Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos

martes, 4 de marzo de 2014

Ser familia: To Be Family

What is NPH? What do they believe in? What do they do? 

All these questions can be answered in this video below. It is the single best video to showcase our international family and what makes us special. Please take the time to watch it, you won't regret it. (Plus there is a brief appearance by your's truly). 

A special congratulations goes out to my friend Hunter Johnson who filmed and edited this video. He visited 9 countries, spent months filming and editing to make this video a reality. Magnificent work buddy! 

For more videos by Hunter and to learn more about each of the homes see the right hand side link to "Conoczca NPH"

domingo, 17 de noviembre de 2013

Darse cuenta: To realize

Disclaimer: The following post is a personal piece. It is not an attempt to preach or persuade, it is an honest attempt for me to process my own thoughts and discover possibilities about my own future. I do find it worth sharing however and I hope it will help articulate part of the way I have grown and changed since coming to NPH.

To say I have learned a lot here would be such a huge understatement. It is completely impossible to do a thing like NPH and leave without being changed. One of the things I can’t help but notice is how difficult it is to be passive when poverty becomes personal. Hearing the word poverty often brings many images to mind. Right now poverty might call to mind images of the Philippines after the awful storm that has ravaged the country. Poverty might call to mind various scenes of “third-world cities” with half-built cement houses, brown rivers and massive slums. However, how often does the word poverty call to mind a face, name and story; how often does it call to mind a person.

I know personally, it will be impossible for me to return to my former life where poverty was a word used in classroom discussions about low-income schools or the decline of rural America or some distant country in Africa. I write none of this to preach or to condemn. I write because I can’t not speak about something that I see constantly. I can no longer cease to think about the implications my year here is going to have for the rest of my life.

Now, when I can’t think about poverty without thinking of the children I work with here at NPH. Before anyone gets upset, I don’t mean that I see the children in their poverty. The opposite in fact is true. Here at NPH our children have a dignified life with so much more than just the necessities, they have not simply clothes, food, education and health care. They have birthday parties, weekly mass, they have the opportunity of higher education, they have hope that the future will bring them more than there past. So what I mean when I say that I can’t think about poverty without thinking of these kids is that the word poverty is a word that now describes the conditions that drove a desperate woman to abandon her child in circumstances so horrific I don’t feel comfortable sharing them here on the internet. The word poverty is a reason for the work NPH must do everyday. The word poverty describes the enemy we are trying to fight. The cycle we are trying to break.

When poverty becomes personal, when it ceases to be something hidden away from us and when we wake up and stare it down in the face everyday the only option is to act. I believe people are fundamentally wonderful, brilliant beings. When people can see what the word poverty means, when they know the person behind the story they want to help. The want to help because somewhere deep down, we all know that as people we are connected to each other, bound by something greater than race, religion or country of birth. We want to help because it is our duty as human beings to reach out to each other and heal the wounds of our neighbor, because despite the illusion of independence we all know that one day we will need somebody. No one is immune from pain and suffering. Not one.

As I force myself to think about the reality of my return to the U.S. I find myself afraid. I am nervous because here I have something to fight against. The work I do makes me angry, frustrated and sad. The work I do brings me joy and peace. Coming home means a new search. It means listening to my heart and finding my vocation. It means uncertainty; it means challenges, over connectedness and possibility. Coming home isn’t the right thing to do and it isn’t the wrong thing to do. Coming home is what I am going to do and somehow I have to believe that God will guide me to my next step. I have to have hope that my “lifesong” will sing of his love for all people and for his mercy. I hope that because my hands, eyes, ears, mouth and feet are his to use that I will not let him down.

P.S. Don’t miss the new video below!

Sanar: To heal

Below is a short video featuring Fr. Rick a priest who works with NPH in Haiti as well as on numerous other projects. He is an inspirational man who will stop at nothing to help people in need. Please take the time to watch him speak about his projects in Haiti.

If the video doesn't work try: This Link