Contemplating our next trip to Nicaragua I am really optimistic
about our team this year. It is smaller, seems more focused on the
mission, and everyone seems to have more of a sense of purpose and humility
I simply cannot believe four years have passed since my last once-in-a-lifetime chance meeting with Nicaragua's president and wonder what the political climate is now, if it is as toxic as our own, and if the Sandinistas have achieved what they so hoped for Nicaragua, and what they so hoped Obama would do for the world. But enough about politics; we put our hopes in mere men and mortals and wonder why we are disillusioned and disappointed. We have aspirations for Something higher but seem so completely powerless to realize them.
My own future work in Nicaragua is becoming clearer; starting a bilingual school in an area with no public school, where currently the children wile their youth away in no productive learning or work or preparation for adulthood. La Chispa. I hope to ignite a spark in one small community, like Planting Hope's founder Beth Merrill, a role model for facilitating a community's self-actualization without yanqui condescension. Friends and neighbors is what we all should strive to be, without presuming to be "helpers.". We can't and aren't going to "fix" anything, and we should get that out of our heads right away so we can have a truly rich exchange and value people for who they are.