We drove to Crossett, Ar where we will be at 1stBaptist. We were also able to go visit the graveside of our daughter, Michelle, as well as Dottie’s parents. Michelle died in 1964.
Pastor Jamie had a funeral to attend and his wife, Trish, was ill so we tried to stay out of the way after dinner.
One of the most incredible stories that I remember is the story of a teenage girl who lived in a village far away from Casa. We will call her Mary. She lived in absolute poverty and a life filled with abuse. If I had not seen her myself I would never believed that a man could be so cruel. Her father punished her by hitting her opened eyes with a wire.
Her aunt from the city went to visit the family and when she realized the abuse she hid money and written directions to her home in Guatemala City. Mary was able to escape and find her aunt. That night she was sexually assaulted by her uncle. She went to the police and three of them assaulted her.
When she came to Casa she started school in first grade at age 14. After school she would not go to her dorm but rather to the baby dorm. I followed a little behind her and she sat in a rocking chair. Three toddlers sat on her lap. I did not say anything but she spoke. Her words were, “I never want these babies to feel like I felt”.
That evening she came to my house. I had a number of teens in the room so she came and sat on my lap. I hugged her. She said, “You are the first person to ever hold me.”
Today she is happily married and the mother of two.