Very quietly, so every eye and ear focused on her, Rama stated her truth.
“Ramabai is dead. The person you sent in your stead is dead and gone.”
Rama listened to the collective intake of breath.
“What will you do?” Rama left a pregnant pause. “You can’t count on a single person to do your work. That person will die. This Association must not die. It must be reborn and continue to do God’s work. We need $20,000 a year, and God will give it to us.”
Before the members could fully register the amount, Rama changed tact.
“When I left India, I thought I was too old to continue. How could I think of building Mukti?
“Then I thought of Anna, the prophetess in Jerusalem, the widow who worked at the temple for eighty-four years. God told me if I live to be as old as Anna, I must work until then. Dear friends, I bring the same message to you. We’re part of God’s work until we die. India’s widows and orphans cry for help. How can you turn away?”
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