Trip Dates: 23 June – 1 July, 2018
Two weeks ago thirteen intrepid Swift Creek Baptist Church members headed to Guatemala. The goal of the trip: to show Christ to 350+ battered and neglected children at Casa Para Niños Aleluya.
My prayer going into this missions trip was that everyone would get more than they ever expected from God, and this prayer was answered in spades. We had plenty of opportunity to serve:
- Painted 3 rooms for new incoming missionary ladies to live in
- Painted and installed shower partitions for the 10-13-year-old boy’s dorm bathroom
- Cleaned dormitories for incoming mission teams
- Tidied up the compost pile area
- Down loaded 3 truckloads of supplies
- Fed and witnessed to a neighborhood
- Took the 14-20-year-old boys dorm out for lunch and a movie for their first outing in 2 years.
- Played night soccer and basketball with the older boys until late at night
- Zip lines, shopped, and ate Guatemalan cuisine at Antigua, Guatemala on a day off
- AND, OF COURSE, WE PLAYED AND TALKED WITH ALL THE KIDS A LOT!!!
But that really describes what we did, but not so much the impact.
It was amazing in the short time we were there all of the the opportunities he had to build significant relationships with the staff, the American and Guatemalan dorm parents, and of course the kids!
The best way to describe it is in a story about 9-year-old Sammy. Sammy ‘s parents are separated and his mother is a serious risk to take care of him and his siblings due to drug and alcohol abuse and mental problems. My family first met Sammy when we visited last year and were able to establish a relationship with him. While we were here this year, the entire team spent a lot of time loving on Sammy.
Casa gives the opportunity for each child's family to come and visit them on “Family Day.” All the kids get dressed up and prepared for this day just in case. Sammy has never had a visitor. When “Family Day” came around during our visit, Sammy got all ready in anticipation and was disappointed once again. He was devastated. But later when he saw my son Noah, he cupped Noah’s face in his hands, got eye-to-eye with Noah and said, “You are my family. You come to see me.”
Giving a little love and attention to these kids goes a long way toward cementing their security and showing them Christ in a very tangible way. What an incredible opportunity!
We will be sharing our trip in detail in the Fellowship Hall at 9:30am on Sunday, 22 July. We would love to have anyone or any Sunday School class who is interested to come and join us!
Of course, next June we will take another trip to Guatemala and hope you will come join us for that as well. It is a tremendously rewarding experience!
Look forward to seeing you on 22 July!
—Tim Lindsay, Guatemala Trip Leader