Written by Kids Adelante Volunteer Katie Woodard
Just over a year ago I had my first interaction with the Mission Adelante family. I quickly realized that this family I'm now privileged to be a part of is a beautifully unique one. Mission Adelante truly is a place where everyone is welcome, no one is excluded, and differences are celebrated. Although my assigned "role" is serving the children at Kids Adelante, I continually find that they also serve and bless me! As we study God's word and seek to become more like Jesus, we're all finding a sense of belonging. This sense of belonging is characteristic of the Body of Christ. "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." (Galatians 3:28)
My husband and I moved to the Mission Adelante neighborhood 6 months ago and I currently work part-time as a substitute teacher in the district. A few weeks before Christmas, I was subbing in a kindergarten classroom. Near the end of the day, students were packing their bags and preparing to go home. One student saw my wedding ring and asked where I got it. I told him that my husband, Josh, gave it to me. "Josh?" he replied with great curiosity, "Like Joshua!?" I said, "Yes, like Joshua!" Immediately, his eyes lit up and he boldly proclaimed "Joshua 1, dot dot, 9..." A huge smile spread on my face because, you see, memorizing God's Word is a key part of our kids' programs at Mission Adelante. Whenever we recite verses, we use our hands to make dots to represent the colon in the Scripture reference. (Joshua 1: ← dot dot) I knew this little boy didn't come on Thursday nights or I would have known him, so I gathered that he must be part of Refugee Kids Club. I asked him if he knew my friend Miss Laxmi. With shock and delight, he said "YES!!! Do YOU know her!?" He then pulled out his medal he'd just received from awards night and told me all about his beloved friend, Miss Laxmi, and we were instant friends. You see, even outside the four walls of Mission Adelante, a family is growing and people of all different nationalities and backgrounds are finding belonging because of Jesus. He is the great unifier, the perfect Father and our constant hope.
Do you want to make a difference in a kid's life? Mission Adelante's Leaders In Training (LIT) program needs volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering, please visit their website at www.missionadelante.org/kids.