When Jesus saw the crowds, He had compassion on them because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd (Matthew 9:36).
Compassion is what compels me to work on behalf of the countless children who live in poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean. I know that same compassion compels you to be a sponsor. Compassion toward these precious children.
A recent study shows that nearly half of the children in Latin America and the Caribbean are affected by poverty.1 They are harassed by their meager circumstances — it’s difficult to live in many of these poor communities — and as they look around they feel helpless and hopeless about their future.
But you and I and ChildHope are making a difference in the lives of the children. We have taken this feeling in our hearts and put our shared compassion to action.
In fact, from the very beginning of this ministry, it’s been individuals like me and you — missionaries, pastors, teachers and sponsors — compelled by compassion to respond to the needs of children born into poverty. It compels us to do all that we can to bring about lasting transformation in the lives of these precious children.
First and foremost, we know that true transformation only comes through the Good News of Jesus Christ. In our ChildHope schools, children encounter the living God and are presented the plan of salvation through faith in Christ. They learn how to trust God with their daily struggles and to trust Him for their future. I love to be in the classroom and hear the children pray. While I am always saddened by the tremendous needs they bring before the throne, I am equally moved and encouraged as I listen to them lift their cares with confidence to their Heavenly Father.
Education is key in equipping these children to be able to pull themselves out of poverty and transform their future. God has created each child — including your sponsored child — with unique talents and gifts that are enhanced through a good quality education. They are given the tools they need to succeed. And these children are able grasp the purpose God has appointed for their lives. They are no longer helpless. They have hope!
Compassion also means we care for the whole child … hot meals, medical care, clean water … and more. It looks different in each school and community, but always responds to the individual needs of the children in our ChildHope schools.
Our values are strong. We have seen them make the difference in our students’ lives for more than five decades. Compassion, education, and transformation are like strands of a strong cord woven through our ministry. And none of it would be possible without you, holding it together. God bless you for being a part of it.
1 The Social Panorama of Latin America 2017 by ECLAC states that poverty affects 46.7% of children and adolescents between the ages of 0 and 14. This is the most recent study by ECLAC.
[From the March 2019 issue of ChildHope’s Compañeros publication.]