Christina and Morgan attended Walk2gether’s launch in Guatemala on Dec. 29, 2009. Here is an excerpt from Christina’s reflection, written shortly after returning to the U.S.
“I wanted to sponsor a girl in Guatemala around the same age as Morgan (my youngest daughter) so that Morgan could be a part of this relationship.
Morgan and Candelaria meet in Guatemala.
I was hoping that she would develop a relationship through the mail, write letters and one day meet this sponsored child, and it would be an automatic bond.
That’s exactly how it happened. Our sponsored child, Candelaria, is a year and a half younger than Morgan.
We sponsored her when she was 5 years old. (She is now 10.)
Every time I wrote to Candelaria, Morgan wrote or colored a picture for her. Often when I came home from work, she had written a letter or colored a picture and informed me I needed to do the same so we could get them in the mail.
We had been planning a mission awareness trip through CFCA for a couple of years. We could hardly wait to meet Candelaria and her family.
We arrived on a Friday and saw her for the first time on Monday. It was a beautiful reunion. She and Morgan hugged, but were shy toward each other at first.
It was only a matter of minutes before they were holding hands.
Candelaria is the oldest of four children. Her mother and baby brother came with her. They had to travel about an hour to see us.
Rosa, Morgan and Anna Maria.
Native Mayan language and Spanish are the languages of Guatemala. We had an interpreter, but sometimes words were not needed (and I did pretty well with my Spanish).
Many Guatemalan people are descendants from the Mayans. Here’s a picture of Morgan with Rosa (14 years) and Anna Maria (10 years), two of the sisters from a home he visited. Morgan was 10 in this picture.
Look at the difference in their sizes. Everywhere we went when the local children learned how old Morgan was, especially the girls, they stared and called her a giant.
Last, but definitely not least, Bob Hentzen was on the mission awareness trip with us. He was there to begin his walk from Guatemala for Chile.
This is one reason we chose this week ñ to be part of this history-making moment.
The walk began on Dec. 29, 2009, and I was there taking pictures along with everyone else on this 8,000-mile journey through 12 countries.
Everyone on the trip was invited to join the walk.
I wanted to leave at 4 a.m. with all the rest, but Morgan was not up for that and I could not leave her.
So we joined with the walk at 8 a.m. after breakfast.
Morgan, Bob and Christina.
Bob, Cristina (Bobís wife) and the CFCA staff have mapped out this journey carefully with an ending destination for each day. Each day’s journey is 40 kilometers (about 25 miles).
They asked on the days before the walk how many kilometers we wanted to sign up for, in increments of 10 kilometers (6.2 miles).
Morgan insisted we only sign up for 5 kilometers. However, I was very proud of her. She walked 11 kilometers, about 7 miles, and I walked 13 kilometers. It was so amazing!!!
As we passed each town, they cheered us on, lined the streets and joined us on the walk. Many walked with us to the next town, then turned around and walked home.
Many families, women, children and men started from the beginning with Bob and journeyed with him to the end of the day after the 40 kilometers.
Thank you for taking the time to read this excerpt from our journey. Many ask, “Will you go back?” Definitely.
It was my second mission awareness trip through CFCA, but the beginning of more to follow, if that is God’s will.