I thought 12 kids to pack for was a lot… but then it turned into 13. Helen has been waiting for a sponsor through Manna 4 Lempira for a few months. I remembered her from her photos even before she needed a photo, and loved her joyful smile. I’d been watching and praying, hoping she’d find somebody soon. I actually figured if I sponsored a 13th child, it would be during or shortly after the trip.
But then, there was a post featuring Helen on the Manna page, and I kept thinking about her. I figured she’d be sponsored right away though. But she wasn’t, and the following day there was another post, this one with more detail, all of which described everything I adore in a child.
“Spunky Helen is a delight. She is a 100% at whatever she does. She is a hilarious mix of wild child and sweetheart, and you never know exactly what to expect. Her smile can light up a room, and giggles are never far from her lips. If you hope to sponsor a perfectly obedient child, well, Helen may not be the child for you—but if you hope to sponsor a child who is hungry to receive love and affection and then return it tenfold, Helen is your girl!”
Now, all of this was going on while I was out of state and very distracted and busy, but I still could not stop thinking about Helen. I told myself after a certain time, if she wasn’t sponsored, I’d ask about her. I ended up waiting even an hour or two after that. The rest unfolded in only a way that could have been meant to be, and now Helen is my newest sponsored child. I’m thrilled to be visiting her and loving on her!
I can’t wait to hear that giggle in person. And this last picture is when she was told I’d be visiting next week!
I’m pinching myself that in just 4 days, I’m going to be arriving in Honduras!! This is a trip that I’ve been dreaming of for 2 years, and I can’t believe it’s actually happening and that I’m going to be meeting so many of my sponsored kiddos that I love so much. I’ve developed so much love and respect for the Manna 4 Lempira and Sowers 4 Pastors ministries over the past couple years, that to get to see them in action is going to be amazing. The first team is there now, and I’ve gotten some glimpses through photos! Some of them will be staying for the second week, which I’ll be arriving for with a few others, and some of them will be going home.
I’ve realized that I’m behind in posting my Manna letters, though, so in these final days leading up to my trip, I’m going to be sharing the letters I’ve received from the last 2 mailings from my kiddos. Today I’ll be sharing the letters from my children from the Mercedes church, starting with Brayan.
Brayan is 5
“Hello Dear Sponsor! How are you? I hope that you are well. I am very happy because next year I am going to my first year of classes. I will be going to kindergarten. I want to know more about you. It is almost Christmas. I hope to have a good one with my family and friends. I hope that you also have a great Christmas full of blessings. Many hugs for you. A greeting through the long distance. Thanks for everything. We have prayed for you and all the world. Feliz Navidad y Prospero Año Nuevo!”
“Holy Week is important because we spend time with family, friends, and neighbors. On vacations my family likes to go to church and to swim. Typical Easter food is fish and honey. Traditions in my country are Independence Day and Indian Day. My favorite part of the feast is the sea. I am very important for me and my family. I am a treasure of God.”
This last letter did not come translated and google was very little help. I know basic Spanish, but certainly not enough to translate this. The Manna team was very busy getting ready for their trip so I didn’t want to bother them at the time. So this is what I have for now. I’ll update it when I have a better translation…
“For my Sponsor Alisa, From Brayan, I hope you have enjoyed a Holy Week with your family- me and my father went to bapario I felt very happy in my bacasiones. We meet with my fighters (?). I hope you are well and I start my classes again. I have 3 very lottery (?) pets. One sema pingui, the other was called Rok, and the other sema Cosita. I hope to write you again. God bless you, those who surround you, many blessings. Much love and affection and hugs. Brayan”
15 days until I arrive in Honduras with Manna 4 Lempira! It’s exciting how close it is! I leave tomorrow for another trip, and then when I get back I get to start packing to go see these awesome kids. I hope everything fits!
Heidy, 12, was my first sponsored Manna child, so she’s very special to me. In the over 2 years that I’ve sponsored her, I’ve watched her grow and blossom into a more confident young lady. She still has the kindest heart. In both of these pictures, which were taken on separate days, she is wearing a dress I sent her.
Junior, 10, has never stopped smiling in the 2 years I’ve “known” him. He is such a joyful personality and I can’t wait to see it in person! He is looking so much more grown up in these latest photos.
Diego, 6, is the one out of all of my Manna children that I’ve seen the least photos of and gotten the least letters from. I’m hoping getting to meet him and his family in person will strengthen their attendance at church and the program. I didn’t receive a photo of him this time.
Jenny, 8, is my only Quelacasque child. I won’t be there for the church visit and fun day for Quelacasque, unfortunately, but thankfully she still will get to join along on one of the other fun days so that we still get to meet each other. I haven’t sponsored her for very long, yet, but sometimes she looks like she bears a burden. I’m so happy to see her big smile here!
We recently received new photos of our Manna 4 Lempira children receiving the letters we sent them and new Bibles. I’m going to break them down by church, starting with Mercedes. It’s hard to believe that in just 29 days, I’ll be arriving in Honduras and seeing these children very soon! I still have some more shopping and lots of packing to do, but I’m so excited to meet them and spend time with them in person!
Brayan, 5, usually always has the same serious face in all of his photos (except one). But this time he attempted a smile! 🙂 He’s also wearing a shirt I sent him, which is very big, but at least he’ll grow into it.
Ludvi, 9, seems to be wise beyond her years and I love the peaceful look on her face with the natural background outside.
Velery, 3, has her hair is blowing across her face, but she has the most adorable curly hair. I have a feeling she’s going to be a big personality.
Angie, 3, is my newest Manna child. The Mercedes fun day is definitely going to be my busiest day with 3 little ones!
Deciding between two sponsorship trips is a very difficult task, because it’s like choosing between your children. To have to say no to some, even if they won’t know it, feels awful. That’s why it took me so long to decide between going with Compassion to El Salvador or with Manna 4 Lempira to Honduras this summer. In addition, because they’re two different organizations, there were other factors, like the fact that I’ve traveled with Compassion before and know what to expect, or the fact that the Honduras trip is a little longer and a little less money. After a lot of praying, weighing pros and cons, and asking some questions about the Honduras trip, I was leaning strongly in that direction. Then, last week, I received the sign I had been praying for all along. In circumstances that only God could have orchestrated, the opportunity to add little Angie to my Honduran sponsored family arose.
I knew it was God saying that I needed to go there and meet her… along with my 11 other Manna children in Honduras. To be able to meet so many of the children I love so much and have dreamt about giving hugs to in person is an excitement that’s hard to even describe! I’m praying that everything continues to work out and that it will soon be official that I will be traveling to rural Honduras in June!