Transformation Takes Root in Peru
The village of Shushuna, Peru, is hidden under the inconspicuously diverse canopy of the Amazonian rainforest.
For generations, Shushuna’s ancient people, strong and resolute, have raised generations of children on the bounty of the forest. Their intricately woven huts stand testament to the Amazon’s intrinsic beauty and mystery. They are a people rich in hospitality and warmth, highly attune to their dependence on the land for the livelihood of their families.
In recent years, our partner Robert Barriger has been living among the people, building relationships and working to better understand the needs of the community. The people in Shushuna have not been readily receptive to the Gospel as the pressing problems of daily life have stolen time and energy from the villagers, overshadowing the urgency of their spiritual needs.
Without access to modern medical care, the village struggles continually with common, preventable illnesses, mostly caused by drinking dirty water from a local stream.
“Before our new well, we walked an hour to get to the creek,” explains Mary, a 57-year-old Shushuna villager. “Everyone was always sick.”
However, the day clean water arrived in Shushuna was a monumental one, opening the door for the Gospel . . . to the one source of eternal hope.
As the clean water flowed, Shushuna’s fledgling church, Lily of the Valley, overflowed with people thirsty for Living Water. Finally, they had encountered a God who cared for all their needs—body and soul.
Although our work in Peru extends from the banks of the Amazon to the limitless heights of the Andes Mountains, our strategy provides holistic and sustainable methods for change. Meeting the needs of the body is the gateway to meeting the needs of the soul.
In the Peruvian capital of Lima lives a hidden remnant of children whose days are marked with silent and continual struggle. This is Shely’s home.
When she was 14, Shely’s mother committed suicide. Her father became increasingly distant, until he began making plans to prostitute Shely to paying strangers. After hearing of the plan, Shely’s uncle removed her from the home and placed her into our sponsorship program where she is now thriving for the first time in her life.
The pervasiveness of abuse in Peru is staggering, making it South America’s notorious leader in sexual abuse. Generations of young girls, like Shely, face imminent danger on a daily basis.
Grace Home—the only facility of its kind in the country—provides a safe haven, emotional and spiritual counseling, and long-term support for these recovering survivors. Andrea is one of them.
After enduring years of trauma and mistreatment, Andrea came to Grace Home with wounds that only God’s love could heal. Now a graduate of the program, Andrea has emerged with freedom and joy.
I am not my circumstances. I am who God says I am. I am His daughter and everything that reality represents. In this place I found my desire to live, and I dreamt of a future for the first time in my life.
Our desire to reach the helpless and vulnerable also extends to the empty corners of forgotten communities where many Peruvians with special needs reside.
Ill-equipped to cope with these overwhelming challenges, many special-needs citizens serve life-sentences of loneliness, vulnerability, and destitution.
For those who struggle with immobility, the gift of a wheelchair means more than movement or independence; it’s a second chance at life itself.
Our wheelchair outreach to these impoverished Andean villages—provides each recipient with a new wheelchair and a personal copy of God’s Word, which has given hundreds of special-needs citizens new hope and freedom. This is why we are more determined than ever to continue our initiatives in Peru . . . because there are so many more Peruvians who still need hope.
Are you interested in experiencing firsthand what God is doing in Peru? Then you’re invited to join our journey to this incredible nation, November 14-20! Walk with us through an ancient civilization and witness the need—and the transformation—for yourself. We promise you will leave with a greater perspective of God’s life-changing work around the world. Visit worldhelp.net/trips for a complete itinerary or to request additional information for upcoming trips.