As soon as I see the day’s first light
filtering through the window, I blink
away the remnants of my short sleep
and spring out of bed.
I’m not usually a light sleeper or a
morning person, but today I am. I can
hardly contain my excitement as the
rest of my family wakes up and begins
preparing for the day ahead of us.
When I begged and begged my
parents for a sponsor sister through
Compassion Canada, I never imagined
that just a couple of years later we would
be on one of the most remote and
impoverished islands of the Philippines
preparing to meet her. But here we are.
As I scoop my hair into a ponytail in
an attempt to combat the effects of
the hot, sticky air of the Philippines,
I wonder what I’ll say or do when we
come face-to-face with Florianlyn. So
far, I’ve only known her through letters
and a photo on our fridge. Before I have
a chance to think about this any further,
my mom comes into the room. “She’s
here!” she says.
I begged my
We rush outside to meet the van that
is pulling in. Before I know it, Florianlyn
is standing in front of us. The moment
is overwhelming as introductions are
made – we meet her mom and her
teacher from the Compassion
Child Development Centre where all
Compassion children attend weekly.
Florianlyn is endearingly shy and we
barely get a handful of words out of her
throughout the day, but simply being in
her presence is pure joy for us.
After spending some time at our hotel
sharing some gifts and a meal with Florianlyn and her mom, we take a bumpy
van ride to the local church, which is
home to Florianlyn’s Compassion Centre, where we meet Pastor Ben and the
staff of the Centre. We see how the staff
cares for each child in the Compassion
program individually, helping them gain
confidence in school, stay healthy and
– most importantly – learn about Jesus!
After that we head a bit further down
that bumpy road in the van to Florianlyn’s home. I’ve never seen such a small
THE DAY THAT Changed My
Life - ALySSA’S STORy