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Let me start out by saying that I'm not going anywhere. =) I am in Chicago in seminary, and it is going very well. I am planning on visiting Costa Rica again in the next few months, probably at the end of the semester, before I start my summer internship, and I am also very involved in the program -- or at least as involved as I can be from the US.
The program is thriving in Costa Rica, and is being run by a wonderful director named Morgan Leap. You can check out her travelogue and current goings-on in Pavas at www.travelpod.com/members/morganfay.
She is serving about 150 children now, and it is becoming more and more evident that the program needs a new space
Another pressing reason for a move is that the pastors of Iglesia Jesus Nuestro Refugio (the church in which the program is housed) have decided that they will be allowing only Lutherans to work there, starting at the end of Morgan's time, in August; of course, this is something that the program cannot abide by, since I need to be most concerned with the qualifications of the person working in the program and not with their denomination. I am very saddened by this turn of events, but if this is the direction that their church is moving in, I can't stand in the way of that.
Morgan was able to find a plot of land that is available, with three existing brick houses, fruit trees and a garden -- about 6,000 square feet and at the top of the hill (so that flooding would be almost a non-issue!). We are excited about it, but do not have the money at this point in time to buy it. The owner is willing to sell it for about $42,000, which is the right price for that land.
Even if we are unable to raise the funds in time to buy that particular plot of land, there is other land in that community that would be available if the funds were there to buy it
I am making an appeal for donations for the survival of this program. So much hard work has gone into it, and it has become such a staple of this community. The children are enjoying reading, and Morgan has now set up a separate art class for older children. I am hoping to put a music education graduate in for next year so that some serious music classes can start. If your youth groups are looking for a cause to fundraise for, or if you were wondering where you could donate money, please think about this program. I never really thought it would take off like this, but it has, and we need your help!
Thank you so much for all your support.
Donations (marked in the memo line for La Aula Amarilla) can be sent to:
St. Paul Lutheran Church
21915 Beech St.
Dearborn, MI 48124