Dear friends of
Horses for Orphans
We have some really great news to share. Reginaldo Isaias Lopes (one of our Brazilian son's) is with us in Canada until February. We needed a miracle for his visa and we got it. God is awesome.
Richard, Reginaldo, Ingela and Heather in front of
Forest City Destiny Church, London, ON.
Reginaldo has lived at Betel Children's Home since he was 11 years old, and has been the leader of the Horses for Orphans project for already three years. He has worked hard and we felt to bring him to Canada to experience our home and learn English.
Our prayers were answered and Reginaldo's visitor visa was approved in near record time (2days!). He arrived at Toronto airport the day before his 22nd birthday.
We had asked God for the first snow to fall on his birthday and it did! It kept coming down and Reginaldo was able to make a snow angel and have a snowball fight with the Guse family who had previously visited him on a mission trip to Brazil. We are very excited to have Reginaldo with us, it is super fun.
Mattea, Isaac, Reginaldo, Josh (a real Canadian)
Reginaldo has been with us for a month now and you may think that he is very blessed for such an experience. That's true, but we are blessed even more. Being with him, we are learning so much about the heart of God and how much He loves us. It has been an amazing time of discovery for us, and we are beginning to really understand why it is important to spend time with the poor...
We wish you a very blessed Christmas, and a wonderful 2013 - full of encounters with the love of God. We pray that the hopes and dreams you have in your heart will become reality.
Much, much love,
Richard & Ingela Larsson Smith
The Horses for Orphans project in Brazil has now been running for 3 years. Many, many children from Betel Children's Home have enjoyed interacting with the horses during that time. Countless changes have taken place in their hearts through being loved and learning to love. By building a friendship with a horse and growing in communication skills, the children have felt the joy it brings when the horse is responding to their efforts.
In the year 2012 we were presented with many challenges, but they were far outweighed by the tangible love of God and the joy that His presence brought us. We had the privilege of experiencing God's provision and protection in most amazing ways!
Betel Children's Home is going through many changes and it is not yet clear, how many children will be able to keep living there. A number of the staff have left. We decided to give the 19 horses a break until we return in February and have turned 13 of them out onto 2500 acres. The 3 Lusitanos and the 3 foals are continuing to be cared for in the horse pasture next to the arena.
It is Christmas holiday at Betel now and most of the children have gone to visit any of their remaining relatives until the end of January. Only a few are staying at the Children's Home during this time of the year. One of them is Aurimar Vale Silva who will together with Welliton Couto da Silva take care of the horses until we return in February. Both boys have done really well in the last few month and have passed the H-Factor Qualification in Horse Handling.
We spent a little more than 3 month in Brazil this year. Taking many teams with us, we had an awesome time building deeper relationships with the children, teaching them horsemanship and English skills and of course hugging up on them lots. There is nothing better than to be loved by God and to give that love away to those around us.
Dear friends, thank you so much for your prayers and amazing support. We very much appreciate you!
Richard & Ingela and the Horses for Orphans Team