Last night our team hosted a Preview Event, “A Vision To Inspire” to start getting the word out about our documentary project. Chris Wheeler emceed the evening and shared statistics about Guatemala, Amy Stroup and Mary Hooper sang a few songs, we played a team video highlighting our Jan trip, a Trailer for the project, a small but powerful interview from the project and then Scott & I shared our hearts and journey. Our room was decorated beautifully highlighting photos of the precious people we met (thanks Ericha, Kayla & Mary for the beautiful decorations!). We had a variety of desserts including Tres Leches, Flan and Horchata. 60+ folks joined us to hear about the vision and purpose of this documentary. As a team we were energized and encouraged by the response. It’s been so hard to communicate to people the scope of our project, so it was fun to show and share more about it. People continually said, “We had no idea… about Guatemala… the scope of this project… your story.” We’ll be hosting a few other Vision Evenings this fall to continue to cast the vision and tell the story. Please join us if you were unable too last night!
Currently, we have a few needs to move forward with this project. First, a small crew is returning to Guatemala in August to capture some more footage. If you would like to make a financial contribution towards the trip, go to www.athentikos.com and click on “help us spread the word!” Second, we need help with financial, marketing and business items. If you are interested in joining our team, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
On the blog here, we’ll start to share our personal journey and the vision for the project. So I’ll start at the beginning… here’s a little of what I shared last night:
In 2005, after struggling with infertility for several years, Scott and I attended an adoption conference- it was more out of desperation than desire. Soon after, we knew we were supposed to pursue adoption, but my heart was still raw. I wasn’t excited about the option and felt bitter that it felt forced upon us. But I trusted that God would change my heart. A year later on Mother’s Day 2006, we carried an eight-month-old baby boy home from Guatemala. In the course of that year, God HAD changed my heart – I had completely fallen in love with a child and a country. I can’t image my life without either. Soon after we adopted another boy from Guatemala. So – through our four visits with the adoptions, we committed to learning about the culture in Guatemala. Before I started the adoption process, I knew very little about the country. So in effort to see more than just the touristy stuff, we made contact with an acquaintance, an American Missionary who lived in Guatemala City – Joel van Dyke. Joel and his organization provide Biblical & Theological training to Latin American volunteers who are already doing significant ministry in their communities, they have very little.
Joel passionately shared their vision for the Least, the Last and the Lost – for reaching people in hard, desperate places like the slums, the prisons, the homeless – for asking beautiful questions of people that are forgotten to much of society – for hearing their personal stories and through that connecting and sharing Christ. So through our relationship with him we learned about the deep needs in the country and the amazing work God is doing through His people there. Every time we visited, we met new people. We heard their personal stories, their vision for their communities and their hearts of hope in God’s provision. We were inspired by a country we previously knew little about … our desire became to inspire others through these stories– not just so others might be interested in Guatemala, but so they would be inspired to use their personal skills to impact the communities around them.