pastor belongs to Mumbai, India, a country with the world’s highest population of people afflicted with HIV.
“She wanted to have noodles that day, and I promised to get it the next day. She died the same night. It was a terrible experience. That day I decided to take care of such kids.”
Reji has now adopted 22 abandoned kids. 16 of those kids have been diagnosed with HIV. Initially Reji’s family was against him adopting kids with HIV.
“My family thought I was doing something wrong. Having kids who were HIV positive was not a wise idea. But later it was fine with them. We now live like a family.”
Reji can take care of his children with the help of NGOs, and he still helps other kids in local shelters and hospitals.
“There is no difference between them and us. My wife is now proud to have all the kids with her.”
The kids were initially very unhealthy when Reji met them. However, they are now well taken care of both physically and emotionally.
“I was against the idea of having HIV kids in our house. But later I realized I was wrong,” said Justin, Reji’s biological son. “They are part of our family now. I am so proud of my dad.”
The family hopes to continue adopting kids who are in need of love and care.
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