“It is hard to know how to express the thoughts that ran through my mind as I attended the Cancer Redemption Project church dedication. Seeing the campus with all the buildings complete, feeling the children’s arms around me again, interacting with the LSM staff who on a daily basis carry out the mission of serving vulnerable children. Feeling so blessed that God allowed our family to be part of His amazing work in Haiti.” – Jenny Bertsch
There are times when a single moment changes everything. For Yemi*, that moment came at far too young an age – the day she found out she was pregnant. As the youngest daughter in a large family, her parents struggled to provide for everyone, and as she sat there with her hands in her face, she thought: “How will I ever provide for this child? I’m not ready to be a mother.”
It doesn’t take long to find someone around us with a need. And if you watch five minutes of the news, you’ll catch a glimpse of the world around us that is in the midst of war, economic distress and pain.
But what if we could band together and do something about it? What if groups of women across the U.S. could directly impact a piece of those problems? Through our Ethiopian Purse Parties, women are gathering in homes and larger venues and doing just that.
Here’s what they’re saying about it:
We’ve got a great team in Haiti this week who’s experiencing many things, pitching in on some projects at the Ranch and visiting some of our families. These guys have been busy! But honestly, it’s more than picking up a hammer and working on some projects – as valuable as that is.
“I just can’t seem to get ahead. I have to feed my children. I don’t know what to do.”
Those were the tearful words I heard from the cracked lips of a desperate woman as I stood in her cave-of-a-dwelling, an tiny upstairs room with dung walls and a tarp roof. It wouldn’t hold out the rains with the rainy season. The one room was barely big enough to hold the mattress Betti* shared with her three children. As I’d pulled myself up the narrow ladder through the open hole to the room above, I wondered how many times her baby had almost crawled over and fell through.
It is life’s greatest privilege to see people who were once vulnerable and hopeless find meaning and purpose. We believe this is only completely possible through the power of Jesus Christ in a life, and with each program and project we start, LSM’s heart is to tap into a person’s greatest potential.
In Ethiopia, we’ve found this to be true of each mother who has found herself desperate to provide for her children. Vulnerability leads to exploitation – and a generational cycle of hopelessness. But if a woman can find hope in something else and discover that she is capable of providing for her family with dignity, something powerful changes. Through extensive counselling, discipleship and vocational training, we’ve seen hundreds of women and children leave the streets and start new lives, reaching for their greatest potential.
There always seems to be a lot going on at LSM. Our staff puts in great effort to maintain day-to-day operations, grow our programs and dream of new and exciting ways we can further change children’s lives. This week is no exception. Here’s just a hint of some exciting things happening in Haiti this week:
This week, we welcome 24 children home.
24 vulnerable children who have been abused, rejected, abandoned, orphaned and forgotten are going to walk into a Home of Hope and leave those words and that identity of hopelessness behind. Because in this home, they are going to hear different words from their new mom and dad: words like acceptance, love, family, hope… future.
This Sunday (November 2) is a globally recognized day for one very special reason: the orphan.
Where it all started:
A local pastor in a poor rural village in Zambia asked his struggling members to joyfully give to care for the orphans in their community. That day, an visiting American watched as those people gave what they could – a little money, a bit of food, even their own shoes. That day not only changed that American’s life, but would transform many more to come.
We’ve got a big day on Friday in Central IL and we need you to join us in praying! Our Annual Benefit Auction in IL helps provide necessary funding so we can continue to rescue vulnerable children worldwide.