Jun 20 2012

Changing one child’s world: New sponsor’s letter

CFCA sponsor and volunteer Steve Taylor is webmaster of his parish website, the St. Jerome Catholic Church in Newport News, Va. Part of the site includes a webpage devoted to his parish’s partnership with CFCA. During the parish’s March sponsorship drive, they found sponsors for 31 children and aging friends.

One of these new sponsors, Lisa Garner, submitted a beautiful letter to her parish explaining her sponsorship experience. It’s our privilege to share it with you!

Dear St. Jerome family,

My family and I recently made the decision to sponsor a child through CFCA, and I wanted to share some of my thoughts about what a wonderful experience it has been so far.

Russel, CFCA sponsored child

A photo of Russel in the Philippines. He is now sponsored by Lisa Garner and her family in Virginia.

I cannot say that I was completely unaware of CFCA and its mission. I had heard a presentation in the past, and browsed the table of sponsorship packets, but I was not ready to say “yes.”

I was worried about making such a long-term financial commitment while there were financial obligations in my own family that I wasn’t even sure could be met.

I suppose I was afraid, and like many things in life, fear becomes a barrier to doing the right thing.

Recently the opportunity to become a sponsor came around again. I’m sure that in sharing his CFCA mission awareness trip experience with the parish, Steve Taylor piqued a lot of interest.

His talk was moving, and I have since come to see that both he and Judi Allison have a passion and a mission to encourage others to partner with CFCA.

Russel, our sponsored child, is a 10-year-old boy who lives in the Philippines. While looking over all the children in need of sponsorship, I kept coming back to his information packet.

He is a small boy with a big smile, and something else about him, a kindness, or gentleness of some sort that seems to emanate from the inside out.

I put his picture on our refrigerator door and say a little prayer for him, his family and his village every time I see it.

The thought of Russel’s everyday living situation humbles me and reminds me to appreciate everything I have and take for granted.

This past Friday, I was having a “hard” day and struggling with some sadness. But when I got home from work I saw that Russel’s very first letter had arrived!

I was so happy: I just read and re-read his letter. The sadness of the day was gone, replaced with a sweet joy. I felt my heart expand like the Grinch’s (no other commonalities, I promise!).

Suddenly, our relationship with a child half a world away became “real,” his words to us sealing the bond.

I am looking forward to getting to know Russel through our letters, and hopefully, making a positive difference in his life.

There is so much need out there. And while we’re not changing the world, we are helping to change the world that one child knows.

If you are not already a sponsor, won’t you please consider it?

-Lisa Garner

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0 thoughts on “Changing one child’s world: New sponsor’s letter”

  1. I LOVE this! I second the above comments, God bless you and yours. It seems like there is nothing more powerful than to “change the world that one child knows.” I, too, am a sponsor, and I can’t think of anything more rewarding.

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