Latinos: Taking the Gospel to Guatemala

05.14.18 | Heartbeat, Global, Latinos | by Pablo Cachon

Latinos: Taking the Gospel to Guatemala

    Many people in Guatemala struggle with poverty and challenging social issues. Tragically, the country ranks among the worst for violence against women and girls. The Kids Alive organization is making a difference through ministry to victims of sexual and physical abuse and neglect. For the past 15 years, New Hope Church has sent a team to encourage and support those living at Oasis, the Kids Alive residential home. This place is a safe haven for girls who often arrive with the deep scars of exploitation.

    This past March, Dennis Silva was among the NHC Guatemala team members. She recently shared some of her experience as a first-time participant from Latino Ministries. 

    An Interview with Dennis Silva

    What was the purpose of the Guatemala trip?
    Girls at the Oasis home have been abandoned by their parents or sexually abused. One of the purposes of our team was to spend time with them and carry out improvement and construction work.

    What was your experience in being part of the team?
    It’s incredible to know this place truly lives up to its name, “Oasis.” I saw how these girls had transformed even after such abuse to their integrity, dignity, body and soul. It’s wonderful how God works through the ministry workers, psychologists, teachers, aunts, cooks and each of the people who surround them. They’re shown how much God loves them and taught how valuable they are to Him. Many grow to be brave women who learn to forgive and face legal situations due to the abuses they received. The girls learn how to smile again as they play, dream and live! All this is only done by God. I am grateful for this wonderful opportunity.

    One of the things I admire about these young girls is the way they forgive in spite of the pain caused by their parents, relatives and others. They forgive and pray for them to know God.

    How did you see Christ’s love made known?
    The team attended a church where we were welcomed and helped to feel the great love of God. The church has a mission that’s far from the city and has very little resources, but it has 300 members. As I listened to the pastors’ testimonies, I recognized their trust in God. They serve despite the hard trials. There is certainty that everything is in His hands. I was able to witness the omnipresence of our God.

    What new perspective did you gain?
    The first one is that I want to return next year. I want to see those faces and smiles that captivated me. I love them with all my heart. One of the things I admire about these young girls is the way they forgive in spite of the pain caused by their parents, relatives and others. They forgive and pray for them to know God. Sometimes, as adults, it’s difficult for us to forgive or we justify not doing it. I want to put what I learned from the girls into practice in my own life. I want to remember that God has already forgiven and restored my past. My future belongs to Him.

    Why should others consider serving in Guatemala?
    God asks us to share with others, to help and love one another. I thought I had nothing to give. However, on the last day after playing, talking and eating with one girl, she said “I love you very much. I wish you had been my mom.” God showed me that it does not take much to give or to serve, only to give your heart with humility and love.

    Pastor Pablo Cachon
    Pastor Pablo Cachon leads Latino Ministries at New Hope Church. "It is an honor to serve, encourage and empower the Church, so that it may fulfill its purpose, thus glorifying God across the street and around the world."