October 20, 2014

The Centrality of Christ

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A team of Canadian school teachers experience Nicaragua

(Story shared by Phil Beck.)

Our vehicle slowly made its way through the narrow streets of a Managuan neighbourhood until we stopped in front of a small wooden house.  The entire property was no more than 15 feet across and 40 feet deep.  Inside was a home that consisted of two simply furnished rooms – one a bedroom, the other a sitting room.  As we crowded into the sitting room, we knew we were privileged to have been welcomed into the home of Moses and his mother.

We were a team of Canadian school teachers who had travelled to Nicaragua to participate in EduDeo’s Discover & Learn program.  The Discover & Learn program is a unique learning opportunity for teachers across Canada to interact with teachers from one of EduDeo’s ministry partners.  Through school visits, classroom observations, and interactions with teachers, students, parents and community leaders, the team had the opportunity to grow in our awareness and appreciation of the larger world in which we live and the impact Christ-centred education is having in countries such as Nicaragua.

Moses is a sixth grade student at Bautista Libertad, a vibrant and growing school in Managua – Nicaragua’s capital.  Though young, he has overcome a number of challenges in his lifetime.  His mother shared that as a result of a childhood illness, physical disabilities have left him wheelchair bound.  As a single mother, caring for him has had its challenges, but Moses has been determined to succeed.  After some negative experiences in public schools, Moses was enrolled at Bautista Libertad.  There he has thrived!  He has developed a network of strong friends who look out for him and assist as needed – such as carrying him up the stairs to attend classes on the second story of the school.  Moses also started attending church at Bautista Libertad.  He was warmly welcomed into the youth group. 

Though her original goal was for Moses to attend a school in which he was accepted, Moses’ growing faith and excitement for the Bautista community slowly drew his mother into the church community.  She has since become a Christian. 

Despite the many blessings, Moses and his mother know that they face many other struggles and challenges…yet they are excited about the possibilities that a strong Christian education offers.

As a team we had many opportunities to interact with teachers, parents and student to hear about their journeys in education.  From larger group discussions with schools, lunch with students, interactions with ACECEN leaders and facilitators the trip was a great opportunity to learn and grow. 

Team member Amanda Baker notes,

“It is clear that Christian education is making an impact in the communities.  We heard stories of behaviour improvement, academic excellence, inclusion of kids with disabilities (kids who public schools don’t want) and support for parents to raise their kids.  Even the government recognizes that kids in the Christian schools are outperforming those in the public schools. The centrality of Christ in all of life and the value of Christian education was very evident.  It was clear they want to impact the next generation for Christ.”

For more information about Discover & Learn trip opportunities, please check out the team’s blog at www.edudeo.com/HANDS or email Phil Beck.

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