Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Why Kaya?

John Eggen, Chairperson of Kaya's Board of Directors

It’s been over eight years since I was first involved with Kaya.  I was introduced to the ministry and family of then the Barnabas House through Dr. Chi. Over the past 8 years Kaya has become a part of my life and has had a formative role in who I am today.  As we celebrate and honor Dr. Chi’s 15 years of service to Kaya we cannot overlook the prophetic imagination that Chi, Park Street, and La Iglesia Communidad had so many years ago to love, serve and live with these young boys abandoned to the street.  Thank you to all who were a part of those early moments in Kaya’s life.  Without your bold stance against child homelessness the lives we celebrate today would not be.

This love and passion for serving, loving and sharing is exactly what drew me to Kaya eight years ago.  Kaya has always had a history of sharing and living out the whole Gospel to the whole person through love and service to each child Kaya has served.  I grew up in a mainline church and experienced a rich history of serving those in need, but often disconnected from the Gospel message.  Later in life I’d work with an Evangelical organization that spoke openly about the penalty of sin, the gift of grace and new life in Christ.  The struggle was sharing this message to a hurting world where people suffered from immense poverty.  To those suffering, words did not convey love.  Action conveyed love.

In Acts 28:31 we read the apostle Paul lived, “proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance.”  This is precisely what Kaya’s ministry has been and will continue to be about.  We believe that the kingdom of God is a kingdom where the sins of society do not rest on the shoulders of a 6-year-old boy.  Instead the kingdom of God is one where the Church loves, serves, cares for and brings hope to those abandoned by society.  We believe in Jesus Christ and we believe that ultimately it is his love, grace and forgiveness that transforms each of us.  The ministry of Kaya exists to provide healing to children for the pain, suffering and trauma the world has placed on their shoulders done in and through the love of Christ.  Through the work of Kaya children experience a restored childhood, a family, a future.  Through this work they not only hear the Good News of Jesus’ grace, they experience love and grace for the first time.

Over the past eight years I continue to be encouraged by the stories of transformation I witness, yet my heart continues to be broken.  For every Daniel, there are dozens who simply do not make it.  For every child we help, children wait locked in rooms while parents work.  For every child in our homes, more are sold by parents to seemingly innocuous people; into an unknown future.  For every girl in our Kaya center, learning, playing, making crafts and jewelry, dozens more live turning tricks every night.  Daniel has a story, Kaya a partnership, and our staff a helping had to over each of these children, but they cannot do it without our help.

Whatever your faith is, or isn’t at all, we are proud to count as a partner all who share our love, concern and care for our children.  This live changing work is not cheap and cannot be done alone.  We need your partnership.  Kaya has an important future ahead of us as we continue to serve children of Bolivia, restoring dignity, hope and their childhood.  Your monthly sponsorship of $37/month helps support a child within our Kaya Center.  Your annual sponsorship of $5650 covers the full costs for a child in our most intensive programs for a full year.  A gift of that level provides the kind of life changing care and service that transformed Daniel’s life.  What’s more important than the future of Kaya are the futures being lost this very moment as children wait for hope and restoration to enter their lives.  Join us today, bringing hope, grace and change into their lives.

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