Int’l (MNN) – Aside from the religious background, Christmas often comes paired with a handful of keywords like family, tradition, and gifts. But what if this year we included phrases like outreach, families in need, orphans, and ministry? How would that change your Christmas experience?
Orphan’s Heart ministers in over a dozen nations to meet the particular needs of vulnerable children and their families as they share the truth of the Gospel. This December, they’re inviting people like you to join them as they celebrate Christmas by serving those in need in the name of Jesus. And, you’ll still be home for Christmas.
The trips take place December 16-22nd. One will be in the Dominican Republic, and the other in Guatemala.
Andrew Tattrie is the Assistant Vice President of Operations at Orphan’s Heart. He says this isn’t your typical mission trip.
“What we plan to do is have Christmas parties with some of our sponsored children and children that are part of our ministries.”
This will include handing out gifts, playing games, and even going on trips with the children. Tattrie says the point is to celebrate what God has done over the past year, as well as celebrate the birth of Jesus all while blessing the children they work with.
“Both of these trips are open to anybody. So if there’s a church group that would like to join those weeks, that would be wonderful. If there are individuals that would like to join, that would be great.”
What Orphan’s Heart is doing in…
In the Dominican Republic, Orphan’s Heart focuses on community development. In a three-way partnership between the local Church, the government, and Orphan’s Heart, they are providing families in difficult situations with housing.
Building site and the community transformation center. (Photo courtesy of Orphan’s Heart)
And these aren’t just basic houses wherever they can find them—they are actually in the process of building 100 brand-new, functional, and safe homes. Despite the heavy winds and rains that came with hurricanes Maria and Irma last month, the existing houses remained standing without any damage.
Tattrie says, “We are able to minister and serve to these children and families that are living in challenging situations and they’re able to move into these homes that are being built at our project. So, not only do teams get to go be part of the construction process, they also get to be part of the actual ministry that is happening at the church plant at our location.”
This ministry to the children includes VBS, music ministry, sports and games, and even sewing classes.
In Guatemala, the work going on through Orphan’s Heart is quite different. Here, they run a malnutrition center for children who are severely undernourished.
“They’re not maturing or developing at the rate that they should be because of malnourishment. So this is a direct, hands-on way to minister with children at our malnutrition center, just to be the hands and feet of Christ to help feed children, play games, sports, even change diapers.”
(Image courtesy of Orphan’s Heart)
While these trips are very different from each other, they both include great opportunities for you to help with the spiritual development of children, their families, and their communities.
To learn more about the Dominican Republic trip, click here. For the Guatemala trip, click here.
“We’re excited for them and we hope that folks will join us and be a part of our Christmas celebrations in the Dominican Republic and Guatemala.”
If neither of these trips will work for you this time around, stay tuned. We’ll be sharing about more exciting short-term mission trips with Orphan’s Heart in days to come!