CAA Mission Helps Children in Mexican Orphanage

A group of 47 Columbia Adventist Academy (CAA) students, staff and sponsors spent spring break at El Oasis, a village for orphaned and abandoned children in Baja, Mexico, run by International Children’s Care (ICC).

At El Oasis, they built a fence, painted the church and some homes, and poured concrete for the school's sidewalks. But the most important reason for going was to bring love and joy to the children of this orphanage. In truth, the CAA team members were the ones who received love and joy.

Before leaving for this trip, each student and sponsor had the chance to choose a little "sister” or “brother” to adopt for their time at El Oasis. They brought gifts for their special kids and had opportunities during the week to spend time with these little ones. One day, the CAA students created matching T-shirts for themselves and their little sisters and brothers. The kids loved the shirts so much, they wore them every day—even under their school uniforms.

On the last night at El Oasis, the children played the CAA girls’ basketball team, and then everyone joined hands for prayer. The trip director and ICC development director, Doug Congleton, and the El Oasis construction director, Daniel Ixcot, prayed that each person in the circle would be reunited again in heaven. “The kids were the best part—I cared about them so much by the end of the trip, and it was sad to leave them,” recalled sophomore Anya Davis. No one wanted to leave.

Jerry Wallace, CAA junior, said, “I pray that my experience in Mexico will help me to be a more sensitive person and put others before myself. The trip helped me realize the material things in life are meaningless, and we should be building up treasures in heaven.”

One fully understands what the true meaning of life is when he or she is put in a situation that is totally different from normal, everyday life. I went on this mission trip two years ago, and I couldn’t wait to go back this year. Only this time, God opened my eyes to a bigger picture of truth. Those children have almost nothing. And what they do have, each one is willing to give away. Several CAA students were given gifts from their little brothers or sisters.

As these academy students arrived back in the States, the amenities of life seemed so unimportant. Sure, it was nice and comfortable to have all the things they were used to, but there is something those children have that is so much better than worldly possessions or pleasures. They aren’t worried about the latest fashion or music—all they care about is what Jesus did for each of them.

June 01, 2004 / Oregon Conference