Thursday, May 7, 2015

Reflections on Hogar de Amor - Jamie

Last month we had the joy and pleasure of our third annual trip to the Hogar de Amor orphanage in Colima, Mexico.  You can read all about the trip on our team blog,

Here are my reflections from this year's trip.

Hogar de Amor is a lot of things to me. It's a place I get to serve alongside my kids and my mom. It's a place I get to bring my church family and introduce them to the amazing joys of serving. It's a place where I am reminded of how very much I have to be grateful for. It's a place full of friends who mean a whole darn lot to me. It's a place of grace. It's a place that's doing institutional care right.

I have 2 kids by birth and 2 by adoption, so I've spent more than my fair share of time in orphanages (although nowhere near as long as my girls!). There is no substitute for a permanent home and a loving family, but if anything could come close, it's Hogar de Amor.

Grupo Amor (the church that runs Hogar de Amor) is committed to doing the very best they can for the kids in their care. These kids have food to eat and clothes to wear. They have houseparents and community who truly love them and are committed to them for the long haul. They have excellent education and are supported all the way through university. They have Jesus at every turn.

Somebody asked the very good question before this year's trip: If these kids have it so good, why don't we go to a really destitute place, a place where they really need us? My answer is two-fold:
  1. The kids and caregivers of Hogar de Amor, though better off than many, still sure do appreciate extra hands, extra supplies, and a few hours when they don't have to serve as parent to 12-30 small children. Let's not romanticize things too much here; life is not easy at the hogar.
  2. This is a chance for us to support a group who is trying to do things right. Hogar de Amor is a movement out of the community striving to care for its own. They are committed to best practices in orphan care. And by supporting them, we help them to spread and care for more kids following the same healthy model.
Hogar de Amor is not a perfect place - but it is a good place. And it is sheer joy to me that I get to be a small part of this very good place.

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