The following story is about Maria and her siblings. One night during a heavy rainstorm, a mudslide destroyed their house and took their mother from them. Donations from Compassion Responders like you enable our local church partners to respond to large-scale crises that impact millions, like the global food crisis. But sometimes, disaster affects just one community like Maria’s. With your help, the local church and Compassion were able to offer emergency food relief, new clothing and financial help. Read on for more.
Maria and two of her siblings were at church the night it all happened. A storm hit hard in their small village in northern Guatemala. The rain was torrential and had been for days, so the center staff told them to spend the night at the church because it was not safe to walk the sloping streets of the community.
Olivia, Maria’s mother, was sleeping at home along with her three youngest children: Liliana, Cristina and Ariel. She became worried because the rain wasn’t stopping and water was running down the hill beside the house.
Suddenly, a mudslide swept down the mountain behind the house. The first room to be hit and buried was where Olivia and Liliana were picking up some of their belongings.
Back at the church, Maria and her brothers were beginning to panic. Their calls to their mother’s phone went unanswered.
The neighbors managed to enter the house and dug out Liliana, who was covered up to the neck, but they couldn’t find her mother.
The news ran through the town fast, and the church’s and center’s staff were alerted.
Liliana, Cristina and Ariel survived that awful night, but sadly, Olivia could not be rescued from the mud. Sorrow and grief filled the family and the small neighborhood.
A funeral and a burial took place the next day. The center, the church and the common council helped the family with the expenses. In the following days, the center was able to provide the children with emergency food relief to help them survive. The family’s grandparents welcomed the children home.