April 4, 2011 – Mata Amritanandamayi, a woman who has hugged more than 30 million people around the world, is in Kenya for a three-day visit.
Also known as the hugging saint, Mata aka “Amma” will be fighting the ‘poverty of love’ in Kenya.
“There are two types of poverty in the world, financial poverty and the poverty of love; the second is more important,” Amma told CNN in an interview.
Amma means mother in South India but can also be used to refer to a big sister. And in the same spirit of motherhood, Amma’s hugs have been described by those who’ve received them as ‘divine’.
She was received at the JKIA on Monday morning by the Vice President’s wife Pauline Musyoka, who is also a trustee of the Kalonzo Musyoka Foundation.
During her three-day tour she will inaugurate the Amrita Watoto Boma or Amrita Children’s home near Athi River Tuesday morning, under the auspices of the M.A Math Charitable Trust Kenya, who organized the tour.
Committee member Vijay Kumar says the inauguration will be the highlight of Amma’s visit.
This is the third time the Hugging Saint will be visiting the country, the last time being 2009 when she laid a foundation for Amrita Watoto Boma, or Amrita Children’s Home.
The orphanage will be home to over 100 destitute children and will offer shelter, food, and education and healthcare.
“She has inspired and started innumerable humanitarian services the world over. She has also earned international recognition for her outstanding contributions to the world community,” said Kumar.
Globally, Amma has inspired and started innumerable humanitarian services and is recognized as an extraordinary spiritual leader by the United Nations.
Uplifting the suffering of humanity through HUGS has been Amma’s life for the past 35 years.
Her popularity has risen to the point where in India she has been known to hug thousands of people in a day, sitting sometimes for over 20 hours.
Born in a small fishing village in Kerala, South India, 57 years ago Amma was given the name Sudhamani (Pure Jewel). It is said that unlike other babies who come into the world in tears, she came into the world with a smile on her face. From an early age, she was known to always help ease the suffering of those around her.
Her philosophy; “Love is the only medicine that can heal the wounds of the world”.
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