Zacualpa is a small but busy village in a mountain valley. The village is inhabited by both Quiché Indians and Ladinos (those with mixed European ancestry). The prevalent language is Spanish. Families in this village live in one or two room homes generally constructed of either wood or adobe. Although many of the people are farmers, the village contains several small, specialized stores, a body repair shop for buses, mechanics, plumbers, and many other small-town tradesmen. It also has a large open-air market which serves much of the area. Even with all of this, the poverty level is very high, and the children are very needy.
Hello! I hope you and your family are in good health and filled with God’s rich blessings. My name is Juan Gilberto Calachij Gomez. I live in a town called Zacualpa. I am 14 years old, and I was born on April 28, 2007. My father’s name is Gilberto Calachij de la Cruz, and my mother’s name is Maria Angelica Gomez Jimon. I have 1 brother and 1 sister. I attend school as a 7th grade. In my free time, I like to help my brother work in the field. My favorite color is black, my favorite animal is a dog, and my favorite dish is fried chicken. My older brother gave the evangelism team my information over the phone because of COVID-19; they are avoiding as much physical contact as possible to keep everyone safe. My father sadly passed away a little over a year ago. He was living in the United States and was murdered. For this reason, my older brother Marvin works as a farmer to help sustain the family. He works for our neighbor. My mother and my sister Wendy take care of the house. We are renting a room in a house for Q100 (about 14 USD) a month. It is located about a 1 hour walk (or a 10-minute bus ride) from the feeding program. The place belongs to a maternal aunt. We all sleep in that room (4 of us total). My aunt also allows us to use the kitchen to cook. We have electricity, running water, and a drainage system in the bathroom. As for my health, thank God, I am healthy. However, my mother is not. She had a surgery done on her thyroid 5 years ago. The doctors told her that she needs to be on medication for the rest of her life so that she can live. Our needs as a family are groceries. I am a member of Adventist Church. I am thankful for God’s blessings and love.
With lots of love,
Juan Gilberto Calachij Gomez
Translated by: Kalyan Marroquin / Missionary Intern