Alzira is our first kid from the orphanage to now get married!!! She and her brother, Zaqueio, came to us after their mother could no longer take care of them. At that time Zaqueio was around age 14 and ended up in the streets where he was fending for himself and under the influence of people who were practicing witchcraft and doing other bad things. Alzira was about 17 and her mom gave her away to a much older man to be married. On the day the forced marriage was to take place, one of Alzira’s uncles rescued her and brought her to the house of another relative. Alzira was also mistreated at that house, so the family asked if she and Zaqueio could go to the orphanage, as they are related to Victor’s mom.
As soon as Alzira arrived at the orphanage everyone could see what an amazing hard worker she was. We gave her a position as a staff intern and she worked tirelessly behind the scenes without ever seeking praise or recognition. She excelled in school and tutored all the younger children in reading and writing. She worked in the kitchen, took sick children to the hospital, and led devotions. She was an amazing role model to the other kids and stayed patient and positive as she finished her education, even walking 5 km to school, each direction, at night. After 11th grade she was accepted into the teachers training college, which she graduated from less than two years later. A little under a year ago Alzira became a teacher in an elementary school in a village about two hours by chapa from the orphanage. She has been earning a living there ever since.
Alzira and Rodrigo first met each other when they were children growing up in the village of Murrupula. They found each other again at the teachers training college and stayed in contact even when they were placed in schools in different districts. As they began to fall in love their families met and gave them a blessing to get engaged and then married. Everyone is SO happy that Alzira was able to choose her own husband and marry for love.
This is our first orphanage wedding. We are so so pleased to see one of our girls complete her education, begin a profession, find a good Christian man, get blessings from family and church, and then get married. This is everything that we hope and dream for all our kids and hope this wedding will inspire the rest of them to follow in Alzira’s footsteps.
The feast! At weddings here the bride and groom sit alone at a table full of every dish they could ever want! Here they are eating grilled chicken, rice, the-best-ever bean soup, french fries, and all the good refrescos. (The reception was back at the orphanage.)
About to cut the wedding cake.
Carmina (Victor’s sister) and her fiancé Lucas. They are planning to marry this April and everyone in the family is very happy about it!
Rodrigo, Alzira, and Zaqueio (Alzira’s wonderful brother who is still in the orphanage).With the kids: Gizela, Rodrigo, Alzira, Graça, Leonora, Minoca, Ronilda, Cocas, and friend.