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January 27, 2014

Mothers Without Borders founder speaks

NORMAN — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Norman held a large crowd Sunday night during a public devotional.

The devotional featured a couple who talked about two very different spiritual journeys that ended up intertwining in Africa.

Mothers Without Borders Founder Kathy Headlee-Miner gave her message first, talking about the love many people in Africa had for God, and the love that God has for each of his children. She also talked about the impact just one person can have in sharing their love.

Miner recited a quote from Mother Teresa and how the famous woman only helped one person at a time, also reciting a quote about getting closer to Christ by coming together. She told stories about the problems in Africa she and other volunteers have witnessed and helped with.

According to a church press release, Mothers Without Borders is a non-profit organization reaching out to children in

Zambia to address the needs of orphaned and abandoned children in a holistic manner. The organization supports efforts to provided safe shelter, food and clean water, education and access to caring adults.

Every 14 seconds a child loses a parent to AIDS in sub-Sahara Africa. In just one day, 6,100 children will lose a parent, she said, reading several statistics from her PowerPoint Sunday.

“They’re not just numbers to me, they’re children,” Miner said. “This crisis is enormous, but we are bigger.”

By knowing what the problem is, people know where they can start helping, she said.

Miner’s husband, Phillip, shared a different story and different experience with the audience Sunday. He talked about his journey to Africa to portray Jesus Christ in a portrait by Christian artist Liz Lemon Swindle.

Swindle’s painting, set in the African orphanage, helped him find Christ and led to his conversion to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In the beginning, he thought of the situation somewhat like portraying Santa Clause and what the children would think if they found out he wasn’t really Jesus.

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