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Pedro & Celena: From Tragedy to Blessing

Pedro is one of several fathers in our church who sometimes works for Agua Viva Ministries helping John with construction and maintenance. Like many poor families in Agua Prieta, Pedro built his family a home out of salvaged materials: wooden pallets, rusty sheet metal, scrap lumber, cardboard and plastic.

During the Christmas holidays, members of the Michigan work group gave Pedro a ride home from work and met his two young children and wife Celena who was seven months pregnant and not feeling well. The familyâ??s only bed was wet from overnight rain and the home was cold. They made plans to spend the night with another church family.

The next day, while Pedro was at work, team members donated materials and built a water-tight roof on Pedroâ??s home. Pedro and Celena were amazed. A week later the church ladies had a baby shower and gave the family a baby crib filled with baby clothing, diapers, food, etc. The family was very happy.

Then, in the early morning hours on February 23, tragedy struck. Pedro and Celenaâ??s house burnt to the ground. John says,

â??It was of the mercy of the Lord that He spared each of their lives. They were sleeping in the back room when someone came up to their house and yelled for them to get out. They had to go through the room that was on fire to get out. All Pedro could do was grab his 2 kids and get out. The inside was all cardboard and it went up very fast. They weren't able to save anything. This is a photo of the pile that is left. Rosemary and I were there this morning trying to help them. We got them some clothes, blankets and other things. We couldn't help but question why this happened. But we trust that the Lord knows and will work it out for good.â??

â??I was impressed that our church family also cared for them. Many of them are giving things to them to help them out. One family said â??I have a bed,â?? another said â??I will give them a stove.â?? Others opened their homes for shelter. Maybe that's what the Lord is showing us. That he provides for his children using his people. That really impressed me because these people don't have much and yet are willing to give what they have. I know each one of you is impressed with that when you are here. And now we really see it again.â??

After this message from John and Rosemary went out by email, many hearts were touched. Ontario supporters Gerald, Hieno, and Ken decided to do something about it. They raised funds, traveled across the USA to Agua Prieta, bought supplies and spent three days building Pedro and Celena a new home! On February 8, the family moved into their new home (or as Pedro called it â??a palace.â??) The family is in a state of awe. Pedro jokingly told us that Celena is very careful about them not scraping the floor with the new chairs because it will mark up the floor plus ruin the new chairs. She is also keeping the plastic covers on the chairs and keeps reminding them not to sit on the chairs with dirty hands or dirty clothes. Celena said they have never been able to buy new things so she is very grateful for every item.

On behalf of the family "Gracias y Dios los bendiga".
On behalf of Agua Viva Ministries, "Thank you...God bless You!â??

Posted Sep 28 2010, 11:47:14 AM UTC