Adrian grew up in the Lima Children’s Home, and now as an adult, works for Kids Alive in Peru as an administrative assistant. Last year, we asked Adrian if he would accompany and contribute to a team from the US that was visiting the Andahuaylas Friends of Peru Children’s Home. It was a wonderful experience for him, and he has gone back a second time with another team, so we asked him if he would write this post on his experiences there. We hope you enjoy reading his unique perspective!
When I was invited to visit the Kids Alive Children’s Home in Andahuaylas, I thought it might be a good time, I’d have some fun and at the very least see the mountain region of Peru, which I had never visited before. However, I was completely wrong. It was much more.
I remember that when we landed, I was fascinated by the landscape, the weather, and the warmth of the people. A kind and polite man received us with a brilliant smile, and drove us to the Children’s Home where I met the kids (now my brothers and sisters). From the moment that we arrived, I could feel their warmth, their love, and their smiles all around me. I sincerely felt so loved; received with hugs and kind words, as if we had known each other many years.
It was emotional for me, observing them, because it was like seeing myself in a mirror. That is, I could see myself reflected in them, years ago when I was a child (in the Lima Children’s Home) and teams from other areas of the world would arrive, always so kind and giving me smiles and lots of love.
But these kids in particular have something special about them, which is their warmth and their tireless love toward us. Day after day, as we were guests in their home, they never stopped making us feel like part of their family and their heart.
One day, as the kids left to walk to school, I watched one of the older boys reach down like a big brother to sweetly take hold of *Mara’s hand, the youngest (and only) girl at the Home. At this, my heart skipped a beat, because I remember that when I was a young boy, the older kids would hold my hand like that too. History repeating itself; to me, this was a beautiful moment.
To see this being lived out–bonds between children that, though they are not biological brothers and sisters, they treat one another as if they were–filled me with pride and moves me even now, because it is clear that it is the love of Christ which makes this way of living possible.
Each moment, each second spent with the children in Andahuaylas, is in my memory and in my heart. I miss running with them on the soccer field, I miss learning from them how to climb those mountains, but above all, I miss their great example of thankfulness in each moment.
I feel very proud of this beautiful ministry that God has brought about in Andahuaylas. The directors, Hugo and Lucy, and the house mom, Tabita, form a wonderful team who day after day not only self-sacrificially work to reach the hearts of the children at the Children’s Home whom they live with, but also seek to spread the love of Christ to the children in the community around them. They invite them in for activities like Bible stories, games, and songs, and encourage them to draw closer to Christ. Their task is not easy, but with the blessing of God and their available hearts, I am convinced that much will be accomplished.
I thank God for the blessing of being part of the team that traveled from Lima to the Kids Alive Children’s Home in Andahuaylas. I invite you and encourage you to grab your bags and visit there yourself. You will meet some beautiful children, and return loaded with love, smiles and lots of hugs, which, I warn you, you will not want to break away from.
Keep praying for this beautiful ministry. I am sure that I will return there soon, because each visit is beautiful, I assure you from personal experience! May God bless you!
*name changed to protect privacy