Her Name is Máxima

Her name is Máxima. It means ‘she who is big’, and although the meaning of her name doesn’t at all fit her physical stature – more thin and fragile than anything else – there’s no more apt description of her spirit. A spirit she says has been gifted by a loving and merciful God. A…

Do They Even Want to Learn?

“But do they even want to learn?” she asked me, more than somewhat incredulous, the sound in her voice and the look on her face making me think that she had already formed an answer to her own question. We were half way through our nine hour bus ride from the city of Guayaquil to…

David: A Tale of Resilience

We have much to learn from the strength and innocence of children, don’t we? We so often see these little beings scurrying around and feel the strong urge to protect them at all costs from the evils of this world. We fear that the world will break them if given even the slightest chance. We see…

From the Flames

There are some stories that are just hard to write. I’ve come across a few of them over my time here in Ecuador and each time I sit down to try to put into words what has happened I find myself struggling to know where to begin. This is one of those stories. Does it…

A Small, Closed Wooden Box

It was the last place I wanted to be. Whenever it had come up in conversation, I would always tell people that I had never had to spend a night in the hospital. I would say it with that false sense of pride that comes with believing it had more to do with some exaggerated…

Smile

Smile, my friend, because when you do you’ll change the world. Perhaps you don’t believe me, and that’s fair, but remember that a smile is never just a smile. At least not the sincere ones. And the one I so often see spread across your face is as sincere as they come. Your smile is…

Solidarity – Bridging the Divide

A few days ago I posted about the devastating earthquake that ravaged Ecuador’s Pacific coast. It was only a minute long but the cost of the physical destruction and the loss of human life will mark this country for a generation. And that’s not hyperbole. The American city of New Orleans, for example, was brought…