Twenty Years of HOPE

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Two decades ago, two men boarded a Pan Am flight for Brazil. They had heard of the plight of street children there; international attention had turned its focus on Brazil after reports that these children were being systematically murdered by police vigilante squads. Jack Smith, his son Philip, and David Swoap had felt God’s call to do something, anything, for these kids, and so Jack and Philip had cashed in their airline miles to make the trip south. Not much of a plan, but a heartfelt conviction that every Christian had an absolute obligation to care for those Jesus called “the least of these.”
This week Hope Unlimited marks twenty years of ministry in Brazil. From three men with a conviction and obedient hearts, Hope has grown into a ministry touching the lives of well over 1,000 at-mortal-risk children — every day Graduates are building solid families and loving their neighbors — every day. Through the years, thousands of children have called one of our campuses “home.” Naturally, we will mark this twenty year milestone with the requisite celebration and speeches, but much more important, we will thank God once again for His faithfulness in using mere men to bring Hope to his little ones. We will also renew our commitment to a divine commission to transform the lives of children in desperate need.
Jack, David and Philip may be different from most of us in talents, and the specific call they heard is certainly not one that every follower of Christ experiences. But, without any question, every one of us is called to minister to the widow, the orphan, the sick, the hungry, the prisoner.
Join us in answering that call.
And as you do, our Lord will say, “You have done it unto me.”

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