Gaston & Catawba

Mission trip to Peru shows what's really important

A group from Mount Holly's First Baptist and Hickory Grove Baptist churches, along with people from Hickory, Concord and Avery County, recently returned from a mission trip to Peru, where they spent a week doing construction work at an orphanage and holding Bible school for the residents.

The group, headed by Hickory Grove's Charley Craig, consisted of 20 people, ages 13 to 67, who left on June 12 and returned on June 21, according to Lancy Rhyne. Rhyne, who was among those who made the trip, says some families in Peru can't afford to care for their children.

Rhyne says the group made the trip to help Scripture Union, an organization founded during the 1970s by Paul and Marty Clark that runs orphanages in several towns in Peru.

Rhyne says she was amazed with the positive attitudes of the boys at the orphanage, who have very little in the way of material things.

“They are just happy to have a roof over their heads, food to eat and a mattress to sleep on.” She says it is common to see 6-year-olds sitting and coloring right beside 16-year-olds.

Many draw scenes from the Bible. Rhyne says that malnutrition causes many of the boys to look younger than their actual age.

“Some who look to be about 7 are actually 14,” she said.

She says that the boys are given three suits of clothes, which they must care for, and that they all share in the chores, regardless of age. Rhyne says their orphanage was in Puerto Alegria, deep in the jungle and a 90-minute boat ride from the nearest store.

Rhyne says that their trip showed them what was really important. “It makes you realize that material things are not important. These kids are just happy not to be on the street.”

For more information, you can write to Union Biblica, AV Bolivia 180, Lima 12, Peru.