Merry Christmas Friends and Partners!
Maybe it seems cliché to say, but I can’t believe another year has gone by. It seems like just yesterday that we planned our holiday travel to end sooner than usual, in order to be sure and not be in the air or out of town for Y2K. And here it is almost 10 years later!
I believe that this years activity with VOB, contributed to a fast paced year of “time flying…having fun”. And fun it has been! We have seen so many things progress in the area of collecting food donations and networking with others who have helped provide for so many needs. Thanks to many friends, local churches and home groups, we are building a community to bring awareness and promote serving our third world neighbors.
We are grateful for the produce company’s who think of the poor before throwing away fruit and vegetables that don’t move fast enough in the business world. These make a great treat to many who can’t afford nutritious food. Remember I mentioned having fun? Well you should have been around when we distributed 2200 pounds of watermelon in Mexico one afternoon, right out of the bed of our truck!
A sudden fire at one of the elderly homes forced 134 residents to be set up in emergency shelter housing in an old drafty dance hall. But the response from various organizations around Tijuana, brought more attention to these overlooked elderly than they would otherwise have ever known. This includes the reunion of an elderly man, who was suffering from dementia. He was reunited with his family, whom he had wandered away from 8 years prior. His family spotted him on the TV news, and he was quickly welcomed back into their home. The same thing occurred with 12 other residents whose families were unaware of their current state of need. It is not uncommon in a large metropolitan and crowded city like Tijuana, for many families to be separated (amidst the chaos) if even only by short distances. VOB got to deliver a shopping cart full of “Depends” due to a spontaneous and quick donation! (thanks Jay & Facebook) See last post for photo’s of the fire.
Our Tuesday night bread distribution outreach has seen attendees nearing 200 at times, proving that hard times are being felt around the world and not just in our own households. Unfortunately, some challenges with the border officials, as we have reported before, have made it difficult for us to transport the quantity needed to meet the needs. But we are gaining some favor and the work has not been thwarted! (continued prayers please!)
Really, there are just too many things to mention in a short Christmas letter. But we did think that you would be interested to know that this Christmas season, VOB was able to collect over 150 toys for the kids in TJ along with an undetermined amount of clothes for their entire families. And again this year, winter hats for everyone at the street outreach, which as already mentioned, meant 200 to wrap! Worth each smile worn on every face!
We appreciate you, our faithful partners, as we end 2009 and begin again in 2010. May your Christmas and New Year bring abundant blessings from Jesus, and hope to your hearts. Thank YOU!
With much love, Wayne & Carol