“Inside of these children is a great spirit. All they need is help.”
International Alliance Ministries is more like a family than a shelter—more like a home than an orphanage. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints partnered with Food for the Poor and CARITAS to bring clothing, food, and other necessities to Pastor Joel Peña and his wife. The Peñas have taken in many orphan boys and given them a home, a life, and hope for the future. Boys who ran the streets or were abandoned by their parents or abused find security under the Peñas’ care.
“Inside of these children is a great spirit. All they need is help. We are trying to help them become good men and women for tomorrow so hopefully they will make a better world for us to live in,” said Peña.
When Peña and his wife contacted CARITAS, they had realized their need for food for the children would quickly exceed their own resources. “I asked God every day to help us find our daily bread for these children,” Peña said.
CARITAS volunteers contacted members of Food for the Poor, who in turn contacted the Church to request a donation of clothing, food, and toys.
Andrea Vasquez, a social worker with CARITAS, said, “The purpose of working together with different churches, regardless of race, color, or religion, is to help the neediest, because that is the labor that Jesus Christ wants—that we work together for those who need it the most.”