Some of you know that my favorite charity in Atenas is Hogar de Vida, a children’s home for abused and abandoned children. I contribute or participate in limited ways. In April 2018 a group of Senior Adults from First Baptist Nashville came for a week work project that I joined and helped facilitate. You can see some of the 2018 photos in my gallery.
Matt is the director of the children’s home and I just got a message from Matt which I think you can see at the link. In short:
A youth group with adult sponsors from Matt’s home church in Omaha came to do a week’s project just like we last year. And just like us, they had a “tourist day” where they went to Jaco for the beach and ziplining (just like us). But unlike us, the teens wanted to spend time in the ocean where Costa Rica has many warning signs about “riptides,” “undertow” or “rip currents” that can be quite dangerous. Well, 5 of the group got pulled into the riptide and underwater. One did not survive. One of the adult sponsors and mother of one of the teens drowned. Matt has of course handled everything lovingly and professionally. But it is horrible for a family, a church, a group of youth, and the children’s home here, especially difficult for Matt. Your prayers are requested and appreciated. And the photo above is of Jaco Beach where it happened.
Sometimes pura vida has its ugly side and riptide drownings is one of those.