Guatemala (MNN) — Kids in Guatemala get to celebrate Christmas a little early this year with Christmas parties hosted by an Orphan Outreach mission team.
The team members with Orphan Outreach arrived in Guatemala City last Saturday, December 15, and have spent the week visiting villages all over the country to put on these Christmas parties.
According to Tiffany Taylor with Orphan Outreach, “Already they have seen just some amazing things happen. They spent the [first] two days in some villages near Lake Atitlan where they had 350 children show up, and many of them were hearing the Gospel for the first time. So it’s just been a really exciting time for them to pass out Christmas gifts, but mostly share the joy of Christ.”
Kids at these Christmas parties get to sing Christmas songs with the team, take turns at bursting piñatas filled with candy, open Christmas gifts, eat a meal, and hear the Christmas story of the Gospel.
But for these kids, it’s more than just another fun party. Over half of Guatemala’s population lives on less than a dollar a day, and one in every five children under five years old are malnourished.
“Their lives are full of many hardships, and these parties are just a huge blessing to these children,” says Taylor.
One of the stops for the team was at the Down Syndrome School in Guatemala City. There they ministered to 45 orphaned or impoverished children with Down syndrome. Each child received a new quilt, a new beanie baby, and other gifts.
“Children with this condition would normally be shunned and hidden away,” says Taylor. “But [this school] puts a big spotlight on them. They’re learning, they’re doing crafts, and this school is part of a church. So I know that they had just a magical time with them, just being able to love on those children.”
As the team travels back at the end of this week, please pray that seeds for the Gospel of Christ which were planted in the hearts of the kids in Guatemala will take root and grow deeply.
To sponsor a child in Guatemala through Orphan Outreach for $36 per month, click here.