International (MNN) — Buckner International is looking for Christians
willing to spend one to two months ministering to orphans this summer. Project Go will bring volunteers to needy
children in eight countries: Peru,
Kenya, Russia, Guatemala, Honduras, the Dominican Republic, Mexico, and the
colonias in southern Texas.
"There's nothing more rewarding than being able to sacrifice some of
your time," said Buckner's Analiz Schremmer. "You go overseas, and you see the way that
some of these children live, and it's an extremely eye-opening experience."
For Schremmer, going on an overseas missions trip was one of the most
life-changing things she ever did. She
recalled one particular encounter that impacted her vision for ministering to
orphans. On a mission trip to Vietnam,
she met a little girl whose parents had severely neglected her and allowed her
to be gang-raped multiple times before the government took away custody.
"She was about ten years old and had a lot of hurt," Schremmer
said. "But I was really moved by her
forwardness. While I was
interviewing her, she was sharing her story with me, and then she paused and said, "Is there any way that you could be my mother?"
It grieved Schremmer to know that he could not provide a mother for this
little girl. At that time, Vietnam did
allow children to be adopted by families from the United States.
"But I think that it shows this desperate need of these children to be
loved," she said. "And it's true that we
may not be able to go over there and rescue all the orphans in the world. But sitting down and listening to these children — sometimes through
a translator — can have just an enormous impact."
Giving a child the gift of time and attention can open doors for the Gospel. Schremmer said many of the children that
Buckner cares for look forward to visits from missionaries all year long.
"These children see us going out of our way, loving them, traveling across the world to see them. And this service and this attention just
makes the kids wonder: 'What is it that you have? Why is it that you came here
to love me?'"
The deadline to apply for Project Go is January 21, 2011. Schremmer said people who are interested should
get their applications in soon.
"I would recommend anyone
interested in applying to do so as soon as possible because our
seats are filling up, and our countries are filling up, and we do make these
decisions on a first-come, first-served basis."