The following testimony comes to us from our Local Church Initiative partners at El Faro. It is the remarkable story of a 49 year old woman, Coni; her family’s struggle and determination to survive, and how God has answered her prayers.
15 years ago, due to living in extreme poverty, the Gutierrez Sanchez family moved to a place close to the Managua Lake, better known as “La Chureca.” They made their living by collecting recyclable materials in the dump and selling them for a small profit. There were 10 people in the Gutierrez Sanchez family – five adults and five children. One of the adults is mentally disabled. Despite their challenges, the family worked together to survive.
When the Nicaraguan government (along with Spain) built 300 homes for the families of the dump, to form a new community known as Villa Guadalupe, circumstances changed for the family. The family got a home and was promised a job at the new recycling plant, but they did not receive the work needed to make an income. So the family made a new way of getting an income by recollecting large used bags (that often held rancid food). They had to clean the dirty bags with chlorine and then resell them for 2 cords each (about $0.07 each). They barely had enough money for food.
Concepcion (Coni), the matriarch, had been praying to God for over a year to help her family provide food for their home. Just recently, some members of El Faro church visited her. They asked her if she would consider using her home as a feeding center where the kids that live close by could go to receive their lunch. She saw this as an answer to her prayers and willingly opened her home.
Today Coni is currently serving around 60 children lunch from her home, and it guarantees that her family has food as well. Realizing that He heard her prayers caused Coni to reconcile with God and accept his call upon her life – to be a disciple for His children. She feels she’s been called to grow the capacity of the lunch program to serve the other hungry children in Villa Guadalupe.
We asked Coni where does she see herself in five years, she answered:
“There are some children that only get one meal per day and sometimes they get none. I want to get involved so much that we will be able to open more feeding centers and serve more children and serve God as well. In five years I hope I am still serving God because he has changed my life.”
It’s hardly possible to contain all the emotion and feelings we got when hearing her story. What is left for us now is join Mrs. Sanchez in her exciting dream to become a complete server of God.
~ El Faro Ministry Team