Friday, April 13, 2012

Guatemala Journal – The Silence and the Pain (Part X)

I traveled to Guatemala on a Saturday with our national senior account executive from Salem Radio, five of my colleagues from Food For The Poor (FFP) and the 13 coolest Christian radio hosts (some also pastors) that one could ever imagine, coming from as close by as the west coast of Florida and as far away as Hawaii...

Part X:  The Good News

When Jesus first started His public ministry, He was given the scrolls of the prophet Isaiah. He chose to read the section that spoke of the good news for the poor.

FFP Videographer Ian Wood with some new friends
This trip was not lacking in good news for the poor.

We visited a thriving animal husbandry project (pigs and chickens) for widows. We played with the children of El Chulin Feeding Center, having bought the food at the market earlier and helped in the kitchen to prepare this special meal for them. We visited a successful tilapia-farming project for a community of 75 homes, both funded through the generosity of our donors. Here we were treated to freshly caught, nicely seasoned, fried tilapia. We were also treated to a delicious meal at the “pelibuey” project. Pelilbueys are a special cross-breed between goats and sheep, and the community had already increased their stock from 50 to more than 80 animals.

But there was also good news that was more intimately connected to the emotional content of our trip. Besides bringing food, clothing, shoes, mattresses and hope for the families we visited, our local partners in Guatemala managed to procure land for all those we visited who were renting from others. This means that, again, through the caring of our beloved donors, we will begin to build homes for all families visited on this trip. In particular, Catarina Sacrohope owned the land by the cliff, but we could not build there. However, during our visit, a kind neighbor decided that she would give Catarina a piece of land further up the mountain and away from the edge of the precipice.

The greatest gift that we can share with the poor is our gift of presence. It comes with a feeling of brotherhood, of caring, of walking the extra mile, of coming out of our very comfortable worlds daring to understand their world of suffering and sorrow – it comes with an offer of love and hope.

THE END

 

12 comments:

Unknown said...

Your closing words echo those of St. Paul. There are an abundance of God-given gifts; spiritual and physical. The greatest of these is love.
Love, manifested and incarnated in the:
presence of those who traveled the extra mile;
land procured for housing;
hybrid animals (ironic that its sheep and goats);
tilapia fried and shared.
They recognized the Risen Christ in the breaking of bread sharing of fish.
We are one in The Spirit.
Thank you for your blog.

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