5 out of 10 people in El Salvador are considered to be living in poverty. 4 out of those 5 are considered to be in extreme poverty (read: no running water, etc.).

Now knowing that, let me tell you about our day so far.

The Bible study this week, which was written by the locals, is themed, “Who is First?” The themes are God first, God’s Word first, Others first, My Neigborhood first. Today the kids learned about putting their neighborhood before themselves. 

Tuty invited kids from extreme poverty to come to camp today for a party. Our kids put on the party. Each cabin was assigned a task: making decorations, making a local favorite drink, making sandwiches, making goody bags, stuffing the piñatas, coming up with the entertainment. Our kids did everything from gauntletting the incoming kids to serving the sandwiches and drinks to entertaining them from stage with games and music.  Also, all of our kids brought a toy to give away, so there was a special table with gifts that each kid could pick one and take it home.

{the sign they made}

{piñata party}

{the gift table}

This party had so many levels of awesome. 

First, is the obvious: we got to love and celebrate kids who have probably never been celebrated before! We got to feed them, give them a toy, and provide FUN for them.

Second, our kids got to practically experience what it means to love your neighbor above yourself. All week our kids had been so excited for the pinatas, but today they learned they were for the other kids and they handled it really well. They were all clapping and cheering on whoever was swinging for the piñata.

Third, it was so cool to see our kids mimic what they had seen all the counselors do this week. They formed a “gauntlet” and were jumping and screaming as the neighbor kids entered the gym. The boys on stage were basically quoting us in the mic and did exactly what they had seen us do this week. We know that campers look up to their counselors, but it was so cool to suddenly see all these little “mini mes” running around.

Fourth, the kids were entirely responsible for putting this on. They were given instruction, but they carried out all of it. It was so cool to see these kids step up as leaders when we entrusted more to them.

Fifth, one of the boys who MC’d from stage really surprised Tuty. She told me that he has been really shy last year and this year, so it was very surprising that he was on stage in front of everyone. You never know how camp will grow a kid!

Sixth, a lot of our kids had been complaining a lot this week, so it was awesome for them to see what joy is found in giving our lives away for the sake of others.

So yeah, today absolutely blew us away. Yes, we are teaching the locals how to do camp, but I would wager to say they are teaching us even more. They have been so intentional and have used so many practical examples to apply to what the kids are learning in Bible study. 

We are having a great time, we have definitely hit our stride, and we can’t believe this is our last full day of camp!

Prayer requests:

-the Gospel is being shared at club tonight: pray they would have understanding and kids could come to know Christ tonight!

-continued health and safety

Until next time,

Your Fiesta Friends