Josefa is a mother of nine children, a grandmother of two, and a widow — all that and only 35 years old.
About one year ago her husband began to have leg and stomach pain but they couldn’t go to the hospital because they didn’t have money for treatment nor did they realize how serious his sickness was. After a few days he died in their home at only 38 years of age. They still don’t know what was the cause of his death.
After her husband died, someone told Josefa about a place called ASELSI where she could find help for her struggling family. She went to ASELSI and entered her fourteen-month-old daughter, Angelina, in the Milk Program. Little Angelina only weighed 15 pounds (well below the third percentile on a weight scale for babies this age.)
After eight months in the program Angelina had only gained 2.75 pounds, so I (Chrisi) met with her at the ASELSI Milk Program where I serve each Thursday morning. I talked with her about different ways she can help her daughter gain much needed weight. She told me that she can’t put extra formula powder in the bottles because there wouldn’t be enough to last the month and she doesn’t have the money to buy more.
Josefa has never been to school, but she knows how to work. She works seven days a week…when she can find work as a house helper. She will work from 8 to 4:30 and earn 20 Quetzales (a little under US $3). She leaves her eight kids with her oldest daughter who is 20 years old and has two kids of her own. Even on a good week when she can find work every day she only makes about $2o a week for all 12 of her family to live off.
Josefa’s 20-year-old daughter is separated from her husband and lives with her mother. I don’t know the details, but Josefa said that her son-in-law is a very bad man and told me that her daughter is not with him because he burnt their house down almost a year ago.
During our conversation, I asked Josefa if she had ever made Jesus the Lord of her life and she said, “No.” She said that her oldest daughter is an evangelical Christian and that she had been thinking of checking out her church.
We saw an open door and asked her if she would like to make Jesus her Lord and Savior. She said, “Yes.” So we led her in prayer and watched our new sister turn her life over to Christ. Praise the Lord that today, one more has been added to the Kingdom.
We arranged for Josefa to get extra milk to help her little Angelina get a jump on her weight gain and to encourage Josefa that God is already watching out for her.
Please pray for wisdom and strength for the huge responsibility that this sweet young mother and grandmother has on her.