Quarterly Partner Update-3 Compassion

“And so, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion…” (Colossians 3:12)The word compassion originates from the combination of “com” which means “together, with” and “passion” which means to “suffer”. The Word of God enjoins us to have compassion– to be with and be moved by the need of others.

Compassion extends to many aspects of life. One area that is not often thought of is schooling. Many of our FTC children had little or no schooling opportunity before they came to us. At 15, 16 years old, some are still in 5th and 6th grade. This impacts their life in many ways; from not being allowed to participate in interschool sporting events (due to age), to the embarrassment they feel being four or five years older than their classmates. For the past 3 years, several of our kids have taken an educational placement test at the Department of Education in hopes of being advanced one or more grade levels. It has been a challenge! The first year, they failed. The second year, they almost made it. But this year, with the focused and diligent efforts of their FCA (Frontline Christian Academy) teachers, the four students we registered all passed–up to 5 grade levels of acceleration! There was so much joy (and tears) as the students and teachers celebrated this significant achievement. This is one big step forward in the lives of these students – to have them graduate with their peers and move forward into normal life at an appropriate age. We sincerely acknowledge the great effort by the teachers of FCA and
express our gratitude to them.

Compassion also extends to each person as an individual, and not simply as a group. As we watch our children grow, we see that each one has different, unique strengths and abilities. Mary Grace V., for example, loves to run. At first, we entered her in simple 3K “fun runs”. She would often win, especially if the run was uphill! She then moved on to compete in 10K runs, and on August 25, she bagged first place in the female division in a 10K Uphill Challenge Run! This month she will compete in her first run that includes prizes; the event’s winner will compete at the national level next year. It will be an exciting challenge for her, and a true test of her ability.

In other news… just this past June, we had an outbreak of measles at Face the Children (FTC). Almost every resident was affected. For a time, we had to quarantine the FTC children, which meant that many of our visitors could not spend time with them. It was a disappointment for the teams, as well as the children, who look forward to seeing familiar (and new) faces every summer. The measles outbreak had no more than ended when many of our children and staff began to fall ill to mosquito-borne sicknesses, such as dengue and chikungunya. It was not an easy time as these sicknesses were characterized by fever, rashes, extreme drop in blood platelet count, or severe joint pain. Thankfully, only one of our children had to be admitted to the hospital. She recovered quickly from dengue fever and is now back home and attending school. Thank God; it appears that the season of sickness is now abating. We are relieved, and grateful. 

Great is the faithfulness of God. He continues to manifest His goodness in so many different ways. We continue to be grateful for your ongoing partnership and care. God bless you!

“Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing.” (Ps. 30:11)