It is that time of year once again. We look out the window seeing the beautiful colors of autumn overtaking the trees and let out a sigh of awe as we wonder at the beauty of creation. The leaves gathering on the ground signal a season of thanksgiving and the bountiful harvest reminds us to give thanks to the Giver giver of all good things.
At Casa Chirilagua, we are reflecting on the last year and stand in amazement at what has happened. Through partnerships, countless volunteer hours, prayers of friends and the generous support of our extended Casa family, we have experienced another fruitful year of relationship-building and have laid the foundation for emergence and flourishing of local leaders in the Chirilagua community.
Kids Club is stronger than ever with a confident, committed Kids Club Director serving her second year at the helm. She is supported by three thriving local leaders who are investing in Kids Club, getting valuable work experience, and participating in our new Local Leaders program. The parent committee is plowing forward with a slate of newly elected leaders. Mentoring is firing on all cylinders, transforming the lives of mentors and mentees alike. Weekly high school and middle school Bible Studies are up and running with the participation of 20+ adult leaders. And, the Casa Chirilagua Strategic Direction plan is going full steam ahead as we invest in these local leaders and put the building blocks in place to strengthen families as a top priority.
While we rejoice over the fruit of our various programs, we also celebrate the daily relational fruit we see in the community; relationships characterized by love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. We see this when a local leader chooses to respond with patience and kindness when hurt by the misunderstanding of a Kid’s Club parent. We bear witness to the fruit of grace, mercy and forgiveness displayed by a Middle School student when she decides to cut another student some slack, knowing it has been a hard year for her, and when a Kid’s Club student chooses to forgive from the heart. We see fruit as we learn to be patient with one another, to be gentle with another’s wounds, to be compassionate towards each other’s stories, and when we choose to love. This fruit, the fruit we encounter on a daily basis, is laying a foundation for the multiplication of local leaders who are confident, united, motivated, and empowered.
When we visit the pumpkin patch or the apple orchard, we walk away with the “fruit” of the season. However, the harvesting is not the end of the story. It is a new beginning. For when the seed contained inside is planted, it will beget an even greater harvest.
This is just the beginning at Casa! We are grateful for all the Casa family has invested to lay this foundation, and we look forward with anticipation to what is to come!