“Today was a great day! I got to go to a place I had never been to, a nursing home, and I got to talk to people up to the age of 90 and probably older than that. They were very funny and had lots of stories to share with us! After that we went to a Catholic orphanage and got a tour of that. There was a little girl there that had Leukemia and we got to pray for her, which was awesome! From there, we went to San Martine! I had a great time and had lots of laughs with all of them. They constantly had a smile on their face and that made me happy. I hope they never forget the moments we spend with them. The last place we went was the Aids orphanage. When we first got there, there was a little girl sitting alone and not talking to anyone. I kept asking what her name was, but she wouldn’t talk. I ended up pullin her off the couch and taking her outside and she ended up telling me her name. Maria, and was just stuck to me like glue. She was constantly asking me swing her and pick her up. She was the highlight of my day! But like I said, it was a great day!”-Christan Flowers
Tonight the team hit the streets of El Salvador to feed over 150 homeless people. After a long preparation of the meals, the team finally headed out in the back of Kurt’s pick-up truck to deliver the food. They had a blast! Again, a big thanks to those of you who have financially supported the homeless feeding programs.
Tomorrow the team will be taking the children from the Special Needs orphanage, San Martin, to the beach! What a blessing that will be! Would you please pray for patience and energy for the team? After an extremely busy day and a late night of feeding the homeless, they are bound to be exhausted!
“July 19 is usually a slow summer day for me. Maybe I will grill or take a swim or watch my girls ride a horse. I have always felt that summer was a time to slow down and to enjoy the easy things in life. I learned a new lesson today. The most rewarding experiences of your life will be difficult, heart-wrenching, exciting, exhausting and will not be centered around you, but around others.
Our day began at 5:00 this morning when we began getting ready for our roller coaster day. We prepared scrambled eggs and refried beans for breakfast for the families of AIDS patients who are in the hospital. I found the combination unique but it is commonplace in El Salvador.
Our group of 11 plus our translators and other missionaries loaded the van and headed to the mountain to see a beautiful senior citizens home. A doctor left his property and an endowment to construct a model community for the elderly and someday soon an orphanage that promotes interaction with the two groups. Financial ability is not an issue here. There are so many beautiful smiling faces at Ciudadela. I love that concept. Orphans with no grandparents or families learning from the elderly while helping them to meet their physical and emotional needs. I was privileged to meet a 91 year old man who was rich with stories. He was such a blessing to me. I held his hand and we spoke to each other as the we were life long friends. We did crafts with the residents and left their favorite, “mister donuts.”
In the middle of El Salvador is a lovely orphanage run by the catholic church. It was incredibly organized and immaculately kept. The Nuns patiently explained their challenges and needs. I hope someday that we can help them to meet some of their needs. I met a young lady there who was only four. She was beautiful with large almond eyes and gorgeous curly black hair. I watched her for a while and noticed a sadness in her that the other children didn’t display. Finally, the head of the orphanage approached me and explained that beautiful Katherine has leukemia and is still very ill from a treatment. I wanted to wrap my arms around her and run. I wanted to be her “mama.” I thought about the injustice that she had to fight the disease without a loving family to surround her. Then I remembered that our heavenly father loves her more than I could ever love her. We all held hands in the hallway and prayed for that precious child.
In the afternoon we headed to St. Martin, a home for people with special needs. They are beautiful in a different way than I would usually consider people beautiful. The simplicity of their wants and needs make them delightful to know. Pablito lives there. He is a precious man with downs syndrome. Laura had fallen in love with him and helped him find a diagnosis and treatment for his illness. Today he walks around in her sunglasses and thinks he is a movie star. Kike is a boy who was used as a drug mule. When I saw him in February he was confined to the bed as he moaned in excruciating pain. Today thanks to therapy and prayer he is sitting up, eating soft food, and even taking one or two steps alone with his walker. Ahhh, progress. Derek was so cute dancing with the young people. Eliza helped with crafts and most of the residents made necklaces with crosses and beads. But the highlight of our visit had to be David saying “Roll Tide Roll” under the direction of some very devout Alabama fans.
Next door we visited the Aids orphanage where Cassidy entertained the young children with a puppet show. Our precious interpreter, Jenny, read to them. Callie taught them how to do cartwheels and backbends. They loved playing in their backyard with the guys. Tug of war was there favorite. As they all finally fell over entangled with our team members, we erupted in laughter and it was a perfect end to our visit.
After dinner, we prepared over 140 meals for the homeless. OK Here comes the part about being excited and scared and overwhelmed. Imagine people with nothing, no really nothing. Weathered faces, ragged clothes, toothless smiles exhausted from the attempt to stay alive. When they hear the roar of the diesel truck they know that Kurt is bringing another team with food. One elderly lady graciously accepted her gift then lifted her hands to the Lord to give thanks. A true vision of what Thessalonians 5:18 means. One young boy of about ten ran to the side of our truck begging for food. His feet were bare and his clothes were so so big. Our hearts broke but his spirits were lifted when Laura threw the tennis shoes off her feet to him. Laura returned home barefoot but we all learned a lot about giving.
Tonight I am writing this with a list of about hundred things racing through my mind. There is so much to do here. I hope if you are reading this you will join us by doing whatever God leads you to do. It will change your life and grow your heart!..”– Jackie Smith