Sule is an intelligent boy. Every morning he is home schooled. Sule is only 6 but he already knows how to read and write and do calculations. Sule is staying with the School Sisters of Notre Dame at one of our convents in Germany.
On St. Nicholas Day Sule visited the Sisters in the dining hall dressed as Saint Nicholas. He read his self-made little speech from his golden book, a message which touched all:
“Dear Sisters, I wish you that you are always happy. If you are angry with a sister just sorry and I love you even if you are angry with me.”
Then he gave each sister a sweet with his small “new” hand. Sometimes he sings happy birthday to his fingers.
Sule’s story began when he was three and it began a long way from Germany in Ghana. Sule lived with his aunt. She sent the 3 year old with a coin to buy some charcoal. Somehow Sule lost the coin. Out of anger his aunt roasted his hands and feet in a fire. He was left with fourth degree burns on his hands and legs. He was not taken to a hospital. Instead his mother and his aunt treated the burns with salt water and eggs.
Later he was taken to the hospital but the doctor who bandaged his hands did not bandage his fingers and toes separately. This left Sule with stumps on both his hands and feet. Sule’s parents divorced and he lived with his father who tried everything to get him help. Sister Liz Newman who ministers at the Orthopedic Training Center in Nsawam, Ghana became interested in what could be done for Sule. She appealed for help and, along with Sister Elis found a reconstructive surgeon in Munich, Germany willing to operate to give Sule some relief.
It was the only chance for this child that otherwise would be condemned to living a life not only of dependence but having a cultural stigma. When Prf. Ninkovic gave his final Yes to operate on Sule’s club hands, fund-raising was begun in Germany and among our friends. People were touched by Sule’s condition and helped find the needed amount of money for the surgeries. In early November 2012 Sr. Elis flew with Sule to Munich where the Sisters of the Motherhouse warmly welcomed them. Since this time Sule is a “member” of the Candidate community, who helped him to feel at home.
These pictures are hard to see but there is hope for Sule through the generosity of many people. More about Sule’s progress in the next post.