Jesus told a story long ago about a man who was planning a wedding feast. At first, he invited "the right" guests, his wealthy and privileged peers. But they all declined the invitation by giving lame excuses. Some sounded like, "I'm washing my hair that night... Sorry." And so the host decided instead to invite everyone and anyone. He invited those who were sick, suffering and lowly in every way. People who offered nothing to him but their presence and willingness to celebrate. They came and had a rocking good time.
Right now, there are more than fifty incredible poverty alleviation projects that have been designed and partially funded in communities across El Salvador, Nepal and Guatemala.
Local churches partnering with ENLACE maximize their efforts by connecting strategically with local organizations and local volunteers which provide both valuable resources and labor. These churches have learned how to bring everyone together to create projects that solve very difficult problems such as the need for clean water, waste management, adequate shelter, and food and income security. All we need to do is match their donations.
Celebrating ENLACE’s 25th year means celebrating the Power of With. That is, what is most significant about this milestone for us is that for 25 years we have had the privilege of walking WITH churches as THEY walk WITH their communities to bring about profound change. While ENLACE encourages and equips churches, providing technical support and some project funding during the seven to 10 years in which we walk alongside them, all of us at ENLACE know that the church and community leaders are the ones who, despite facing incredible challenges and daily struggles, live and breathe sacrificial service. As a result, thousands of impoverished people are experiencing better, safer, and healthier lives of economic and spiritual stability.
ENLACE has always relied on the power of volunteers with big hearts and visions. Since the very beginning, three of us met in a choir robe room at a local church in San Salvador. Two of us were volunteers. This ratio has remained rather consistent even as the organization has grown exponentially.
Back in early 1993, as the idea of ENLACE was just taking shape, we knew we wanted a logo that reflected our values.
In 2017, your generous contributions helped us to continue to equip churches to transform lives in El Salvador, Nepal and Guatemala.
2018 marks ENLACE’s 25th Anniversary. What is most significant about this milestone for us is that for 25 years we have had the privilege of walking alongside churches as THEY transform THEIR OWN communities. ENLACE has encouraged and equipped, to be sure. Our staff works tirelessly on a daily basis coaching and supporting hundreds of churches’ efforts. But all of us at ENLACE know that the church and community leaders are the ones who, despite facing incredible challenges and daily struggles, live and breathe sacrificial service. As a result, thousands of impoverished people are experiencing better, safer, and healthier lives of economic and spiritual stability.
ENLACE has empowered church coaches all over the world to help churches engage with their communities since 1993.
2018 marks **ENLACE's 25th anniversary**, and we thought some of you might like to know about a few independent sources that talk about what ENLACE has been doing over the years. These scholars are highlighting the fact that a growing number of Pentecostal churches are engaging in community development activities and that they are in effect contributing to broader social change. They also suggest that ENLACE has played a vital role in preparing and equipping these churches to work with community associations and government entities to develop effective solutions to poverty.
This month in homes around the globe, families are decorating and lighting their Christmas trees. In fact, "trimming the tree" is often its own ritual, one that merits a dedicated time in which family and friends gather to pile on ornaments and lights, popcorn and cranberry bunting, and thinly ribboned "icicles."
If you are partial to a real tree, you know how important it is to find one that is fresh and healthy. Dry and sparsely branched trees are not only fire hazards but aren't ideal when wanting to showcase beautiful and plentiful decorations. The best trees, the ones that can hold up throughout the holidays and into the new year, are those sturdy ones that had been deeply rooted and nourished.
This is a great metaphor for what we have seen in our work. As ENLACE approaches its 25th anniversary, we've had the privilege of being a part of something amazing. Over and over again, we've seen that once local church members take on their role as servant leaders, the before and after contrast in their communities, is breathtaking.
In a few days' time, people all over the world will commemorate two Catholic feast days, All Saints and All Souls, with exuberant parties, celebrated with special foods and dances, and quiet candlelit vigils, marked by contemplation and prayer.
The history of these days is fascinating, but having grown up in a Protestant household and community, these celebrations were not a part of my religious or cultural experience. For me, it wasn’t until November 2001 that I was able to see the power that these remembrance days could have.
Maria is a 49 year-old, single mother of five daughters. She and her family have struggled to make ends meet for as long as Maria can remember. Like most of her neighbors in Sirigual, a remote village located in the dramatic mountainscape of El Salvador, she has only a 3rd grade education and lives a subsistent life. Her family lives in a small, simple home and collects water from a nearby river for drinking and bathing, which is also where they wash their clothes.
Yay, it's September! Kids are in school, and Autumn is in the air! It's a golden time of busses and no. 2 pencils; of old fashion Pee-Chees and pumpkin lattes. What's not to love?
Hmmm... Like you, I can think of a few things not to love.
How about grouchy mornings and the dreaded lunch-box scramble; the cold and flu season that starts all too quickly; and the science projects that rely on macaroni noodles and copious amounts glue or switch boards and tiny light bulbs, all requiring a parent (and possibly two) to complete.
If you're already overwhelmed, you're not alone. There is one thing we can take off your list.
ENLACE is offering to sign off on Community Service Hours for your child. As a U.S. non-profit, we can provide you with a bonafide option.
And it's easy. Just join the Pair Your Potty campaign by Friday September 15.
Your kids can really make an impact by raising funds for a Life Saving Latrine, health education and ongoing support for a family in an impoverished community in El Salvador! Once the kids have put in the hours raising the funds, email firstname.lastname@example.org to sign off on the hours.
It takes just minutes to sign up as a Doodie Director and we will sign off on any corresponding service hours.
Be among the first two to respond and receive a vintage Golden (Age) Pee-Chee. Totally "Stranger Things" worthy.
Click here at PairYourPotty.org then breathe in, breathe out. One less thing on your to-do list.
Antonio and Maria Caravantes and four of their 11 children have lived in Chantusnene, El Salvador for 17 years. Like most of their neighbors, they never had enough income or expertise to build a proper toilet and instead dug pits near their home. As a result, the water table in Chantusnene had become extremely contaminated.