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El Salvador Mission Trip
El Salvador can be breathtakingly beautiful, and heartbreakingly sorrowful.
Poverty is a way of life for many there, and opportunity is scarce.
Missionary Kenton Moody and his wife Elsie moved to El Salvador almost five years ago to try to help.
"There's no support system. There's no safety net here in El Salvador. If you're down, you're down, and I really felt like I could do something to help pick people back up. I can't help the whole country, but I can help one person. I can help one family. I can help one group of students", says Kenton Moody.
That's what they're doing. Along with their son, Christopher, and other families from the States, the Moody's have been building a school and living community called "Hosanna".
Building homes is not their ultimate goal. It is changing lives.
Moody says, "this girl right here that we're fixing her house for her, she doesn't have a dad. Her dad rejected her, he left her, and she's one that calls me dad and writes me notes, and to do be able to do that is the most fulfilling thing in my life."
Seeing these homes is wrenching, but the smiles on the kid's faces has the opposite effect.
"In the United States, so many times we think we have need, but in reality, our needs are based on what we want rather than what we really do have to have to exist", adds Moody.
The Moody's believe that simply giving a place to live or some food won't make a lasting change.
They bring hope to these kids by being encouragers, advisors, parents, or just friends.
Moody says, "we have really instilled in the message, 'you have value. You're important to us. You're important to God. You're important to other people. And you're intelligent. You can do it. You can make it', and just giving that message enables people to do more".
And the best part of it all?
Kenton Moody says, "the best part is telling somebody that you love them, and they respond with love in return. That's all I want, and to make a better life for them".