Father Ray Outreach Work & Drop-In Center
The brand new Half Way House officially opened in January of this year. Two young men were very excited to be the first two residents of the house, and for a few months everything was going well. They enjoyed living in the house, were learning to become independent and were relying less on the support staff from the nearby Drop-In Center. A third young man joined the household and they were all happily living together, until recently. Thais are very superstitious, and many believe in spirits, or ‘Pii’ as they are called here in Thailand. One of the boys complained that he had heard noises and felt someone was in the house when he was alone. A staff member then mentioned that she too felt that there was a ‘Pii’ in the house and she would no longer enter the building. One young man was so scared about being in the house alone that he would wait until his housemates returned home from work late at night before entering the house.
It was therefore decided to ask for help from the local Buddhist temple. Nine Buddhist monks arrived and performed a ceremony that would rid the house of all bad spirits. The head monk led his fellow monks in specials prayers, and as the prayers were being chanted he lit a candle and allowed the wax to drip into a bowl of water. Using a bamboo sprinkler he showered the holy water over all those who attended the ceremony. He then walked down to the Half Way House, and entering all the rooms he once again chanted a special prayer that would remove all bad spirits from the building. The lock on one room was broken and it was impossible to enter the room, so the monk stood in front of the door, covered it with holy water and shouted his blessing through the door. Every room on the complex received a blessing, and once over a special meal was provided for all the monks as they need to eat before noon. They enjoyed a meal of fried fish with garlic, hot and spicy prawn soup, sweet and sour chicken and a bean and pork curry. That night the boys returned to the Half Way House and had a quiet and peaceful nights sleep.