Today, I’m continuing my series of posts relating to my recent trip to Ecuador. For previous posts, click here.
During our second day in Riobamba we visited Child Development Center EC420, a center with an active Child Survival Program. For more on this program, and our time at the center, click here.
After spending some time with the mothers and their children, we again broke into our smaller groups and headed to the home visits. For me, that meant climbing into the back of a pick-up truck for a quick, maybe 5 minute, ride up the mountain to the home of Luisa and her amazing family.
We had been warned before visiting that this would be an especially difficult part of the trip. After the urging of Compassion staff, Luisa had, only 7 days before, left her abusive husband and moved in to a small building on her mother’s property. She had been beaten severely, and still had some bruising on her face.But, do you know what I found in her house? Not fear, not shame, not regret – joy. Sublime joy. She was getting help for her children. She had a roof over her head and people that loved her. She welcomed us with open arms, thankful to be able to share her story with us.
She showed us the progress her baby was making, while we admired her two-room home. She had no running water, no cook-top, and only 1 bed. But she had such joy.Clearly God was with her. Her baby boy was thriving in his environment, but emotionally was missing his father. Luisa asked that we pray for her children as they adjust to the transition into a safer environment. Our small group did indeed pray for Luisa and her family, and we left her with a large bag of groceries, words of encouragement, and a true time of fellowship. I will not soon forget our time together. Afterward, we all gathered outside the humble home for a group photo. Side note: Luisa’s niece is an absolute doll & loved posing for photos.
Luisa’s baby boy decided to wake up for the photos, too. Isn’t he precious! Look how happy they are – such joy, such joy.
This was a great way to spend our last full day in Riobamba. Tomorrow we would begin the long drive back to Quito & our own sponsored kids!