In less than 2 weeks a group of people came together and raised $18,000 to pay off the academy! And we just finished the 2nd week of classes! Words can’t describe it.
On Monday morning, two weeks ago, Pastor Luis Cos, my family and our team prayed over the entire building. We went to each classroom, the cafeteria, the kitchen…we prayed over every corner. We prayed that G-d would be sought after and honored. We prayed the boys would grow in their faith. We prayed boys would become men of G-d.
We broke bread together and then, at 12:30pm, the boys started showing up! They ran in and out of classrooms, in and out of the courtyard. They were laughing and screaming and buzzing. (I’m smiling to myself as I remember the day)
We gave the boys a tour of the building starting with the rooftop! I pointed to the courtyard below, “We’ll be planting grass there soon.”
“Will we be able to walk on it?”
“And sit on it?”
“YES! Of course!”
And from the rooftop I pointed to an open field, “We’ll be planting grass there too. That’s where you’ll be able to play fútbol.”
They all looked at each other in disbelief. I don’t think any of them have ever played soccer on grass. It’s either concrete or dirt fields. Goals are either rocks or plastic bottles and they always argue about one of the goals being wider than the other. Always. Haha.
We walked down to the kitchen and then the dining/multipurpose room. We have two sliding doors so there’s a ton of light!
And then I showed them the bathroom. I know, I know, “You showed them the bathroom???”
There isn’t a boy that I know of at the academy who has an indoor bathroom. I had to teach each group of boys how and when to flush. “Always wash your hands!” Most bathrooms are a hole in the ground with a concrete stool. Nothing to flush. They’re a huge health hazard.
The boys finally settled into the classroom, we prayed over lunch and began the day. Lots of laughing, getting up from their seats to check the place out; it was like 25 boys on a sugar high, minus the sugar!
With the new building, we have a new name! We are now The El Rosario Christian Academy For Boys.
Our former ministry partners are focusing on other projects in El Rosario and now, instead of teaching just 3rd and 4th graders, I also teach 5th and 6th graders! We have 76 boys at the academy!
I think I’m most surprised at how much I love teaching the older boys. The 3rd and 4th graders are so dang cute but the 5th and 6th graders ARE SO DANG HUNGRY! They can’t get enough bible and English!
The boys get to the academy at about 12:30/12:45, have lunch and then study until about 3:30/4:00. And then they do their homework. That’s after a full day at public school!
This building, this academy, it’s an oasis in the middle of a desert. For about 4 hours a day, the boys get to be boys without the very real pressures of life and poverty that surrounds them. They get to eat. They get to learn. And they get to be loved.
Take a second and breathe that in. Our Lord is pouring His love all over this community. And you and I get to be a part of that.
Vonda and I couldn’t have done any of this WITHOUT YOU. We couldn’t have raised the $18,000 to move in and we couldn’t have purchased the land the academy sits on. We can’t feed the boys every day and we can’t put food on our own table , WITHOUT YOU.
If you have prayed for us, prayed for El Rosario, fed us or fed someone we love here, soak in this update. YOU did this. We are so proud and humbled to be partnered with you. Thank you.