This week we began the feeding center here at Love Guatemala. This was a project that I heard about when I first arrived, but I thought was far off in the future. Then I found myself mixing concrete with the students and at the Antigua market for food with the cooking ladies. Before I knew it, we were standing in a beautifully decorated room ready to welcome the most desperate children of our community into our building for lunch. I’m learning that we dream big here. I am also becoming acutely aware to the need of this program.
During dinner the other night, I was telling Telma how amazing the artwork of one of her students in the art school was. I had been watching the student paint earlier that day and was blown away by the quality, technique, and passion this student clearly had for this craft. Bluntly, Telma replied, “And she doesn’t have food at home either.” She is very proud of her students’ work and also is aware to the immensely difficult reality many of them face. She went on to explain how many students confide in her their needs for food, clothing, school supplies, and the list never ends.
It is this relationship Telma and the other teachers of Love Guatemala have with their students that lead to the creation of the Feeding Center.
It has been the dream of Carlos and Telma for a long time and it is finally happening. With the help of Virginia Team 6 who we were privileged to have here on this momentous week, we began serving up food to children in need in our community this week.
The faces of these children are like that of Jesus. I understood what it means to give a cup of water and a bowl of food to those in need this week. Granted, I had very little part in the creation of this endeavor, but every person in the room on Tuesday felt and understood the significance this program will hold in Magdalena and the greater area. Every person understood the importance of the Gospel in their lives and more of what it means to follow in the steps of Jesus. I pray this little food will help students to focus more in class and be able to learn more, work harder, and provide better for their families. I hope that Jesus’ name is made known in this country even more through conversations that open up with children and their parents through this program.
I know that the tears we shared with each other after the children left on Tuesday were those of joy and desperation for more of Jesus in this place. May our hearts broke for these little ones like the young girl in purple who put down three plates of food as if she were really an NFL defensive end. I wasn’t going to stop her because I knew that this may be the only food she saw until Thursday at lunch when she returned.
We served 43 on Tuesday. 62 on Thursday. As with all things, God provides. The message is going out and we pray that others continue to support this ever so worthy cause.
Lastly, a big thank you to our team from Virginia for all of their work this week. Thank you Tom, Cindy, Lisa, Taylor, Jane, and their fearless leader Kim for your passion for Love Guatemala. This team does so much in spreading the word about us in the states. They talk at churches, hold fundraisers, and are always praying. I am so thankful to have spent the week with you and see the joy with which you live your lives. Thank you Kim for teaching me to see the lighter side of life and not get caught up in the bad. You live with a simple joy constantly thanking God for life and the opportunity to help wherever you can. Painting for Jesus! Thank you for coming back again and again. You are making a difference in the lives of children through the relationships you build here. We were immensely blessed by ya’ll this week. Hasta Pronto!
A new friend,
Caleb the Intern