A ‘New Dream’ for Bolivia

By October 1, 2008

Bolivia (MNN) — In recent Bolivian news, there has been a large amount of unrest due to President Morales' pledge to rewrite the constitution. Many Christians in the region have expressed their concern that international groups may be banned from the country under Morales' changes. Fortunately, local Christians are there to stay.

Juana grew up in a rural region of Bolivia. Like most Bolivians over twenty, she did not stay in the area but moved to the city where the economy was better. Now, Juana has followed God's prompting to move back and create the New Dream Program.

With the help of Bright Hope International, Juana's vision for this project may very well come true. "I was just mesmerized by the dream she has," said Mark Lennox of Bright Hope. "So I said, ‘What if this became our dream?'"

With other support, Juana has already built a church which 40 of the 200 villagers attend. Now with the help of Bright Hope, she plans to build a care center for orphans and the elderly. She has already been teaching the elderly how to read and write and has been volunteering at the local school. Juana believes that the creation of a church-connected center would help to develop these programs more thoroughly.

According to Lennox, rural Bolivians "basically live off potatoes, and they raise sheep." Juana wants to increase their funds and build up their economy by teaching the villagers to make sheep's wool crafts and exporting them to other areas.

Bright Hope is partnering with Juana by supporting her individually, finding a pastor for the church, creating a feeding center and paying for doctor visits to the town. Bright Hope is excited about this new project because, as Lennox pointed out, "Juana will never be in trouble." There is now little fear that Bright Hope's involvement will end in Bolivia. They could now "continue supporting [Juana] even if missionaries were kicked out of the country," says Lennox.

Christians are continually faced with persecution in Bolivia, and prayer is needed for Juana's and the villagers' safety. "If something happens, you're hours away from somewhere where you can get help or protection," says Lennox. "It's a dangerous situation."

If you'd like to help Juana and Bright Hope in their endeavor to build the New Dream Program, click here . All donations go to support Bright Hope International.

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