Eugene Cho

i left my heart in guatemala

As most of you know, Minhee and I spent several days in Guatemala last week to do some research and networking for our personal growth and for ODW. Even despite my brief time and limited exposure, I think I left my heart in Guatemala.

Guatemala is a beautiful country but like every place, it has both examples of beauty and depravity. During our few days there, we spent the majority of our daytime with an NGO called Lemonade International and our evening with a host family who treated us to some amazing Gautemalan food and company. For a few hours on one day, we had a chance to visit Antigua.

Here are some pictures:

Bullet holes in so many places in the “urban ghetto slum” we were visiting called La Limonada. Zones 4, 5, and 6 has the 4th highest murder rate in the world. Here’s an example of one bullet hole in someone’s door.

This picture is from a photographer from Lemonade International as I didn’t take a good shot of the barrios that give a perspective of  La Limonada.

Beautiful children. Seriously…they had so much joy. [Notice another bullet hole in the background]. Lemonade International was running two after school programs in 2 barrios. Minhee and I enjoyed our time in the classes. Keep the kids off the streets – away from harm, violence, and drugs.

Okay, I was trying to get my photographer thing going on since I’ve mentioned that I want to enjoy photography as a new hobby. With the exception of the first picture, the rest were taken in Antigua.

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10 Responses

  1. YEAH! I got to read this whole post in my RSS Reader! WOot WOot!

    And such beautiful pictures to boot!

  2. koo says:

    you’ve definitely got an eye for it! nice stuff PE!

  3. danderson says:

    I understand that 80 percent of Guatemala’s rural indigenous population lives in severe poverty. It’s an incredibly beautiful land with great people who are industrious and work very hard. Lake Atitlan has been a very large tourist destination, including many “hippy” types from the Europe and the U.S. There are pockets of wealth, but the overwhelming majority live out their lives in quiet desperation.

  4. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by lemonadeintl: RT @EugeneCho: I ain’t no @EstherHavens @jeremycowart @coreyhage or @chenleo but here are my pics from Guatemala: http://bit.ly/dthLS2

  5. Jeff says:

    Tita is an amazing women and her team of teachers is awesome. The work they are doing there is a true witness to the the grace and love of God. My wife has been there 3 times and I have been there 1. We support Tita and her schools by sponsoring 2 girls through Lemonade International.

  6. Doug "dad" Holderman says:

    Eugene, I enjoyed being in the Quest 9:15 service with my son Nick. Thanks for greeting us! Quest is a great church and God is present and at work in a big way. We celebrate His grace with you, Doug

  7. Eugene, thanks so much to you and Minhee for investing your “vacation” in a community we love so much! Our team was honored to host you and we look forward to the possibility of a partnership with ODW. Regardless we are very excited about the work you are doing and look forward to supporting ODW and spreading the word about the grassroots movement. Great news on reaching the $100K goal!!

  8. […] i left my heart in guatemala Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)Craig S. Keener on the Historical Jesus and the GospelsSailhamer’s Magnum OpusCraig Blomberg In Search of the Historical JesusThe End of the Road for the Historical Jesus Quest […]

  9. […] been an eventful couple months already with a trip to Haiti and Guatemala but each year, my church’s Elder Board graciously allows me to travel a certain amount of […]

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One Day’s Wages

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"He must become greater; I must become less." - John 3:30 We have to remind ourselves of this truth every day lest we forget:

Our greatest calling as followers of Christ is to be faithful. Not spectacular. Not glamorous. Not popular. Not relevant.

Be faithful.

PS: Also, it helps to get some Vitamin D especially if you live in the rainy Northwest Thank you, Brooklyn, for the reminder. Umm, @jlin7 is a Christian but he wasn't very Christlike with me on the basketball court. He muscled me into the paint, dunked on me, mentioned my momma, and then said, "Stick with preaching." Just kidding. Kind of.

If you haven't heard, Jeremy Lin is donating his one games wages (approximately $140,000) and an additional $100 for every 3 pointer made to support Girls' Empowerment and Education through @onedayswages. That game is this Friday vs the Boston Celtics!

Join his campaign as he's inviting his fans to donate just $7. - http://onedayswages.org/jlin

Did you know that 32 million girls of lower secondary school age are not enrolled in school.

Did you know that every year of secondary school increases a girl’s future earning power by 20 percent.

Did you know that if all girls in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and West Asia had a secondary education, child marriage would fall by 64 percent.

We can't change the entire world but we can impact the lives of one, few, and in some cases...many.

#jeremylin #jlin #linsanity #onedayswages Don't be held captive to either praise or criticism.

Know who you are.
Know what you're about.
Know WHO you serve.

The answer to who you serve makes all the difference... It's the day after International Women's Day - and it's still important to celebrate the contribution of women in our lives, society, and world. As we honor women all around the world, I'm also reminded of how women and children are those who are most deeply impacted by injustice - especially poverty.

Sadly, I have witnessed this reality in too many places. ​In 2012, I traveled to a remote area in Eastern Kenya as part of a @onedayswages response to a famine that struck the Horn of Africa region. This famine impacted nearly 13 million people and according to some sources, took the lives of about 250,000 people. During my trip there, I had the chance of meeting many people but the person that still remains in my memory was a Muslim woman named Sahara.

She was so hospitable in inviting us to her small and temporary home. During our conversation, I learned that ​Sahara traveled 300 kilometers (a little under 200 miles) – some by cart and some by foot – as they sought to escape the worst drought that has impacted East Africa (Kenya, Somalia, and Ethiopia) in the past 60 years.

This is not a misprint.
200.

She traveled about 200 miles on cart and foot. ​And all along, she was ill. If you look closely ​at the photo, you might notice the large lump in her throat - likely a large cancerous tumor.​ She did not travel alone. She traveled with her husband who I was not able to meet because he was staying with one of his five other wives in this polygamist community.  She did not travel alone. She also traveled with her six children – the youngest being about 1 and the oldest being around 8. She had just given birth to her sixth child when they began her journey. Her youngest was severely malnourished when they arrived to this new settlement in a town called Benane. 
Sahara and her children all survived this journey. They survived because she persisted. 
In honor of Sahara...and so many other women who keep...keeping on.

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