The plane that did a TOUCH- AND-GO
| Gabriel’s plane looked a lot like this one|
Gabriel last week was so excited to be able to purchase a little wooden plane for his upcoming birthday. It wasn’t much compared to American standards, just 10 soles, which is roughly $3 US dollars. I know what you’re thinking $3 dollars is not much. Most people spend that a day on a coffee each morning before work. But on a missionary budget like ours $3 dollars can be a stretch for us. That kind of money can buy the three of us an entire breakfast, and more. Needless to say Gabriel was reluctant to ask for the toy plane but stunned and overjoyed that I said yes. After all his 10th birthday should be special.
Gabriel carried that plane with him everywhere. To our home visits with the poor and outside every evening to play in the plaza with his friends. Tuesday we had to go to a larger town to pick up supplies and to make a few copies for our ministries. We were walking through the market and a mother pushing her son in a wheel chair stopped us. They were selling gum and Peruvian candies. The two of them daily wonder up and down the market to sell their treats in hopes to make enough to live for the day. As I was talking to the mother, I could over hear Gabriel say “here take it”, when I turned around he was giving his wooden airplane to the little boy in the wheel chair.
|The same kind of wheel chair the little boy was|
in which are very common among the poor here
My heart sank. I selfishly thought, how can I replace that plane! It was for his birthday and he just gave it away! Our missionary budget will not allow for us to purchase another, I thought quietly.
I finished up talking to the boys mother and by that time someone else had come to make a purchase from them. As we went about our errands in the market, Gabriel was so full of joy. I looked in his eyes and told him he was a special young man for giving his plane away. I asked him why he did it; His response was simple, he said “it’s what Jesus would have done.”
The little wooden plane you see in the picture is a lot like the plane that Gabriel received for his birthday. That little plane brought a lot of joy to him in the few days of having it; As the plane made a touch and go in our life’s we pray it will bring about the same amount of joy and love to it’s new owner.
This act of kindness is an encouragement to each of us to never turn away from the opportunities to give to those in need. To be a bold and courageous witness; Never fearing to give testimony to Jesus’s faithfulness.
I would like to honor Gabriel on his 10th birthday for being in love with the poor and for being faithful enough to serve them. For never hesitating to embrace living in solidarity along with them and for calling me on to sainthood.
Please pray for Gabriel in a special way today on his birthday!
“God Loves those who find joy in giving”
Pope Saint John Paul II
Karen, Julianna and Gabriel Del Castillo
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