Monday, November 15, 2010

Wow, What a Weekend!

So much has happened over the last couple of days, I am just not sure where to begin or how to put it into words.  I'll start with Friday when I picked up Brian and Michael's first report cards.  Thank you to everyone that has been praying for them in their studies.  It turns out Brian James made the class Honor Roll with an average of 96.8% in all his classes.  He was disappointed to not have made the school Honor Roll, though, because he scored just below 90% in 2 classes - Spanish (87%) and Estudios Sociales (89%).  Next term he should have it nailed.  And Michael did very well, all things considered having an overall average of 80%.  He passed every class except Spanish, but his teacher said she is confident he'll have a passing grade for the semester.  I am so proud of them both!  This has been an extremely difficult quarter and they stuck with it and worked hard. 

Friday night we made our way to El Hatillo to the house of Simon Kafie for an early Christmas party and the opportunity to make a solid presentation to the elite of Honduras to partner with Micah.  Between 100-200 people were in attendance including the Ambassador to the U.S., Hugo Llorens, 2 former Presidents of Honduras, and the CEO's of all the major banks in Central America.  Michael Miller began the presentation sharing the history of Micah and what the vision for the future is.  Brian spoke next, sharing about the Technical School and wrapped up his time by presenting a beautiful keepsake box to Simon...which was made by one of our students who used to live in the dump.  Marvin Morazan and Oscar Izaguirre, 2 of the older Micah guys shared their stories next, then Drew Smith from St. Louis wrapped it up by laying out 5 different ways for them to partner with us. 

Let me tell you a little more about Simon Kafie.  He was educated in the states at Georgetown University, is President and CEO of a family company, Hondutec, and is the Consulate to the Kingdom of Norway.  He lives behind 30 ft high walls and rides in armored cars with body guards.  He's one of the big players, but his heart is bigger than all of that.  One of the most poignant moments came when Marvin Morazan was sharing his story, he made a comment about how he didn't feel he belonged in such a palacial setting as Simon's house, and Simon responded back "yes, yes you do, more than anyone."  He has put his influence to good use in promoting Micah, and this weekend was no exception.  The society magazine Cromos has wanted to interview him for 10 years and he has always turned them down.  This time, however, he said yes, on one condition...that the story be about Micah.  All night the photographer ran around snapping pictures of everyone, it was really kind of fun.  And I can't wait for the January edition to come out so I can buy up muchas copias!

Saturday morning I was privileged to be invited to the 6th grade graduation for Carlos, the son of my housekeeper and friend Daisy. Hondurans are only required to complete the 6th grade, so this graduation is celebrated much like our high school graduation in the states. Complete with cap and gown, it was touching to see the pride and accomplishment on the faces of the kids. And for their parents, many of whom never made it that far.

Then Saturday night we got to participate in what was truly one of the most remarkable experiences of my life, the graduation from high school of 5 of our Micah guys.  It was one of those moments when everything becomes so clear, when you realize what truly matters and how you want to spend your most precious commodity, time.  David Hawthorne put together a wonderful video showing Maycol, Jeferson, Hector, Hauner, and Brian, from the early days up through recent times.  Michael Miller's dad gave a wonderful message of inspiration and encouragement.  The teachers and Micah Board members came to the front of the church and stood in a line, hugging each graduate after they received their diploma.  And then one by one, they made their way to the podium to say a few words.  Every single one of them was overcome with the enormity of the moment, that they had graduated from high school, and with tears in their eyes had trouble finding words.  Hauner, who's parents died while he was young and spent several years living on the streets while his older brother Oscar tried to support them by shining shoes.  He never should have made it.  Hector Licona, now in his 20's, struggled academically, standing before a crowd of almost 400 shedding tears of appreciation.  He never should have made it.  Brian Chavez, coming from another ministry who had done all they could do for him.  His mom sat in front of us crying, as he stood at the podium struggling to keep his composure and find the words to express his gratitude.  He never should have made it.  Jeferson, who's been with Micah for many years, also struggled academically, but with the perserverance and love of his teachers proudly stood holding his diploma.  He never should have made it.  And Maycol Mesa, growing up in Barrio Buenos Aires, with a single mom, in extreme poverty.  Statistically he should have been swallowed up into drugs and gang life.  He never should have made it. 

But they all did.  And what a huge accomplishment!  God reached down into these lives that seemed to be destined for destruction and gave them life and hope.  Jeremiah 29:11 says "For I know the plans I have for you, plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope."  And that's what they look forward to now, the future, with hope.  For me, it was humbling to realize that God had chosen us to be a part of this, to be a witness to the miracle of His transforming power and love in the lives of those the world has cast aside.  There isn't anywhere else I would have rather been and I truly feel honored to be a part of this amazing work that is The Micah Project. 

Please continue to pray for all our guys at Micah, those living here in Honduras and studying in colleges abroad.  We cherish your prayers and support more than words can possibly express.

Blessings and peace to you all,



Anonymous said...

2 cor 9.12-15 :)carolyn

Anonymous said...

One full year! You never should have made it? Pray for a special family the mom can't bring the kids to church anymore because her work schedule changed. The dad has to drop off the kids. Last Sunday was the first week he stayed and went into church. Sound familiar? Love your family and praying for you.

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