In the spirit of Christmas, Roots & Wings seeks out opportunities for the kids to exemplify love and and experience the joy of giving to others. Last year, our elementary students spent some time with the elderly at an assisted living home. This year, they visited Rancho de los Niños, a local orphanage for special needs children.
Rancho is run by our good friends, Back2Back Ministries. The children in this orphanage receive lifesaving services like medical attention, physical therapy, assistive devices and family-style care. We chose to go to Rancho this year because we felt it was a great opportunity to show our children just how blessed they truly are to have healthy bodies, homes to go home to, and families that love them. But we also wanted them to understand that these children aren’t defined by their disability, their past, or their hardship, just like they aren’t defined by theirs. Every one of them have intrinsic value because of their Creator who made them and loves them.
Naturally, the kids were a bit timid at first, but their shyness wore off quickly and they soon began playing games, pushing wheelchairs, giving hula hoop lessons, and doling out hugs. The kids had each picked a child at the orphanage for whom to purchase a gift and spent the last couple of months saving their spending money to get them something fun for Christmas. They made cards and wrote them special messages. They performed their Christmas program dance.
It was a special morning that we hope we can repeat.
(To respect the privacy of the children in the orphanage, we’ve blurred their sweet faces.)
No matter what their circumstances in life, each one of them is loved. Cherished. Important. EVERY one of them was fearfully and wonderfully made by a God who loves them very much. I hope we can ALL take the opportunity to share that message with those around us this Christmas.
From all the staff and children of Roots & Wings,