Field Note #125: The Joy of Community in Colombia


What impacted me most about my time in San Jose, Colombia last week was not the labor of fixing wells, the lack of sanitation or walking to get water. What made a lasting impression on me was seeing the joy of people in community. Wine To Water is all about serving in community, and the people there made me understand why that is such a big deal.

It was not possible to be sad or upset while I was in San Jose. The people there exuded joy and happiness. Everyone there was so joyful, the only people who ever were upset were babies and young children who cried occasionally. The people welcomed us into their community. Yes, we were foreigners and outsiders, but we were treated like family by the people there.

One of the things that I loved seeing the most there was how the people engaged in community activities every day. Every afternoon, kids and adults would gather to play soccer or volleyball. They welcomed us to play with them, and it was a ton of fun. I spoke no Spanish and they spoke no English, but they were so inviting and asked us to take part in their games.

There was one boy who I will never forget named Caping. He smiled and laughed more than anyone else I have ever seen in my whole life. Almost everything made him laugh. I could not imagine anything making him sad or upset. He was so happy, and joyful, and it was amazing to see. I have prayed that I can be as joyful as him, though that is honestly an impossible goal.


- Fouad