The pastor who runs the orphanage is also the man who started it. He started this work because he and his wife have a child who was born with a significant and profound disability. As they begin seeking out help with care for their son, they found there was nothing available. So, they started rescuing children like their own son. The pastor now lives on the site where the orphanage is located, but the day to day work with the children is accomplished primarily through volunteers who are nothing short of angels of mercy.
There are many things that I could write to try to explain to you the experience but I will allow some pictures to tell the story.
This is our new friend Ruth. She welcomed everyone with a huge smile and a hug. Such a sweet spirit in this little child.
We were able to help out with lunch.
I love this picture for many reasons but focus on the faces of Ruth, Jacob, and Eli. Ruth, just so happy to have someone helping and giving her attention. Eli, watching closely all that we are doing (he was very cautious and watchful for the first 30 mins or so we were there). Jacob, processing all that he is seeing around him. I was so proud of my boys today with the way they interacted with the kids at this orphanage. The kids here have some very profound and severe physical and mental (probably also emotional) disabilities. I have worked with kids with special needs for years and this scene was still somewhat shocking for me.
But, check this out...
Wheel Chair Races!!!
The kids (both the ones who live there as well as my own) had so much fun racing up and down the hall. All of a sudden, these were just kids. Like any other kid in any part of the world.
I'll leave you with one last image, my favorite from the day. Jacob and his new BFF Ernesto.
After lunch, Jacob pushed Ernesto up and down the long hallway for the rest of the time we were there. They both brought so much joy to the children at Casa de Luz today. I've said it before and I will continue to say, I believe (because I've prayed for it since before they were born) that my boys are world changers.
Soli Deo Gloria,