We started January out with a Joshua Expeditions team. They bring their group members out for a day or two to do social work in the host country. This time they brought a group of 45 youth to the A.P. The kids worked hard moving lumber to our new “bodega” (warehouse) on our new lot. So thankful for young people who are willing to serve wherever and whenever needed! Southside Christian Church brought an all men’s team down in order to construct a Sunday School area for a local church in Rio Azul (near the Abraham Project). The team had to dig out a basement and put up walls and flooring. Pastor Gilbert was delighted to have the guys there in order to get a much needed job completed! Now the kids will have a place of their own where they can learn about Jesus!
As far as news from the children’s homes, at the end of last year we had two sets of siblings returned to their families. Kevin and Maria Celeste had been with us for five months. Their biological parents did everything that the PANI asked them to do in order to regain their children. During this process, we had a meeting with the local office and expressed our concerns of reuniting the family. Kevin struggles with low self esteem issues brought on by an alcoholic step father and an absent mother. This is the part of the job that is so hard to deal with. Sometimes it seems like PANI looks out for the interest of the parents rather than those of the children they are supposed to protect.
Jimena and Scarleth were also given back to their mother. The sisters were only with us for four months. Their mother was a victim of domestic violence, as were the girls. Their mother has “supposedly” left that partner and is now raising the girls on her own. Scarleth, the youngest, cried a lot before she left. She told our house parents that she did not want to go back. It’s interesting that even though she was here a short time, she knew exactly where she came from and didn’t want to go back. Thankfully, their time here was a lesson in unconditional love and the knowledge that to Father God they are priceless!
We are pleased to announce the Kindergarten Graduation of Jefreson and Aislinn on December 11th. The kids enjoyed their graduation and afterwards an outing with the tios to Pizza Hut. We are so proud of them. Please pray for a smooth transition to first grade, as that can be a big adjustment for any child.
Good News! Good News! All the kids in the homes passed the school year! We have made an exception and decided to hold Sol back in first grade, due to a maturity issue. We feel like this is in her best interest and will help her in the future.
Since Isaac is one of the older kids in the homes, we have decided that instead of going to daycare he will be working with Bruce, our resident missionary. This has turned out to be a very good thing for him, as he has had to clean a dirty refrigerator in the multi use building, paint, put up a new clothes line for the children’s homes, and more. This will go a long way in teaching him skills for his future, plus personal responsibility.
We do not take lightly your faithful support over the years. We trust that as you continue to give, the Lord will pour out His blessings on all that you set your hands to do!