By Casey Watson
Baptist Global Response
Myrna once walked hours over mountainous terrain in Guatemala to collect water for herself and her eight children.
She had to fight for this one, basic element of survival, and she had no way to guarantee its level of sanitation. According to Baptist Global Response (BGR) personnel in the area, her children often grew sick because she could only give them contaminated water.
But then BGR helped fund a water system for Myrna’s community.
That project in Guatemala — and so many others — have touched lives like Myrna’s because Southern Baptists have sacrificed their dollars for BGR water projects. Even children have piled their pennies into Vacation Bible School (VBS) offering plates so boys and girls like them can enjoy clean, refreshing water.
In fact, some VBS events, like the one at Highland Park Baptist Church, Muscle Shoals, have given impressive amounts to provide communities with this essential need.
Last summer, the roughly 220 students who attended the church’s VBS pooled their money to offer nearly $2,000 toward BGR water projects. Global Outreach Pastor John Russell said the church added a little to the pot so the children could fund two complete wells for communities in need.
Passion for helping
Russell said the boys and girls discovered a passion for helping others after BGR CEO Jeff Palmer made a personal trip to Highland Park and talked to the students about villages that desperately needed wells, water systems and water filters.
“I think, at first, they were a little stunned — particularly our younger ones — because I don’t think they had a concept of people not being able to get clean drinking water,” Russell said. “And then [as they asked] questions and through the teaching we had done during the week, they began to get the big picture. They were very enthusiastic about their offering.”
BGR hopes to give that opportunity to more children this summer. Those interested can visit gobgr.org/VBS or call the BGR office at 866-974-5623 to get more information about how their VBS students can show God’s love to villages in Myrna’s area and around the world.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Myrna’s name changed for privacy reasons.