A woman in Cambodia raises chickens through a project supported by ELCA World Hunger. Credit: Rachel Cook/LWF.

This Easter season, as we give thanks for the resurrection of Jesus Christ and a chance to be born anew, let us recommit ourselves to God’s call for us to love and serve our neighbors both near and far.

One of our global neighbors whom we support through ELCA World Hunger lives in Bangladesh.  And because of a custom many of us take part in at Easter—painting Easter eggs—I am reminded of her story, which will appear in the summer issue of LifeLines newsletter due out in late April. Here’s a sneak preview:

“Lipi Bergum lives in Bangladesh in a small hut with her husband, two children and elderly mother-in-law. With no land of their own, Lipi’s family used to get by on what meager pay her husband—a day laborer for nearby farmers—could earn. They often struggled, especially in the rainy season.

During the rainy season in northwest Bangladesh, when rice fields traditionally lie dormant, there is no work or wages for farm laborers. Day laborers and their families are often reduced to begging or worse—going hungry. For a long time, that was the reality Lipi and her family faced.

That changed when Lipi joined a local Farmer Field School run by RDRS, a long-established rural development organization supported by ELCA World Hunger.  RDRS understood her situation and gave her some ideas. Before long, with the help of a microloan, Lipi built a little shed on the family’s homestead and began raising a flock of 200 chickens to generate income.”

Lipi’s chickens yield countless eggs, and because of these chickens Lipi and her family no longer go hungry during the rainy season.  When you or the children in your life collected those Easter baskets, reflect on the importance of eggs not only for nourishment but for the life-saving difference chickens and eggs make in other parts of the world.

If you didn’t get around to buying that special Easter gift for someone you care about, consider giving 10 chicks for $10 or another truly meaningful gift and putting a special gift notice in someone’s post-Easter card or upcoming birthday or special-occasion card.

Hallelujah!  He is risen!  He is risen indeed, hallelujah!

-Aaron Cooper is writer-editor for ELCA World Hunger