There is nothing a child anticipates more than Christmas day. As ordinary cities worldwide begin their transformation into a brightly lit wonderland, children begin to sense that the joy of Christmas is right around the corner. It really doesn’t matter where a child lives – they all wish for a merry Christmas that will make their tiny dreams come true!
Guatemala City is no exception. I was so blessed this past week to join our mission team as we brought joy and hope to hundreds of people throughout the city. I wish all of you could have experienced what our team did as we touched people with love and kindness over a jam-packed five days full of ministry to the children and people of Guatemala.
I’d like to take a moment to share with you how lives were forever changed:
|Anyone who has ever visited Dorie’s Promise knows that it’s our special mothers who make our house a home. This Christmas our team brought all 32 special mothers a small gift and put on a Christmas party to show our appreciation for the hard work they do year round to care for our children.
Christmas joy filled the home at Dorie’s Promise this season, giving all 33 children a night to remember. Each child felt special as they put on a Christmas outfit purchased just for them. Their faces were all aglow as they opened their gifts. So many hugs and smiles as they got into the Christmas spirit as only children can.
Our program with our past birth mothers in Guatemala has always been close to my heart. More than 28 of these women joined us for a breakfast that provided not only a warm meal but also information about how their children were doing. The highlight was one of our mothers sharing her testimony about how she came to the Lord.
Hundreds of children and their families lined up to receive something special from the members of our team. We handed out more than 1,200 pieces of bread as well as candy canes, toys, socks, and soap to people who literally make their home alongside mountains of garbage. I can still see the faces of the children within the garbage dump – HUNGRY YET HOPEFUL that there are people in this cold world who care enough to bring them something to eat this Christmas season.
56 children live within the walls of an orphanage Hogar Madre Ana Vitiello that cares for HIV positive children. Smiles were everywhere as our team put on a beautiful Christmas party for these children. Each child got to participate in making their own Christmas ornament and enjoyed filling their tummies with Christmas cake. Each child was able to receive a small gift. There joy was immeasurable as we sang Christmas carols in both English and Spanish.
Our team was able to purchase 20 beds with bedding for the girls of Pura de Ross children’s home. These teenage girls were sleeping on beds more than 50 years old. The metal framed beds were very uncomfortable and in much need of replacement. Our team saw this incredible need and was able to help these children transform their living quarters into something that made them all feel special! It was also quite apparent the girls’ love for the show Hannah Montana as the girls squealed for joy over two Hannah blankets that were hung to decorate their room.
Our day at the ghetto left me raw with emotion. Our mission Coordinator Ashley Williams has made her home within this place that most Guatemalans fear to go. We were able to give two families new beds and bring gifts and candies to the children and people of this impoverished community. We were also able to witness the amazing REVIVAL happening within Ashley’s neighborhood. You couldn’t help but feel God’s presence within a community that only a few short years ago was so full of an oppressing evil that trapped the hearts and minds of the people living there. All my sincere admiration to Ashley for following God’s leading to live amongst the people of the ghetto. Their lives have been Forever Changed by her commitment to serve there.
Each of these opportunities to serve has forever changed MY LIFE this Christmas. In only five days my passion for serving those in need grew in ways I didn’t think was possible.
Nothing is more fulfilling then giving of yourself and resources to help an innocent child feel loved and cared for even if it can only be for a moment.
What we do daily at Dorie’s Promise is so BEYOND SPECIAL, bringing joy to children who come to us from the most desperate living conditions in the garbage dump and the ghetto!
Please pray for our ministry this holiday season and ask that the Lord continues to provide us with what He knows we need to keep on helping the children of Guatemala. I got to see firsthand this Christmas how God’s love forever changed the lives of those we were honored to serve.
I hope you know how important your prayers and support are to this ministry. Without those who believe in serving orphans, we would not be able to touch as many lives as we do each week through this ministry.
I wish you and your family a Merry Christmas and look forward to sharing with you next year many more stories about lives changed as well as opportunities for you to continue to serve with us!