Manna 4 Lempira just opened a new program this month in a community called Quelacasque. A church wanted to partner with the Manna program, and its members sponsored many of the children, but there were still quite a few available for sponsorship. When the photos and profiles of the kids were posted, I had to look. I love to learn about each kid and pray that they all find the right sponsor. I wasn’t necessarily looking to add another child. But of course, the children were so lovable. Then I thought, if there was one that moved me, and he/she was still available after a few days, I’d consider it.
A little over a year ago, I lost my grandmother that I was very close to. And a little more than a year before that, I lost my grandfather, her husband. In January, I sponsored Oxford through Compassion in honor of my grandmother. They share the same birthday and I knew she would have loved his huge smile. Since then, I’ve been looking for a child to sponsor in honor of my grandfather. Every so often I’d look through children available for sponsorship with the same birthday of him, but although the children were wonderful, I never felt that “click” moment with any of them to know that they were right child.
When looking through the Quelacasque children, I noticed that Jenny had a birthday one day after my grandfather’s. I loved her shy, sweet smile. I loved that she wants to be a doctor when she grows up. But what really made the difference was when I saw she had 8 siblings and a single mother. I have a special place in my heart for children from large families, and four of my other Manna children also have many siblings. Imagine as a parent in the US living in financial stability and having 9 children. That seems hard enough, but now imagine it in poverty. I love to be able to make children from large families feel special and singled out. I love to send them things that are just for them and not hand-me-downs. And I can’t wait to do these things for Jenny.
So guess what? I didn’t end up waiting a couple days. I barely made it a couple hours after I got home from work on the first day that the children were available for sponsorship. I was happy to know that Jenny was still available and to hear the news that I was able to sponsor her gave me a feeling of peace, knowing that after many months, I finally had the child who was meant to be sponsored in honor of my grandfather. I can’t wait to share some of this story with her either.