<p>Along with my friends Yanett and Pastora Mili from Biblica de Fe church, we drove an hour and a half outside of Lima to La Sagrada Familia. It is <strong><span style=”FONT-SIZE: 14px; FONT-FAMILY: “><span style=”FONT-SIZE: 15px; FONT-FAMILY: “><span style=”FONT-SIZE: 15px; COLOR: #6000bf; FONT-FAMILY: “>HOME</span></span></span></strong> to 750 children ranging in age from birth to 18. This orphanage is supported by donations from around the world and there are volunteers that do come and help on a long term basis. They are always in need of food and supplies even with the donations they receive. It never seems to be quite enough. Then again when is enough enough?</p>
<p>We had loaded two cars full of clothing and other things that the members of the church had donated along with the food Yanett and I had bought the day before. The trunks, back seats, floorboards,our laps, every place was filled with something. In our car, wedged between the backseat and the space between Yanett driving and Mili in the passenger seat there was a baby´s mattress! Yes you read correctly!! A mattress.</p>
<p>We were let in through the gates of the orphanage and parked our cars. There were older children that helped us unload everything in what seemed like just a matter of seconds. All of the items put in a pile outside of the area where they would sort through it and distribute where need be. And it struck me…what seemed like so much in the cars and so much in the carts while we were shopping at the grocery store looked so small when put all together in the pile. What I thought might make a dent…yeah well.. not so much. The food we brought might last a day but not much more. Not when you are feeding 750 children. In silence I let my thoughts go for awhile and finally felt a peace that at least, AT THE VERY LEAST, it was a start. One small step at a time. One step forward.</p>
<p>The kids welcomed us with wide open arms, huge hugs and kisses. They had just come from eating lunch and were headed back to classes. Child after child randomly came up and welcomed us in this manner. Talk about overwhelming. And it started. Just their sweet simple gestures of friendliness continued the breaking of my heart. They had smiles on their faces but the vacant look in some of their eyes was piercing. I tried to capture it with pictures. I tried to capture it in my mind´s eye and for now it is impossible. Perhaps because I have nothing as dramatic as that to draw on from my past. Seeing so many children without parents all in one place. But, now I am getting a glimpse and it is not pretty, of what breaks God's heart. The living conditions must change for the children. They need HOPE and support. They need to be loved on and left with feeling that they are very special and will be remembered. </p>
<p>As we left the orphanage and drove through the poor area and run down shacks that lined the dusty road outside La Sagrada Familia, I saw those kids in front of their homes and on the street and for a moment I felt as though the kids at the orphanage might just have a better chance at life. Those children of the orphange have warm clothes, meals every day and education. How ironic is all of that? They have no parents or family to care for them and yet have it &quot;better&quot; than those children that have a &quot;family and home&quot; to call their own. A bit difficult to swallow the picture when viewed in person. When it gets up-close and &quot;personal.&quot;</p>
<p>More to follow about the children under the age of 2 that we had the chance to play with, hug and love on for a little while. But for now I still cant wrap my head around it well enough to convey the thoughts and feelings. And I need pictures. When I return I will post them. Seems technology and my camera are not in sync here so we wait…</p>
<p>Breaking under His Mighty Grip,</p>
<p>Stephanie </p>
<p><a href=”http://www.TrinitysAngels.org”>www.TrinitysAngels.org</a></p&gt;