We are very excited about the opportunity to start a kid’s club on Sunday afternoons at the orphanage. We approached a young woman by the name of Rut, to help lead the kids club. I met Rut in 2009 on a short term mission trip to Peru, and have often thought about her and prayed for her over the years. She is just one of those people you can’t get out of your mind. When I told her what we wanted to do at the orphanage her response was,” When do we start?” So together we translated the Bible study I wanted to begin with, and gathered some music and crafts. The week following, she invited us to her church to a kid’s celebration. What we saw confirmed that she was the right person for the job. The format for the day was exactly what we had envisioned for the orphanage. Our first kids club is the Sunday after Easter. Please pray that it is successful and the children are receptive to the teachings of Christ.
Also, I was finally approved to enter the women’s prison in Jauja Peru. It took nearly three months, but I’m in. I must say your patience is definitely tested when you are on the mission field. This prison is about an hour ride from our home, and we have to change vehicles several times along the way. It would take half the time if we had a vehicle, but again, I am learning to have more and more patience. The facility was not what I expected. There are two big rooms that sleep about forty women each, and a “courtyard” area in which the women hang laundry, knit, and visit with each other. This is also where we gather for the weekly Bible study. About fifteen women attend the class each week. Their ages range from early twenties to sixties. They are very attentive, and some have the courage to ask questions. My first week there two of the women said they did not want to go back to their old lives and that they wanted to leave the prison as changed women living for Christ. What a blessing it was to hear them say that! The Bible studies are very basic and repetitive. I have been told it is because of such an abundant lack of education that things need to be repeated in several different ways several times. Again it takes a lot of patience.
I also learned that two of the women in this group have children at the orphanage where we are working. Both of these boys, ages three and four, were in the prison with their mother until the age of three and are now at the orphanage with us. I have not mentioned to the mothers that I know their children, but when the time is right I will let them know that they are doing well. It is kind of bittersweet knowing the mothers of these two boys. Part of me is sad to see such young children separated from their mothers and yet part of me is hopeful that these women will allow the Lord to work in their lives so that when they leave the prison they will be good examples for their children. I ask that you keep the women in this Bible study in your prayers.