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January Newsletter
Father Brendan

Dear Friend of Bethlehem,

In our last issue I mentioned that one of our staff members was getting married in December, well now I have the news that another staff member has set a date for early April for her wedding.  Congratulations to both of them.  We do need families here that will raise children to love one another.

In mid October of last year Mr. Lai Ching-de came to visit Bethlehem, and he was later elected to be the Mayor of the Greater Tainan City.  Congratulations to him.  May he receive many graces from God to be a good Mayor.  One of his appointees is now the Chief of the Social Welfare Dept, Miss Chao Ai-lan.  I have known her for thirty years or so, as she was one of the three founders of the First Development Center in Taipei City.  She met with all of the heads of various welfare organizations here in the City recently and said that both the Social Welfare Dept. and social welfare organizations are equal partners in the job of developing programs to help those who need help. That was a great way to start.  There are big problems already, however.  Under the former Tainan County government Social Welfare Dept. our parents received more support from the government for their children with a developmental delay.  Now we have to follow the procedures of the former Tainan City and that means a cut of over two thousand NT per month per child. Possibly some parents will be unwilling or unable to pay any extra money for their children’s education, especially at such a young age, and that would be a tragedy.  We need to start educating children with a developmental delay as early as possible.  Please pray that all of our parents will decide to work with us to help their child with special learning needs to continue with our programs and develop as much as possible.

With thanks to a benefactor in the US we now have a beautiful Christmas Crib set up in front of our property.  Previously we only had a very small set, but as you can see in the picture on page three, the crib set is really colorful and grabs the attention of our children. 

We also thank the Taipei Tam Hai Rotary Club, the Taipei Paramount Rotary Club and the Hsueh Jia Rotary Club for the new entrance to our property.  It really looks good and is quite attractive.  We still have a larger section of the front fence to replace, but that will have to wait for another day.   In the meantime work is being done on the Church in back of our property.  That is going very slowly, however, and there is no way of saying just when it will be complete.  But once it is finished, it will be a nice place for our students to be quiet, meditate and/or pray.  The funds for the Church repairs are coming from other sources and not from the gifts you send us. 

Thank you very much for continuing to support our work to help infants and young children with a developmental delay.

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