Our Costa Rica team heads off to Limon, Costa Rica this Wednesday, March 3rd until Wednesday, March 10th. The neat thing about this team is that the entire team is from Nashville, TN, where our office is located! So this team has gotten to meet weekly and really get to know each other.
Our team members are: 1. Carrie Grace-Congdon 2. Mary Botha 3. Art Wasem 4. Jason Crossman 5. Autumn Kerr - the Team Leader 6. Me :) 7. Tiffany Lankford 8. Tara McWilliams 9. Nikki Dunaway 10.Alicia Jordan
This team will be visiting two orphanages in a part of Costa Rica that is still third world. I know most of you, when you hear Costa Rica, think resorts and vacation, or atleast I do. But honestly, most of Costa Rica is still very much still third world, especially on the Caribbean side of the country.
I have a wonderful friend from high school, Brian Benson, who runs an eco tour business and through this connection, he was able to meet with the government and the respective orphanage directors. He has been living in Costa Rica for years and had never seen the orphanages. He so happy we are investing in these children and is so happy that we opened his eyes to the plight of the orphans there in his beloved country.
These children have never recieved a mission team before. I can't imagine how special they are going to feel when our team arrives. This team is coming with toothbrushes, toothpaste, clothes, school supplies, towels, and bathing suits for each of the kids! They are leaving personalized journals for the older kids as well and a skate board at each orphanage! God has been so present in this team, confirming each team member in His unique and awesome way. This is a great trip for anyone who is going on missions for the first time and our two Summer Costa Rica trips are already almost full!! God so SEES these children. "I will not leave them as orphans...I will come to them!"
Here is the itinerary for the week: Thursday March 4th We get on the road after breakfast and drive to Limon (3.5 hours) where we meet the Director of the Limon PANI orphanages and her partner. We head to the Coco’s orphanage for lunch and spend the afternoon with the children. Dinner is served in the hotel.
Friday March 5th On the road at 8am sharp to commute to Limon ($5 min) and visit another orphanage called Villas del Mar. We spend the entire day (Until 3-4pm) at the Villa orphanage. In the evening we meet up with Barrett, a Christian man who runs a ministry and skateboard park in Puerto Viejo (near-by town 20 min. south of Cahuita). We will have a BBQ cook out dinner at the skate park and enjoy the evening. We head back to the hotel around 8pm as a group.
Saturday March 6th Today will be a beach day with all the children for both orphanages. After breakfast we commute to Limon and spend the day on the beach. Bring your swimsuit, towel and sun block. It is going to be a great day! Dinner is served at the hotel.
Sunday March 7th On the road at 8am to Limon. Today we spend the entire day in the Coco’s orphanage (Until 3-4pm). The late afternoon is free. Dinner is served in the hotel.
Monday March 8th On the road at 8am to Limon. Today we spend the entire day in the Villas del Mar orphanage (Until 3-4pm). After we leave the orphanage, we drive to Puerto Viejo (near-by town 20 min. south of Cahuita) to enjoy the town and have dinner at 7pm. Dinner will be at one of Puerto Viejo’s top restaurants, Loco Natural. We head back to the hotel after dinner as a group.
Tuesday March 9th Free day for the team: rafting or beach and return to San Jose for our farewell dinner in our hotel.
Follow along as I take this mission seriously and minister to the orphans in this world.
Visiting Orphans...It pretty much speaks for itself. Our lives are made to give away to others and I love it that helping orphans is pure and undefiled religion! Follow along as I take God seriously about this mission and minister to the orphans in this world. He is constantly at work in our lives..we just sometimes have to shift our perspective to notice Him. I pray you will hopefully see Him in the words and pictures below..through my perspective.
This blogpage follows the mission trips I lead to minister to orphans in this world. I am the Executive Director of a mission sending agency called Visiting Orphans. (www.visitingorphans.org) I believe my mission in life is similar to the President of Compassion International, Dr. Wes Stafford. In his book, "Too Small to Ignore" he says, "On one side of this international bridge, my role is to minister to the poor, to the orphans, to "comfort the afflicted." And then I cross the bridge, coming back to the Western, more affluent world, where my job is to speak and write and to "affict the comfortable" to call them to action." Loving people on both sides of the spectrum...
I pray that something in my words or pictures will inspire you to reach out beyond yourself...to GO and help the "least of these".