From Poverty to Pastor

Here is another excellent story from Compassion. Some of our sponsored children aspire to be pastors like the one that has helped them in their own Child Development Center. This is true of my sponsored boy in Kenya — Muuo — and I really hope he accomplishes his goal. It’s been on his heart for many years; his brother is a pastor already and now he wants to do the same. Please enjoy this video about a formerly sponsored child that is now a pastor, and who has a huge impact on many children today.

The Least of These

Here is a new video from Compassion featuring four formerly sponsored children.  I met one of them — David — in Colorado Springs last year, and also met Olive earlier.  They’re certainly impressive in what they have already accomplished in their young lives. I’m sure you’ll find their stories to be very moving and powerful in many ways.

Story of Compassion

This video feature Wess Stafford sharing the history of Compassion. How did it all begin? This is a wonderful story!

Meeting Jerica

The most exciting part of our trip to Kenya was meeting our sponsored children.  First, my sweet girl, Jerica.  We had travelled by car for several hours and finally arrived in her village.  I hardly recognized her at first (I thought she was one of the teachers); she was so grown up!  But then we began to talk about some of the letters we’d written to each another, and a bond formed quickly.

2016-07-05-15-44-40_500

Jerica had excelled in every way at the Child Development Center that Compassion provided.  I started sponsoring her when she was a teenager.  I knew she had lost her sponsor for some reason, and wanted to give her the stability of sponsorship, as well as the letters of love and encouragement that I sent regularly.

This is the wonderful smile that first drew me to her initial child packet years ago.

jerica_500

I’m so proud of her.  Through the sponsorship, and through her hard work and determination, by God’s grace, Jerica has been released from poverty in Jesus’ name.  This is the latest photo I had received of her from Compassion.

img_1925

As a teenager, she rose quickly to positions of leadership in her church and project, working with the youth, leading praise and worship, helping the aged and participating in athletic events.  You can see her in front of a wall that has her name (twice) on the “Scroll of Honour!”

2016-07-05-15-43-29_500

She’s in university studies now, which has been part of Compassion’s program for students who qualify; studying education, physics and molecular biology.  Isn’t that amazing?

Here we are with some of the staff members that have been a huge part of her success.  This center ministers to at least 370 children in need; teaching them agricultural skills as well as computer skills, providing meals and immunizations, health care, tutoring and Christian discipleship.  I have nothing but great respect and appreciation for these hardworking, loving individuals!

2016-07-05-15-49-36_500

We had a special time sharing a delicious meal and Jerica’s nephew, Alex, joined us.

2016-07-05-15-07-17_500

2016-07-05-15-49-55_500

We took a few selfies.  2016-07-05-22-05-05_500

2016-07-05-15-00-12_500

Chris and Alex played on the playground equipment.

2016-07-05-15-54-33_500

2016-07-05-15-57-48_500

2016-07-05-22-03-16_500

I took a peek inside the church.

2016-07-05-15-59-12_500

We took tons of photos, of course.

2016-07-12-12-38-09_500

Then we headed for Jerica’s home with the Compassion representative (Paul) that was hosting our visit.  Before meeting Jerica, we had picked up some groceries for her family, which you will see in the following two posts about the memorable home visit with Jerica’s family.

2016-07-05-13-33-09_500

2016-07-05-13-33-12_500

Jimmy

I’ve been sponsoring a girl and boy in Kenya for some time now, and we finally had a chance to visit them this summer.  It was truly an amazing and memorable trip!  One of the bonuses of this excursion was getting to see my dear friend, Jimmy Wambua, again.  He’s a formerly sponsored Compassion child and he graciously invited us to stay in his home in Nairobi.

2016-07-06-06-46-33_500

2016-07-06-06-34-12_500

Jimmy was a member of Compassion’s Leadership Development Program.  After completing high school and college, he attended Moody Bible College as well, and then returned to Kenya to make a difference in many unique ways.  It was a pleasure to see him again and to hear of his dreams for his own people.

2016-07-06-06-38-42_500

Sarah and Chris had fun hanging out with him, too.

2016-07-06-06-40-54_500

We were privileged to taste some real home-cooked, Kenyan food:

2016-07-05-21-31-37_500

As Jimmy talked about his own sponsor, and about becoming an orphan at an early age, I couldn’t help but wonder where he would be today if he hadn’t been given the opportunity to have an education, meals, immunizations and discipleship.  Sponsorship truly changed his life!

Here is a video that tells Jimmy’s powerful story:

Favorite Memories

Here is another great video from some of our Compassion Alumni (formerly sponsored children).  You will share some giggles as you hear some of their favorite memories from their childhood:

Tutors and Mentors

What difference do tutors and mentors make in the life of a sponsored child?  Take a look at this short video.  You’ll be amazed to see what a difference one person (including the sponsor) can make in the life of a child living in poverty.