Monday, September 28, 2015

Sweet Greetings from Thailand, Haiti, Burkina Faso, Peru and Honduras

I forgot to post last Monday, so there are two Mondays worth of mail this week! :)

Most recently, we got our first letter from Pitchaya in Thailand! 

Pitchaya called me sir, but that’s ok. He says that his family is fine and he was on school vacation. He shared that he was working a part time job to earn some money, which is awesome! He was working at an iron welding shop, and the work was “not too difficult and not too easy.” When university started a new term, he was going back for his second year studying logistics. He was not satisfied with his grades so he asked that we pray for his studies. Pitchaya also responded to my letter about tapirs, saying that he knows what they are and described them in good detail. He said that there aren’t many in Thailand, but they live in a sanctuary. He also said he donated some of his wages from his part time job to the Nongsua District church, which is small but beautiful. He said the children will have a chance to learn more about God there. I’m proud of him for his generous heart! 

Last week we heard from Abdias in Haiti! 

Abdias is such a lovely writer! Abdias says that he is happy to have the privilege to write again, and that he and his family are doing well. He also says that he had a good term at school "in the name of God the omnipotent." He is moving up to 9th grade. He said that he's spent his summer holidays riding biks, playing ball and "many other amusing things." He is also taking sewing classes at the project, and he has learned to sew trousers and shirts. He shared that his family and his church pray for us, and he sings in the choir. He asked that we pray for God to give him strength in all he does. 

We also heard from Carlos in Peru! 

Carlos says that he and his family are doing well and he's very happy to write to me, and to get my letters. He said "thank you for remembering me with your mind and heart" and said he really likes when we send pictures. Carlos said that his country won third place in the "Copa America" tournament, and that everyone celebrated. He asked that we pray for his studies and for his family, and he said goodbye with big hugs! 

We also heard from little Sandier in Honduras! 

Sandier's letter was written by Iris, his tutor, as usual. When I meet Sandier next year, it would be fun to meet Iris, too! :) Iris says that Sandier is doing really well, and of course he has eaten pizza, it is his favorite food and he eats it whenever he can. He said he's never met a brand new baby (he has a little sister but is too young to remember her as a baby) but he would like to take care of a baby! He also listed several holidays in his country, and said he really likes his birthday, mother's day, and independence day. He liked the card and letters we've sent and he asked that we pray for his best friend Ezekiel because he broke his arm. Poor little guy! Sandier also asked that we pray for peace for Honduras. He said goodbye with blessings and hugs, and he drew a pretty picture of mountains with TONS of birds flying over! 

Earlier last week, we heard from Kevenel in Haiti! 

Kevenel had a helper write this letter, but it was written on "big kid" stationery for the first time! His helper at the project said that he was "delighted" to greet us and he wants to know how we are doing. He loves to get our letters and his family is doing well. He said that he has not yet eaten pizza, and he asks that we pray for his protection during his holiday from school. He also said "It's very warm in his country at this moment and the Haitians can't stand it." Sounds like everyone had a hot summer! Kevenel said not much is going on where he lives and he wants to know if I've ever been in a canoe. :)  

We also got a letter from Barry in Burkina Faso! 

Barry's letter was also written on big kid stationery! He said that he is glad to get our letters and he and his family are in good health. He said that the schools are closed or a few months because of the summer holidays, and he likes going to farms and helping his parents. He said thank you for praying for him and his family, and they are also praying for us. He also shared that he moved up a grade, and he is really happy about that! He asked us to pray for him so he can fear the Lord, and he asked if I have been to a farm. At the bottom of the letter, Barry drew many little pencil drawings, including a shopping bag, a house, a faucet, a person, a truck, a bowl, a soccer ball, a bike, and some other random things! 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Sweet Greetings from Ecuador, Honduras, India, Thailand and the Philippines

Happy Mail Call Monday!

A few more letters rolled in this week! The first we received was our first letter from Mary Paola in Ecuador! 

Mary P says it's an "honor" for her to send me letters, and she says she's doing very well with her family. She is also very happy in school. She wants to know if there are lots of trees where we live, and told me there are lots of trees and "rich flora" where she lives. She asks that we pray for her studies so she can continue to do a good job, and she wishes us success and she will always be praying for us. On the back page, she drew a really nice scene with trees, mountains, and birds! I am looking forward to hearing more about Mary P's jungle home. I also noticed that she has really nice handwriting, that looks a bit like my own! 

Next up, a letter from Thanakan in Thailand!

Thanakan is such a sweetheart. I was so happy to hear from her! She wrote a form letter about her family. She doesn't list any siblings in the space provided and says she lives in the mountainous region. She likes to help her family by cooking and cleaning, and her family has a Christian background! Thanakan had help writing her letter, because she's still pretty small. Her helper said she wants to hear from me often! She asked how our family is doing and said that she is living with her older sister right now because her dad had an accident and lost his leg. :( So her dad and mom are staying in another village. I hope that they are reunited soon. I am thinking about doing an inquiry as to why exactly she can't be with her parents right now, but I am assuming that they are just staying closer to the hospital or a rehabilitation center. Regardless, I am going to try to send a small family gift to Thanakan soon, so she can maybe use it to buy food for her family while her parents are away. The project helper was sure to tell me that Thanakan is a very good girl, and she is always thinking of me! She also drew a very pretty picture of a river with some flowers.

Next was a letter from Amisha in India!

It was so good to see a letter from Amisha- we haven't heard from her often and her first two letters were written by project staff, in English. This one appeared to be written by Amisha herself, in her native language! Amisha's letter was a form letter about the future. She said that in the future, she wants to learn about computers, and she wants to dance or sing or act. She wants to be a teacher when she grows up, and she wants her community to be alcohol-free. And she called me Aunty!!! Yay!!! I have been waiting forever for an Indian sponsor daughter to call me Aunty. :) I love it. It's so cute. She said that she and her family are fine, and she hopes that uncle Brandon and I are fine, too. She sends her love regards to my whole family, and the people in her village recently celebrated Ramadan. She wanted me to know that her favorite pet is  cat, and there are lots of kinds of people who live in her community and she will tell me more about them in her next letter- but in this letter she did say that when Christian couples get betrothed they exchange rings and a "wedding string." Which sounds fun. She says she is praying for us every day! :) 

We also heard from Eduardo in Honduras! 

Eduardo says that he and his family are doing really well. He shared that his favorite months are May and December because those are "very beautiful days for me and for my family." He asked about my favorite month, and said baby Lilly is "so beautiful" and he is praying for her and wants to know how she is doing now. He also said that where he lives, it is so hot they can barely stand it, and he remembered from one of my letters that it is cold where I live. Not anymore, buddy! :) He said goodbye with much love. 

Lastly, we got a very exciting letter from Merlyn in the Philippines! 

Merlyn's letter addressed the family gift we crowd-funded for her back in February, because her family lost many belongings in Typhoon Ruby. Merlyn shared that with the gift, she and her mom got rice, groceries, shoes, new clothes, a backpack for school school uniforms, a grooming kit, school supplies- and ice cream! She said they were so happy! Merlyn also asked how Brother Brandon is and what he is up to now, and she said "Thank you very much for not getting tired in writing me. I'm happy every tie I received a letter from you." She also agrees that baby Lilly is so cute, and she is praying for her health! Merlyn said "sister Jessi, my prayer for you is may God keep you and may you have peace. Please also pray me to Jesus to keep me and guide me in going to school and going back home." She also promised to take care of all the new stuff she got. And I got pictures of her and her mom with their gifts! :) :) :) 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Sweet Greetings from Ghana, Uganda, India, Honduras, Indonesia, Burkina Faso, Haiti and Mexico

Happy Mail Call Monday, two days late!

It was a crazy weekend! We went out of town, and then there was the holiday, and then I started a new job this week! So here are the letters we received last week. :)

We heard from Angelina in Ghana!

Angelina shared that at the project, they've been learning about who to trust, and making wise friendships. She asked about my favorite game to play at home, and said that she prays God gives us good health! 

Next, we heard from Caleb in Uganda! 

This was the first letter I've received from Caleb that didn't mention his family's crops of maize and beans! Caleb said he's glad that we like to visit the zoo, and asked about my favorite animal there. He said that his favorite animal is the lion, as it has a big head and a small tail- and he said that this was good planning on God's part, because the lion uses its big head to slay people! Wow! He also said thank you for loving him and writing him letters, and his prayer is that God will give me the wisdom to always write to him, and that he will always write to me! 

Then we heard from Benji in Haiti!

Benji said that his family enjoys celebrating Easter because it is a time of grace! He thanked us for the letters and asked that we pray for his health, and then wished us "good night." :) 

Next, we got a letter from Jayid in India! 

As usual, Jayid's letter was written by a project worker! Jayid's helper at the project said that he's been learning lots of new action songs at the project, and he likes to listen to the guitar! They also said that the kids have been taking self defense classes! What a fun skill to develop. Jayid asked that we continue to pray for his dad's health (he has TB.) 

Then we got a letter from Anahi in Honduras!

I love the fact that Anahi's letters are always written by her mom! Anahi's letter was a form letter about her medical check-up (she's doing well and is quite tall!) and she also said that she is getting really good at reading and writing. Her mom, Celina, wrote that they were so happy to write to me "on this hot afternoon," and that their family prays for prosperity for my family! She said "I greet you on behalf of my daughter. We thank you for your sponsoring; those are the most sincerely wishes from our heart. I wish that you are well. We thank God for your life. I write you this letter, on this hot afternoon, with love and affection." I really hope that Anahi's mom can come along on our visit day when I go to Honduras next year!!! 

Next was a letter from Reine in Burkina Faso! 

Reine shared that she passed her exams, and she was happy to learn about the new babies in the lives of our friends and family! She asked if we want to be parents someday, too! She also shared that she liked seeing the pictures we've been sending, and said that her name means "princess," but she doesn't know the reason why her parents chose it for her! What a pretty meaning for her name! 

Then we got a letter from Tasya in Indonesia! 

Tasya said that her family is doing really well! She said that her group didn't win their singing competition, but they had fun. And she also watched the drama competition and enjoyed that as well! Tasya responded to some of my questions about animals, saying she has never seen a tapir before, and her favorite animal is the dog, because they are the cutest! She listed several specific family members and friends of ours that she is praying for, and asked that we pray for her exams!
Finally, we heard from Brendita in Mexico!

Brendita sent a form letter about her family! She said she spends most of her time with her parents and grandmother, and she helps her family by watching after her little sibling. She asked that we pray for her brother and thanked us again for the toys we were able to send her over a year ago! I'm so glad that she enjoys playing with them!! 

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Compassion Joys: August

It's everybody's favorite time of the month- Compassion Joys time!

 Compassion Family

We have so very many things to be thankful for this month!


This month we received a CRAZY amount of letters!! It was bananas! We heard from India (Jayid, Vandana), Ethiopia (Tamirat, Melat), Honduras (Eduardo, Anahi), Burkina Faso (Reine), Indonesia (Tasya), Mexico (Brenda), Kenya (Mary, Victor, Mercy, Austin, Christine, Celestine, Fatuma, Gloria, Motempa, Nkoyio, Emmanuel, Purity, Rose), Tanzania (Elifagason, Elisha), Ghana (Angelina), Brazil (Kaue, Patricia), El Salvador (Cristobal), Haiti (Marc, Benji), Bolivia (Juan, Rayza), Peru (Mishel), the Philippines (Mjay), Sri Lanka (Sithum), and Colombia (Julian, Michel.) A bunch of those were first letters, Patricia's came with an extra picture, and some of the kids sent more than one letter! :)


Only three birthdays this month! Caleb in Uganda turned 14, Pitchaya in Thailand turned 20, and Yese in Tanzania turned 15! Happy birthday, gentlemen!

Photo Updates!

Abdias in Haiti got his photo updated this month! He's a handsome young man!

New Kids!

Four new correspondence kids joined our family this month! Tiny Alaiza in the Philippines, sweet Amelia in Kenya, stoic Mawoussi in Togo, and strong Ruby in Ghana!

I also have something fun to share- my friend Stephanie and I began sponsoring beautiful Maribel in Bolivia together! Hannah was advocating for Maribel for a while before we made this decision- every time I saw her, I thought "ohhh, I want her." Steph and I had been talking about sharing a sponsorship, since we really can't afford a full one on our own, so we decided on Maribel! We love her so much! 

Special Events!

This month I hosed my Compassion Christmas party! You can read more about it here. 


I am officially going to Honduras next fall! I set up my fundraiser page so folks can follow along with my goals. It may seem like a long way off, but I am going to need all that time to raise the money! Please be praying for my fundraising efforts- the next big thing coming up is a bake sale September 19!