A Note from Brian..
In June 2018, I met Rodolfo and his wife, Saraid. They were sharing their vision to build Hogar Genesis, a children’s home in Iquitos, Peru. Unlike an orphanage, this home’s mission would be to raise children in a loving family setting, children who are abandoned and neglected, children in desperate need of hope. Rodolfo said that when he started a few years ago, he had $6 in his bank account. This was just the start. As he poured out his heart and stories, something stirred inside me. How could I share in this passion… in this drive to make a difference in someone’s life… one child at a time. I did not know how, but this was clearly something I wanted to be a part of.
Since then, we have been partnering with them. In September 2019, Sarah and I had the privilege of spending a week with them. A week that changed our world. I hope that their story can impact your life as much as it has impacted us.
Brian and his family travelled to Iquitos in Peru at their own expense a few years ago to assist Rodolfo in his ministry, experience life amongst the local people, and create a general awareness of their living conditions.
Read Brian’s diary entry from 2019..
Around 10 p.m., I was in the middle of one of the poorest areas of Peru in Iquitos; Rodo and I had just visited one of the city’s drug holes in the middle of the night. Sarah had already returned to the house with Saraid and the kids after dinner. Words cannot describe how this seemingly crazy and dangerous experience will forever change my whole perspective on life.
We went past a police station and entered a pothole-filled street in Secada. I met with a few stares, all probably wondering who was invading their privacy. Rodo pointed at a guy wearing an orange shirt – he was to sound the alarm if the police came by. A shirtless teenager approached us as we parked our motorcycle on the dark side street leading to the drug holes. I learned later that he was one of the kids Rodo tried to get out of the drug hole a few years ago. He and Rodo hugged and conversed. He was going to be stationed all night outside selling drugs.
We then started walking towards the drug holes, shaking a few hands along the way; they all seemed to know Rodo, whom they addressed as “pastor.” Rodo explains that he had worked with many of them in the past in the safe house (more on that later – I have been compiling a few videos and interviews to put together a short documentary). I got a glimpse of one of the rooms of the drug houses. The air was so thick you could barely make out the inside. There were around ten men against the wall or on the ground – all high. We couldn’t enter any rooms; we had to buy to consume to have access. After tonight I can say with certainty that what is depicted in the movies is nothing compared to seeing and experiencing with one’s own eyes.
Rodo was doing what he did best. Smiling, joking around, sharing the love of Christ, and pouring into the lives of the ones who approached us with every step we took. This commitment, this passion, this drive, this compassion, this selflessness. Wow. Of course, he was tired. We were out all day in the drug holes of Belen and making visits in the morning. And yet, at this late hour, here he was. He was being Rodo. The last few days have been such a blessing with this man of God. This amazing husband and dad. This friend. What an honour.
A few steps down the street, prostitution houses. We counted five or six of them. They all had disco-coloured lights and a few girls at their doorsteps, inviting locals and tourists alike. A few motorcars stopped in front of them. As I peeped inside one of them, dozens watched explicit porn on the big screen. They were all yelling and cheering. I had never seen anything like this.
So many equally impactful stories from today. So happy to be here. Good night. Buena noches friends and family.