STORIES

STREETS FOR A BED

Edson recalls life before arriving at Home of the Good Shepherd...

 

"I was always on the streets and didn't want to stay home because my mom was always drinking.  I would go out with my brother all the time and we would find a place to sleep in the streets or corners for days at a time before going back home.  We stole church offering envelopes and asked people for money for needy families, some would give us money allowing us to survive longer without going back home.  With the money we would buy food, drugs, and cigarettes.  One day Child and Family Services found us and asked if they could take us home.  We didn't want to go back there, so they took us to a passage house where we stayed a bit but would often run away.  Then Child and Family Services brought us here to Home of the Good Shepherd.

We were nervous when we arrived because my mom would often threaten to give us away or send us to a juvenile jail where we were told bad things would happen to us.  But once we actually were living here in the cottages it was really nice and the kids and house parents were very nice to us.

There were many rules which was hard for us at first because we used to live on the streets and did whatever we wanted.  But after a while we got used to the rules and then also realized that it was better for us with a routine, and to eat at the right times, and have a schedule for each day.

When I came I had never heard much about God at all and never cared.  Here is where I learned about God and one Sunday evening I decided that I would also give my life over to Jesus ... then I made the decision to be baptized this past March!

One day my brother and I went back to our town to visit the Child and Family Services workers and we saw our little three year old sister and four year old brother.  They served us hot dogs there and my little brother and sister were eating it so fast and then we were told that the two were often left home alone and hungry.  My brother and I decided to talk with the workers to have our sister and brother come to Home of the Good Shepherd as well.  We also discovered that my mom was very pregnant, so when my baby brother was born he was taken from my mom right away and also brought to the Home along with my other littler brother and sister!

I am happy that they are here with us!

For my future I hope to finish my studies, and try to be a doctor or a dentist.

It is sometimes difficult to not see our mom but we are praying that she would change her life and get to know Jesus.  We appreciate so much that we are learning things here like how to be a person of character, and to obey and respect others, and learn manners ... all things that I didn't learn at my own home."

*Names and photos have been changed for the safety of those mentioned.

Now eighteen years old, Andreia has graduated high school and successfully completed the Home's skills and training in hair and aesthetics.  She is developing into a good mom, learning to care for her little girl, Evilin, who is now three years old.

Evillin continues to live in the care of Home of the Good Shepherd, with visits during the week and sleepovers at her mom's on most weekends.

Adreia was baptized last year and speaks openly about what God has done in her life and how He has watched over her and Evillin throughout their journey.

The oldest, Ademar, lived at the Home for four years, graduated high school and is now serving in the military.

Randy and Carla had the privilege of attending his training graduation ceremony prior to him being stationed.  Please pray for Ademar as he continues to serve the Lord where he lives.

Admire is the youngest sibling at fourteen years old and continues to live at Home of the Good Shepherd.  He is walking through the usual teenage struggles but is trying to work hard in school and has also been baptized recently!  Pray that Ademiro would realize the continued plan that God has for his life.

These three siblings and Evillin continue to have a strong bond and their own personal experience with God.

Please pray for them as they continue to be a close family (since they do not have any close relatives) and that they would be encouraged in their faith every day.

*Names and photos have been changed for the safety of those mentioned.

THE SILVA'S STORY

Abandoned by their mother, their father looked after the two younger ones, while rejecting the oldest son - who because of his cleft palate was left to live under their shack / house, eating food that his younger siblings snuck to him.  Child and Family Services removed the children and after various horrific abuses, sad circumstances and rejection they came to live at Home of the Good Shepherd.

At age fifteen, Andreia became pregnant prior to coming to the Home.  She had various sicknesses which could have been passed onto the baby for serious and chronic health issues and experienced the challenges of being a teenage mom while continuing going to school.

MATTHEUS' STORY

When Mattheus arrived at the Home with his two younger brothers he was eleven years old.  They had many struggles in their family prior to arriving - but after some time they began receiving visits from their mother.  Their father was given visitation privileges after their mother committed suicide.

 

During one of the visits back to the father's house, the youngest child was abused resulting in cancellation of all visits.  Since then, no other relatives have shown any interest in the boys.

Mattheus has gone through some rebellious times and struggles, but has made a real turn-around this last year!  He has decided to make good choices along with trying to have better friends.

Mattheus was asked what has changed in the years he has been living at the Home and he said that along with having physically grown, he has also changed his attitude and behaviour, which he believes is a result of God working in his life.  He recognizes that he needed to learn to be obedient and respectful to establish guidelines.

Mattheus says that it was here at the Home where he learned about God and His Word.  He likes reading the Psalms because they speak to him.

Mattheus is now seventeen years old and in grade seven (His education being greatly affected by life's many upheavals).  He still dreams of being a professional soccer player.  In five years he hopes to have a job, be living in his own home and have a family.

Please pray that Mattheus would continue to do well and to grow in his walk with the Lord.

*Names and photos have been changed for the safety of those mentioned.

 
 
 

Home Of The Good Shepherd provides an environment where its students are cared for, educated, and encouraged to reach their full potential.