Jan 4 2011

A letter to the Walk2gether camper

Here is a tongue-in-cheek post from Rafael Villalobos, CFCA project coordinator in San Jose, Costa Rica. Rafa joined CFCA President and Co-founder Bob Hentzen on Walk2gether and made friends with the iconic Walk2gether camper, a vehicle that has accompanied Bob since the walk began. The camper is with Bob right now in Peru.

Hello, dear friend camper:

I remember the first time I saw your picture. You looked good. Don Roberto (Bob) told me, ìItís old, like me, but it still runs.î

Walk2gether camper

CFCA Walk2gether camper.

They told us your name: Walk2gether Camper.

We waited for you happily. I fondly remember March 1, when you arrived in Costa Rica together with the walkers. Everyone watched you with respect.

You came loaded with luggage, lots of water, tools, spare tire, food, kitchen supplies, clothes for the walkers, medicine, electric generator, etc.

You looked tired and beaten, but in your lights, I noticed an immense joy.

With your flashers, you animated the children and sang with us, ìWhile walking, borders disappear. We become of one land, one cry for justice, and we blend together like the land blends when we make footprints while we walk. We join dignity and hope in one flag Ö Latin America.î

You drove thousands of miles on your tires. The logos and banners you wore indicated you were not simply a camper. ì12,500 kilometers bringing hope.î

You were like Noahís Ark, crossing oceans to bring hope and blessings to all the villages.

I remember one rainy afternoon when you shared what it means to be part of CFCA: Read more about the Walk2gether camper

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Dec 6 2010

Costa Rican community battles heavy rains

On Nov. 8, we posted this news story about a storm that caused flooding and landslides in Costa Rica. Rafael Villalobos, CFCA project coordinator in San Jose, Costa Rica, sent us this update. Please keep the CFCA families affected by the heavy rains in your prayers.

The Jazmin community is home to Nicaraguan immigrants and Costa Rican migrants from rural areas of the country.

This is an agricultural area settled by various families who arrived seeking better opportunities in life. Nevertheless, the vast majority do not have stable work.

They have constructed humble homes with wood and old tin cans. For water, they must walk to a community tap. A community meter supplies electricity for everyone. Each family has to pay about $50 a month for electricity.

House endangered by rain

A Costa Rican house is endangered by the erosion from heavy rains.

Because of heavy rains in the past weeks, the ground has eroded considerably to the point where these families are in great danger. Many of their homes have collapsed into the ravine. Due to the solidarity among neighbors, several families are living in the same house.

Six families are currently staying in the community center.

The downpours in recent days has washed out the ground to the point where the land is split in two, isolating the families.

DoÒa Rosa, the mother of sponsored children and a great supporter of CFCA, has lost a large part of her home.

ìThe only part that remains is the small room built with the help of CFCA. I donít know what will happen to us,” she said. “The officials have asked us to leave this place because it is very dangerous, because a landslide could occur at any moment. But where will we go?î

In the midst of this pain, she remains hopeful.

ìGod will not abandon us,î she said. ìHe is with us and he has sent his angels in the face of CFCA, who are with us giving us encouragement and hope.î

Seventy families with sponsored members live in Jazmin. Nearby is the community of Tejarcillos, which has also been affected by the heavy rains.

With Christmas approaching, these situations bring to mind the birth of the child Jesus in the midst of extreme circumstances, similar to what these families are experiencing.

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Nov 15 2010

Desert brings clarity to Walk2gether in Peru

Rafael Villalobos, CFCA project coordinator in San Jose, Costa Rica, sent us this blog post about his walk in Peru with CFCA Co-founder and President Bob Hentzen.

Bob and the Walk2gether team are still in Peru, as of Nov. 15.

ìBut then I will lure her back. I will lead her into the desert and speak tenderly to her.î ó Hosea 2:14

This text from Hosea brings profound clarity to Walk2gether pilgrims as we traverse the desert of Peru.

Rafael Villalobos, CFCA

Rafael Villalobos

Our Lord has an uncommon way of enchanting us. He brings to the desert those who have been chosen and talks to their hearts.

In the desert, you either trust him or die. There are no certainties or comforts. It is a place of insecurity and solitude.

The desert is a place where we feel we can easily lose important people and things in our life.

In this desert, God talks to the heart of CFCA. He is luring, enchanting and questioning all of us who are part of this movement.

In this harsh reality, he calls us to return to generosity, toward dreams that feed our desire for a new world, and to trust that he is with us on our journey.

It is a call for radical love. We need lots of love to be able to walk these roads.

I believe that this experience is a call to leave a comfortable life, without commitment, without devotion, and to turn toward a lifestyle more in tune with the call we are receiving.

Don Roberto (Bob Hentzen) always says that being in CFCA is a vocation, a calling. Itís not easy work.

It is truly impressive to watch him and DoÒa Cristina (his wife) go step by step in the middle of the desert, walking with happiness and hope.

Walk2gether in the Peruvian desert

The Walk2gether team continues in the desert of Peru.

Recently, the movie ìEat Pray Loveî was released. I have tried to conjugate these verbs in this desert of Peru:

Eat: There are no luxuries in the desert. We eat simply at the side of the road the food prepared by DoÒa Luz. The food tastes glorious when it is prepared with love and shared among friends.

Love: Love conquers pain and fatigue. Here in the desert, love is more pure, without applause or media. You need a love beyond limits to be able to walk this path. We support one another. We encourage one another to keep going when we are tired.

Pray: ìI will lift up my eyes to the mountains. From where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth. He will not allow your foot to slipî (Psalms 121:1-3). This psalm profoundly reflects the experience of praying in the desert.

May God grant us all the spiritual experience of a desert so that we can rediscover the true sense of our life of service to those most in need.

Residents of a girlís boarding school in Lima joined the walkers for a day. Hear Bobís podcast below.

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