The Big Island’s Economic Crisis
I just read an article on the news website 14ymedio.com about how the inflation on the Big Island is seven times higher than the increase in salary. This is reflected in the poverty that our familia faces in a greater measure daily. The article says it’s the worst economic crisis that the people have faced in the last 70 years, which is an astounding assessment of the state of this Island full of so many beautiful people.
One of our pastor friends wrote me this week and shared an example of how the economic collapse is affecting the families.
This testimony came from the wife, Maria, of one of our pastors on the Big Island. (It’s translated from Spanish, and it might be a little rough, but I thought it would give you a better idea if I left it that way) “My cousin gave birth 4 months ago. The arrival of a baby into the world brings great joy to all the families in the world. It is also like that on the Big Island, but unfortunately it also brings some sadness when the family begins to consider how they are going to feed her, to dress her, to have the articles for her personal use. The baby’s name is Sofia. Yesterday her mother told me while crying that the only soap that they had at home was to bathe the baby girl and since she bathed her in the patio, she left the soap outside of the house, and someone came by and stole it . A bar of soap in Camaguey is selling for 270 pesos (which is about $1.90 USD). The average salary on the Big Island is only $25 a month.
Life is more and more expensive as the cost of living continues to rise, families are poorer every day. Hunger, misery and lack of resources have caused some people to start stealing, there are already many examples on a day-to-day basis that are seen in each town, situations that have never happened before. Maybe some think? Why cry for a bar of soap? The sad reality is not the soap, it is that how this mother is going to bathe her 4-month-old girl, how can she maintain her hygiene in a place where it is very hot and that there is also no pest control, where dengue fever is worse every year and contagions are growing.
When does the time come to choose? If she buy a 270 peso bar of soap, she won’t be able to buy a pound of rice to be able to eat something during the day. Because her family is made up of 3 children and 2 adults. She had no choice but to talk to pastor Luis and tell him what had happened to her. Luis only had two bars of soap at home and there are 3 who live at home. We do not hesitate to share a bar of soap with her so that at least in their house Sofia would have something to bathe with.
This leads me to think how many people outside this Island have more than one bar of soap in their homes? How many people who have two would be willing to share with one? How many people cannot travel to this Island, but can support Christian and non-Christian families with their prayers and the kindness by extending their friendly hands?
Perhaps you think, “what I can give is very little,” but a little makes a difference to those who have nothing. To those who have the most, it is always good to be generous and remember that each work of your hands giving food and shelter to the poorest is the work that Christ left for us to do.
The sad reality for Sofia is also the sad reality of many families on this Island.
We pray to God that he will touch the hearts of men and women to extend their hands to give a piece of heaven to those on the Big Island. God bless in EVERYTHING to those who with outstretched loving hands dry tears and give away smiles.
Thank you because just for taking your time to read what I have written you have dried my tears and revived the hope that you can be a beautiful instrument in the hands of God on the Big Island.”
Extend Your Hands to Help Those in Need!
The church is growing and many are coming to Christ, despite all the suffering. God is doing a great and mighty work on the Big Island. Many families have a meal on their table, and a bar of soap, because of your willingness to extend your hands to help. Thank you for the vital role that you play. TOGETHER we can make a difference!
Dawn and I would like to ask you to prayerfully consider extending your hands to give a piece of heaven to those on the Big Island. You can support one family for $25 a month. Make a Donation Today.
Thank you for joining us in prayer, and for considering making a gift to help our precious familia.
In His Grip, Dave
P.S. Help take the gospel to the Border, the Baja and Beyond