Thursday, April 8, 2010


Wednesday, our group visited an orphanage for children testing positive for HIV or AIDS. The home is ran by a church from Spain, and the conditions are much better than those forced to live in government ran homes.
The girl pictured here has been one of our favorites to visit with for years. Seeing homes such as this one, that are in much better conditions, proves that it only takes one at a time.
Just like the Starfish story, if no one had ever believed they could make a difference for these HIV/AIDS children, they would be stuck in government homes with the other children. But, because someone believed they could make a difference, these kids have a clean environment to live in and get their needed medications. This is why we can never be discouraged by numbers. Whether it's through Starfish Orphan Ministry or another organization, we are commanded to care for the "least of these."
Often, people say "it must be very depressing to go and see so much pain and need". It is, but it is also very rewarding to be able to do something about it, even if it's for a day.
Sometimes you have to let your hair down and have fun to release the pressure of the day. It looks like these four did a good job of that too!
Maybe we'll call them the Starfish Chicks! Maybe they can bring in the money that we need to start and run orphanage there!. . . or maybe not! We love them anyway, they were stars to the children that they loved on this week!
This is how the people in the squatters camps cook. They just use whatever they can find and make it work. They live like refugees in their own country, a country torn apart by civil wars of the past. There are many children living in these camps. We don't have many pictures of the people that live here, because our team makes an effort not to exploit people when they are down and out and have almost nothing. We don't make picutres of the homeless people that we feed either. These people live more meagerly than animals in a zoo, we don't want them to feel like they are on display.
Wednesday the team went back to San Martin (pronounced San Marteen), and visited their friends at the Special Needs home again. They also went to a squatters village. This is where people live that have no where else to go. They move onto land that they don't own, and someone sets up some pieces of tin to form 4 walls, then someone else comes along and leans their tin or cardboard and trash bags, against the first family's makeshift home, and then it grows, until it is a large maze of pieces of tin forming rooms where entire families live, with no electricity or running water. This eventually forms a city within a city. The government doesn't approve of this, but again, these people are homeless, and have nowhere else to go. Our team to rice and beans to families living in one of these squatters camps. They asked the people how they could pray for them. They shared God's word whever possible.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010


Today the team spent most of their time in San Martin. They visited a home for individuals with special needs of all ages. The facility houses just over 100 residents and is horribly under-staffed. They were able to deliver much needed adult diapers and other supplies. This is always one of the most difficult days. The people at San Martin are so loving and such a blessing to be around. Unfortunately, they live in not-so-great conditions. The team also did puppet shows, crafts and all kinds of fun activities with the residents; many of which don't get to go outside on a daily basis.
This evening they are feeding homeless again. They will likely be providing meals for hundreds of individuals, many of which are children. Then, Wednesday, they'll be heading back to the San Martin area to visit a home that cares for HIV/AIDS children. Please be in prayer for their continued strength and for the children and adults they are ministering to.

Monday, April 5, 2010


Last night several members of the team went out with Kurt to feed homeless. There were more than 200 individuals they were able to feed, and most of them were children. Even though it was raining for most of the time, they were truly blessed to serve those in need.
A special thank you to Gospel Mission Church for their donation for food for last nights project...
Today the team visited CISNA, a former women's prison that is now a boy's orphanage. The conditions here are truly sad. The facility still looks like an institution, and the boys live like prisoners.
Russ made a special friend at CISNA today. He had caught a baby possum and taken it in as a pet. Unfortunately, it died while they were there. Russ commented, "I couldnt help but think that he lost everything because it was certainly all he had."

Many of the boys at CISNA were without shoes to protect their feet. The Starfish team went out today and bought hundreds of shoes to prevent these boys from injury and allow them to play out on the hot concrete! The boys were not just happy about the shoes, but to have something to call their own...
In addition to shoes, the team was able to share Christ with many boys who had never heard before. They presented puppet shows, crafts, games and other activities with the boys.

In addition to CISNA, the team traveled to La Casa de mi Padre today as well. They did Bible School activities with the kids, and had a short but wonderful visit. We hope to have pictures from that visit, with many familiar faces, tomorrow!

Please continue to pray for the team tomorrow. They will be traveling to the town of San Martin to work in the special needs orphanage. It houses over 100 severe special needs residents from ages 7 through adults. This is often the most challenging day for many and is sure to be emotionally filled as well.

Weeks like this could not come together without God's provision and your support. They are seeing so many blessings each day, and being blessed in return by the children. Thank you all so much for your continued prayers!

In His name,


A few bonus pictures!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Sunday...

Today the team was back at CIPI staying very busy! In addition to the Easter programs they put on, there were many activities throughout the day that they offered for the children.
I talked to Christan Flowers earlier, and here is what she had to say:

"Great day of special moments! Spa Day with teenage and nails done, girls lined up to have their hair done by Leigh Ann. Puppet shows for special needs

children and popsicles for everyone of all ages. Boys ages 7-10 played soccer and basketball all day with new soccer balls and basketballs provided by our team. Message of Christ and hope shared with everyone. Many teen girls crying and praying and clinging to team members when they left."

Tonight, some members of the team will be going out with Kurt to feed the homless. Please pray for their safety and strength during these hours. They will be able to feed hundreds of homeless children and adults in San Salvador this evening. They are currently experiencing thunderstorms which could make things a little difficult. Please pray for their stamina and boldness as they show the love of Christ to the homeless.

Continue to keep the team in your prayers as they move on to other orphanages tomorrow. They will be holding Easter services for the boys home at CISNA... This is a former women's prison that has been converted into a large, older boys orphanage. Pray that they would be able to connect with the children despite any language barriers or apprehensions. Pray that the boys would have open ears and hearts to hear what they have to say.
The team will also hopefully be visiting our friends at La Casa De Mi Padre tomorrow! Be in prayer for the children there as well as, Alexia, Patti and the other Tias, Tios & workers that this would be a wonderful week. So far everyone is safe, healthy and receiving unbelivable blessings through these new experiences. We will continue to try to update the blog daily. Sometimes the team has limited access to send them, so we appologize for the delays!
Stay tuned for tomorrow!
Thanks for following along!
In His name...

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Saturday... Love at CIPI

The team spent the day at CIPI; a government ran home for babies, young children, teen mothers, and special needs kids.

For some team members, it was a day of reuniting with old friends...
and for others, new relationships were started...
The special needs department at CIPI is always a special blessing. In the past we discovered that the children loved to go outside onto the patio, but it was very difficult for the workers to manage their wheel chairs and walkers.
This year, Starfish was able to pay for handicap ramps and railing to protect the special needs children. We also had special screens installed to help with insect issues. Today, the team spent time painting and finishing up the work... but don't worry, there was plenty of playtime too!
Spending time with the babies is always special as well. The understaffing issues at CIPI often leave a dozen or more infants with only one worker for shifts of 24 hours or longer. Teams like ours are able to come in, provide a break for the workers, and bring much needed supplies.

Please keep all of the precious children of El Salvador in your prayers this week. Pray also for the team as they continue to minister to children and adults of all ages. Tomorrow they will be back to CIPI for part of the day, where they will be leading the Easter services. Then on Monday, they will be leading services at a boys home as well.

Thank you for following along...