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From Pain to Peace

By TWR Staff
Africa, Ethiopia, S&E Africa, TWR Women of Hope

The following true story came from the first report out of Ethiopia from the TWR Women of Hope (formerly Project Hannah) ministry in the country.  The names and some details in the story are altered to protect the real people portrayed.

Ama* was scared, yet excited.  The dance ceremony would be so much fun.  Allo* was so good looking.  Dancing with him would be the envy of all the girls in her Aari village in their remote part of Ethiopia.   At 14 years of age nearly all her friends were already married.  Now it was her turn to have some fun.

Four weeks later, Ama realized she had more than the flu. Food didn't smell good at all, and she couldn't keep her stomach from feeling like a rolling boat on a restless sea.  She had become pregnant from the dance ceremony.  Now she could marry Allo, who was also 14 years old, because everyone would know she was healthy and fertile.  But culturally, a baby from the dance ceremony is considered a curse and must be eliminated.

Soon after Ama and Allo married, Ama became pregnant again.  Ama was very glad because she could keep this baby. When the time of delivery came, she waited at home for three days. The local midwife, a Christian lady, told her that the position of the baby was not right. The family discussed whether to take her to the hospital. It would take five hours to make the journey, carrying Ama on a makeshift bed.

However, the parents of her husband went to the witch doctor to discover if there was a curse on the baby that prevented the baby from being safely delivered. The witch doctor told them that there was no curse, but she would deliver the baby with complications.

The decision was made to carry Ama to the hospital.  By then, Ama was in a coma.  At the hospital the baby was delivered, stillborn. Two days later, Ama awoke from the coma but suffered complications from a ruptured fistula.  Her husband was asked to bring money to have her taken to another hospital for treatment to repair the fistula. He refused, which resulted in Ama's uncle having to pay for the treatment, which was successful.  Ama's husband did not come back to her.

After suffering so much tragedy in her young life, today Ama is a Christian, married to a wonderful Christian husband and together they have a healthy baby boy.  Ama allowed the TWR women’s ministry coordinator to choose a name for her baby. With joy a Biblical name was given to the miracle baby.

Pray for the Aari people of Ethiopia, especially the young mothers, many of whom suffer great physical and emotional pain.  Also pray for the TWR outreach in Ethiopia as they partner with a Christian medical team to bring hope and healing to teenagers of childbearing age.

*Names changed for security reasons

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