This #GivingTuesday, our goal is to provide concrete signs of Christ’s love to the women and children of rural Guatemala. We recently caught up with Fr. Maxi Charitable Derisseau, a CICM missionary in Guatemala and founder of the Bethany Maternal Child Center of San Benito Lachúa, and asked him about the needs of the women, infants, and other potential beneficiaries of the Bethany Center’s services.
We hope that you will be inspired to give generously to the Bethany Center--even if that means giving $5 or $10--and that, regardless of how much financial aid you can offer, you will provide these women and children with the most meaningful gift: your prayers.
What are the most pressing needs of the Bethany center?
At this time, we have three major concerns: First, to finish the construction of the mother-infant center, which we are building 125 km from the City of Coban, Guatemala. We’re about 75% done, but haven’t been able to finish the construction of the ceiling, floor, doors, windows, lights, or even bathrooms.
Secondly, we are trying to fund the education of the youth in rural areas of Coban. Right now, we’re sponsoring 60 students at different levels: elementary school, middle school, high school, and university. Before the school year ends, we need to pay for their schooling.
Thirdly, we need funds in order to continue providing food to the 120 children who come to our cafeterias each day.
How many people work in the Bethany Center right now?
Our personnel is entirely composed of volunteers. There are 13 of us taking care of the different services we offer, like the three cafeterias, selling goods at bazaars, the chicken farm, nutritional recovery for malnourished children, educational scholarships, and housing for school for students in rural areas.
If you received $3,000 for the Bethany Center, how would you and your staff use the money?
If we could raise $3,000, we would distribute the money as follows: 40% would go to the mother-infant center construction; 30 % would help fund our student scholarships; 15% would go toward maintaining our children’s cafeteria services; 15% would go toward improvements in the residential student program that we run.
On his blog, Fr. Charitable explains why he and his staff are undaunted by their current financial situation:
A journey of a thousand kilometers always begins with the first step. We trust that the Lord will travel the road with us and send people of goodwill to assist our missionary work; and his words encourage us to go forward, despite the obstacles. Thank you for your support .
Will you help us launch the Bethany Center this #GivingTuesday?