Oct 13 2010

Sponsor reflects on what it means to “walk with the poor”

Everyone at CFCA is grateful for every sponsor who has chosen to partner with us. Here is a beautiful reflection from Matthew Potter, CFCA sponsor and volunteer.

“To walk with the poor.” Thatís a phrase that sometimes just trickles from our lips without really thinking about it.

Sherry, Evanson and Matthew

From left are Sherry Sopha-Potter, Evanson from Kenya and Matthew Potter.

We watch Bob Hentzen lace up his boots and head on down the road knowing that he does, indeed, walk with the poor.

Do we, as CFCA sponsors, walk with the poor, even though we arenít on the road with Bob?

In fact, we do. The most obvious way is when we make our contribution each month in support of our sponsored friends.

We took on this responsibility in a conscious action with the intention of helping someone who needs some assistance, and with the knowledge that sharing in our good fortune is a directive given to us by God.

Jesus tells us, “Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more.” (Luke 12:48, New American Bible)

The money we send to CFCA each month goes to help a real, live person. Someone whose name we know, who goes to sleep each night and wakes up each morning.

Someone who laughs, cries, celebrates joyous occasions and worries about what challenges life will bring today. In other words, someone a lot like us.

Our lives are richer because of our relationships with our sponsored friends.

We walk with our friends each time we make our contribution, each time we write a letter, each time we pray for them.

They help us along the journey with their love and prayers.

Even though we may not travel the road with Bob, through our sponsorship and our faith, we most assuredly do walk with the poor.

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Sep 13 2010

Walk2gether finds company in Kenya

Meru celebrates Walk2gether.

People walk in Meru, Kenya, in solidarity with CFCA President Bob Hentzen as he continues on Walk2gether.

From Michigan to Meru, Kenya, people associated with CFCA are creating their own versions of ìWalk2gether,î CFCA President Bob Hentzenís ongoing journey from Guatemala to Chile (Bob is now in Peru). Here is a report by Regina Mburu, communications liaison in Kenya, of a 16-mile solidarity walk.

ìBy walking with them, we are saying you are not alone, we are listening to you and we are learning from you.î ñ CFCA President Bob Hentzen, who has been walking since Dec. 29, 2009.

In a show of solidarity with this noble course, the CFCA-Meru community organized a walk on Aug. 20, 2010.

A Kenyan woman weaves a basket.

A woman weaves as she walks in Meru, Kenya.

The 25.5-kilometer (16-mile) walk in the rural setting of Meru attracted many members of the CFCA community. Led by a group that held high the CFCA Walk2gether banner, the participants braved the hot sun and dusty roads. This day held great significance to them.

Some women decided to make their walk more interesting by weaving as they walked, their hands busy at work but their feet swift as they enthusiastically joined Bob in his pilgrimage.

ìAs I joined the Meru CFCA community in this walk, I could sense the deep sense of commitment and pride the community has towards the foundation, walking the significant distance is a demonstration of oneness with Bob,î said Marios Wanjiku, Meru project coordinator.

At the end of the walk, there were cultural presentations made to crown the day.

ìWe are glad to take part in Bobís journey; we pray that walking together will help us understand each otherís needs better,î Wanjiku said. ìWe hope that Bob will feel encouraged as he carries on with his mission.î

Editorís note: Read about another recent solidarity walk in Michigan.

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May 25 2010

Welcome, Allie and Sami

We’re very excited to introduce two volunteers, Allie and Sami, who will help out on our Walk with the Poor Facebook page this summer. They will be the ones behind the discussion questions, status updates, comments and more. After you meet Allie and Sami here on the blog, head over to Facebook, and leave a message to welcome them!

Allie Kline
My name is Allie Kline, and I’m a junior communication major at Missouri State University. In my free time, I like to hang out with my friends and family, watch St. Louis Cardinals baseball and read. I’ve been involved with CFCA since 2000. I have been sponsoring Allison in Costa Rica since 2006 and visited her and her family on a mission awareness trip in 2009.

SamiSami Freese
My name is Sami, and I live in Denver, Colo. I’m in between my junior and senior year of high school, and I’m 17 years old. I did speak at NCYC, so those of you who were there, hi again! Those who weren’t, hello for the first time! I’ve been sponsoring with CFCA since I was 8, and I went on a mission awareness trip two years ago. CFCA and sponsorship is a big part of who I am, and I’ve realized I can help those in need. It has been an eye-opening and deeply humbling experience, and I hope to share it with you.

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May 21 2010

A cathedral of hope

Jerlin Julieta, 17, from Costa Rica, is a senior in high school and a CFCA scholarship student. To fulfill the service component required of all CFCA scholarship recipients, Jerlin, who graduates this year, helps the project staff in several different areas. She accompanies social workers on home visits, and she helps with office work. She is the leader in her community, especially in activities related to the other scholarship students in the area. Together, they help with monthly meetings, celebrations, etc.

Rafa Villalobos, San Jose project coordinator, said that Jerlin means a lot to the project staff. They felt especially protective of her after her father died.

“In the midst of great difficulty, she has moved on, overcoming obstacles,” Rafa said. “When Don Roberto heard her testimony during a mission awareness trip, he said her story was a cathedral of hope.”

In the video below, Jerlin talks about how the CFCA scholarship program has helped her through many obstacles in life and how receiving a good education is allowing her to achieve her dreams.

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Nov 16 2009

We’ll see you at NCYC

NCYC alert: The CFCA treadmills are back!

The National Catholic Youth Conference (or NCYC, as it is more commonly known) is a three-day event, full of prayer, fun and oh, did we mention, 20,000 high school students. The biennial conference comes to Kansas City, Mo., Nov. 19-21, and CFCA is excited to be at NCYC again this year.

Back to the treadmills, two years ago, NCYC participants were invited by CFCA to walk on treadmills to raise money for students living in poverty. This year, we’re doing it again.

We’re hosting an interactive exhibit (Exhibit 9) in the Reign Forest where students can learn more about sponsorship, watch videos of students around the world and walk on treadmills to raise money toward the sponsorship of Walk with the Poor students.

To top it off, CFCA sponsor and Colorado high school student Sami Freese, 17, will deliver a key-note address at the Saturday general session for all NCYC attendees. We can’t wait!

At NCYC 2007, youth walked a total of 2,234 minutes on the treadmills. This year, while they walk, they’ll get to watch this video of Sami telling about why she sponsors through CFCA.

Join us on Facebook!

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Aug 12 2009

Praying for the future of youth

By the CFCA Prayer Team

Maykel of Nicaragua hopes to be an entrepreneur someday. In India, Rosy dreams of being a police officer. Industrial engineering is the path to which Edwin in Bolivia is called.

Many teens and young adults are partnering with CFCA sponsors to achieve their dreams and change the world for the better. As we celebrate International Youth Day on Aug. 12, let us recognize those young people who soon will be taking the reigns of adulthood and leading the world to a brighter future.

For a glimpse of those students with whom we are partnering in this endeavor, go to www.walkwiththepoor.org. Read their stories and pray with us that they achieve their goals.

Please pray:
Gracious God, you see your children growing up in an unsteady and confusing world. Show them that your ways give more life than the ways of the world. Help them to accept setbacks, not as a measure of their worth, but as a chance for a new start. Give them strength to maintain their faith in you and keep alive their joy in your creation; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Blessings,

CFCA Prayer Team

Receive CFCA’s weekly Prayer Partners email.

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May 19 2009

Sponsorship helped Aileen achieve her dream

AileenThe following is a final letter from Aileen, 20, of CFCA’s Legazpi. Philippines, project. She was sponsored through Walk with the Poor by the Justice League at Rockhurst High School in Kansas City, Mo. Aileen graduated in March 2009 with a bachelor’s in office administration.

Warm greetings to all of you! I hope that you are happy upon handling this letter of mine.

CFCA is such a big help to me and to my family. Iíve been in this foundation for 12 years. Being one of the CFCA beneficiaries is a very big blessing to us. Everything that I need is supported and assisted by CFCA, from the food assistance, medical and dental check-up, educational supplies, clothing, recreational activities, spiritual support and tuition fees. All of these benefits greatly helped us in coping with our needs in life.

I’m very thankful to God because I belong to this foundation, and I have sponsors like you who are willing to help us without expecting in return. I can say that I’m blessed to be sponsored by you. Thank you so much. You know, I’m sad to say that I have to waive your sponsorship for me. I graduated from college through the help of CFCA, last March 26, 2009, with the degree of bachelor of science in office administration. Because of CFCA, I was given an opportunity to finish my studies. My father is a single parent and he cannot afford to send me to college. Thatís why Iím so grateful and thankful to you and to CFCA. I think I won’t able to reach this far without your generous support. Thank you very much!!

Right now, I am clearing all the requirements for me to have the transcript of records. I always pray to God that I could find a good job because I really want to help my family to uplift from poverty. CFCA and you, dearest sponsors, are part of my life. You played a very big role in achieving my dreams. You will be forever in my thoughts and prayers.

My whole family wants to express our regards and sincerest gratitude and thanks to all of you there. You changed and touched our lives. We pray that God will shower you more blessings, and we also wish the success of CFCA.

Thank you very much!!! God bless you all!!

Love always,
Aileen

Read more: Students’ pottery helps Walk with the Poor student finish school

Sponsor an older student

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