Phone: (786) 845-9985

2012 – August

I Wouldn’t Trade it for Anything in the World

“The tickets are too expensive,” I told Rosa as she searched online for air travel to and from Peru this past month.  “The children need our help desperately, but how can we supply for them if the tickets alone cost THAT much?  So much will be used on airfare that we won’t have enough to provide for their needs.”  It was a painful dilemma for us, as we stared at skyrocketed prices for the trip we wanted to take to minister to the children at Santa Maria Children’s Home.  Thanks to God, however, as we continued to look, a “special deal” came to our attention, which would get us to and from Peru at HALF the regular fare price!  “Grab the tickets quickly!” I told Rosa, and we gratefully purchased the tickets for our monthly travel to Peru.

When we arrived, I could see why God had provided the means for us to get there.  There in the orphanage we found little Eber (written about in June’s newsletter of this year) sitting alone, shoulders slumped over, head bent very low, with a downcast demeanor and a heavy heart.  He was missing his mother.  Rosa gathered him up into her arms, kissed him, held him close, and began to minister to him the love of God…and the love of a mother.  The nostalgia this little seven-year-old boy was feeling for his mother soon gave way to the deep love and tenderness he was receiving from someone God had sent all the way over from the United States…just because Eber is THAT special to our Father.  Eber stayed close to both Rosa and I the entire duration of our time in Peru this month.  We gave to him a mother and father’s love, and by the time of our departure back to the U.S, Eber had a smile on his face and a heart filled with the love of a mother and father again.  That is our work…to put a smile on children’s faces…and with that work we are very content in our hearts.  It is the lens through which we see all of life and our motivation for each decision we make; we just want to minister to as many children as we can and give them the love of our Father.

Not only was the trip timely for ministering to Eber, but also when we checked the orphanage pantry, it was nearly bare.  We were able to fill it up again with needed supplies for their daily meals…and to spoil the children with items they never get otherwise.  Because of the tight economic situation, the children do not usually get eggs for breakfast, or butter at all with anything.  Nor do they ever get chocolate, strawberry preserves and other sweet spreads for bread, hot chocolate drink, mayonnaise for their potato salads, or dressings of any sort.  But with great joy they received all of these items from us this month and they “ate like kings/queens” because of the blessings of God we could provide.  Thank you for helping us to supply them with these items.

We also ministered the Word of God to the children, the directors, and the employees.  The directors of the home are Catholic but the orphanage does not have the covering of the Catholic Church; they are independent.  The director and staff are sincere, sacrificial and dedicated, but they want our help not only in finances; they need our help in ministering the Word of God, as well.  They like how we teach the Bible to the children and really explain to them from the Word of God.  This past trip, I spent an hour teaching the whole group of staff and children the simple truths of how to read and study the Bible (and our great need for it!).                                                                              

Lastly, we were able to pay for all of the orphanage’s utilities, to pay for repairs to 10 wheelbarrows used for daily chores and agricultural instruction to the children, and to pay an additional $1,000.00 for much-needed window repairs.  There is still $2,000.00 worth of repairs needed to fix the remaining windows, and it is our desire to fully cover that cost for them this next month.  Will you help us finish that work?  We must have your response and involvement to see it happen.

As I close this newsletter this month, I want to say thank you all for believing in this ministry, and for doing what YOU can do to see it continue and expand.  Together we can reach more and more children who are in need of the love of God and the message of His hope.  Please stay financially involved with us this month, and remember us in your prayers; children like Eber are depending on it.

For the children,

Tony and Rosa Rivera

Homes of Refuge International

“Hello, everyone, this is Tony and Rosa’s daughter-in-law, Genel.  I want to take a brief moment to share with you some words that really touched my heart this week.  While driving with my father-in-law the other day we began to reminisce of the Venezuela and Honduras years and the various people that have been such a dear part of this beautiful ministry down through the years.  I was tenderized in heart as we recalled the sacrifices so many have made financially to carry this work on and to ensure that very needy children were rescued and changed through the Home of Refuge.  And then I began to ask him questions about the work in Peru.  I know my father-in-law went through a terrible season of pain over the last several years when the homes in Venezuela and Honduras were overrun by greed-driven people, but as he spoke of Peru I recognized that in him is still the same burning vision that caused him to sell his business nearly 17 years ago so that he might give his whole life over to rescuing orphans.  I noted once again that this man I deeply respect and have looked up to now for 20 years is a man willing to give his ALL…and he will, till his last breath…so that children can have hope and their suffering can end.  Our discussion continued in the car as we drove and then he said some words through a choked up voice, and I will never forget them.  Things haven’t always been easy, and my in-laws don’t have the worldly possessions that most parents have accumulated over a lifetime.  But it doesn’t really matter, if we think of it through eternal eyes.  ‘I wouldn’t trade what we are doing now for anything in the whole world,’ he said.  And I know he meant it.  His passion and dedication expressed through that statement made me want to do more than I have done: to give more, to pray more…so that this amazing work of reaching children might be even more powerful than all the memories the former years have created.  I just wanted to share this with you, and ask if you, too, would allow their example to stir in you a desire to make an even bigger difference in the future than we have made in the past.”  |  email:

P. O. Box 228314  |  Miami, FL  33222  |  786.845.9985


Tony and Rosa are very faithful, reliable, honest people.  They are the hardest workers we have ever seen; their leadership qualities have encouraged many people to help others.  Whatever Tony and Rosa decide to do, they do with excellence and perseverance. They are great people and we are privileged to know them.

Ed and Mona Shirley
Mountain High Christian Center
Conifer, Co.