Category Archives: Walk2gether

Jun 9 2011

Watch a video of the Walk2gether finale

Our communications team has done an amazing job covering the last days and moments of Walk2gether as it finished June 6 in Valparaiso, Chile. We’re excited to share the following video with you!

Walk2gether, a nearly 8,000-mile walk through 12 countries to show our solidarity with families living in poverty, has ended. But itís not too late to help CFCA President Bob Hentzen reach his goal of getting 8,000 children sponsored! Check our Facebook page for more details.

Jun 7 2011

Check back for more coverage of Walk2gether

Sheila Myers, a member of the CFCA communications department, sent us this report of Walk2gether’s finale.

She was at yesterday’s celebrations in Chile marking the end of Walk2gether, the nearly 8,000-mile CFCA solidarity walk through 12 countries.

Please check back in the following weeks and months for more about Walk2gether, including a video of the end of the walk!

Note: CFCA President Bob Hentzen will also be featured on a Twitter chat starting at noon CST on June 20. Anyone interested in hearing from him may tweet their questions to @CFCA using the #cfcachat hashtag.

Jun 6 2011

Walk2gether solidarity walks around the world

Walk2gether solidarity walks in Uganda and Colombia

Left is a CFCA community in Busunju, Uganda, participating in a solidarity walk with Walk2gether on May 21. Right is a CFCA community in Antioquia, Colombia, in another solidarity walk May 26.

Update:†Walk2gether, the nearly 8,000-mile journey by CFCA President Bob Hentzen and others,†has crossed the finish line in ValparaÌso, Chile! See our news report.

The walk is Bob’s labor of love to shed light on families living in poverty and the benefits of child sponsorship.

For many CFCA communities around the world, Chile is a long way away ñ particularly if you’re living in Asia, Africa or even Central America.

That’s why they have hosted solidarity walks of their own! Here’s a list of recent and upcoming solidarity walks and celebrations around the world:

CountryAct of solidarity
GuatemalaSince Walk2getherís launch Dec. 29, 2009, CFCA communities in Guatemala have continued solidarity walks on the 29th of every month. They are preparing a special celebration June 24-26, with a solidarity walk June 26.
El SalvadorThe CFCA staff in Santa Ana has organized 26 solidarity walks all on June 5 from different parts of the country. Each walk will end with a Thanksgiving Mass and festivals.
  • A number of CFCA communities in the Ocotepeque project are taking turns to host solidarity walks from June 1 to June 7, culminating in a short walk and thanksgiving Mass in the parish of San Jose Ocotepeque.
  • Sixteen CFCA communities in the Santa Barbara project walked June 4 in solidarity and watched Walk2gether videos and other community presentations.
Costa RicaThe CFCA office is preparing several activities for the end of the walk, including a solidarity walk, drawing and poetry contests, a thanksgiving Mass and other cultural events.
VenezuelaThe CFCA office in Barquisimeto expected about 300 people to participate in a Mass, solidarity walk of about 19 miles (30 kilometers) and cultural activities on June 5.
  • Solidarity walks are taking place in the Cartagena, Quibdo and Cali projects.
  • The Manos Abiertas project will feature a community meal on June 30 reflecting on Walk2gether.
  • The Antioquia project had a walk-related gathering June 4 with cultural activities and refreshments.
  • The Bogot· project presented a handmade scrapbook to Bob featuring walk photos and well wishes from its staff members.
  • The Guadalupe project will have a solidarity walk June 25.
  • The Merida project had a solidarity walk May 29.
  • The Santa Catarina project had a field day celebrating the end of the walk May 28.
  • The Cuernavaca project will feature a “chain of solidarity actions,” or a pay-it-forward system where sponsored friends do a good deed, big or small, for another person and have a festival gathering today (June 6).
Dominican RepublicCFCA staff members will serve meals to the elderly in a nursing home along with other cultural and recreational activities in solidarity with the walk.
PhilippinesOn June 5, an estimated 130,000 people participated in solidarity walks all across the communities served by the five CFCA projects in the Philippines.
MadagascarSponsored friends and parents of CFCA’s three communities served in the Antsirabe project will walk toward an open space in South Antsirabe for a prayer and worship service to celebrate the end of Walk2gether. The combined number of miles walked will be about 11 miles (17 kilometers). About 5,000 people are expected.
  • The Meru project is planning a one-day activity to show solidarity with Bob and the walkers today (June 6).
  • The Kisumu project had a solidarity walk of 18 kilometers on April 29.
  • In Nairobi, the project expects about 200 people to come to the Nairobi Arboretum for a solidarity walk.
UgandaThe Kampala project had a solidarity walk and did community service May 21.
May 31 2011

Walk2gether passes from desert to fertile valleys

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Bob Hentzen recently wrote to the CFCA headquarters from the road in Chile. You can see the full update on his Facebook page.

Sixty-nine days in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile have been very inspiring.

Some describe the desert as Tierra de Nada ni Nadie (Land of Nothing and Nobody). On Walk2gether, we have had a much different experience.

In the silence of the long treks, I find myself comparing the survival struggle of the young desert plants to the daily struggle of our sponsored members and their families, as well as those waiting for sponsorship.

These humble families honor us with their invitation to walk with them from the desert of their isolation to the fertile valleys of their hope.

As I write this, we are walking in a zone of olive trees, vegetable gardens, cypress trees and vineyards. I see signs of wildlife along the road, as well as domestic livestock sporting woolly winter coats.

Knowing full well that itís winter ahead, we stride directly into the cold winds, moving south into the lives of Godís humble people. We are usually able to take our first steps of the morning around 3 a.m.

The Camanchaca fog is cold and mysterious, yet through it all, we know that the Southern Cross is ever present to guide us, as is Godís love and your love. I walk in awe of natureís colors and harmonies as she responds to centuries-old Pacific currents and Antarctic airs.

All of this causes me to reflect and pray in gratitude for this experience. Iím grateful for the opportunity for growth through relationships with my co-workers and the dear families who live here in Chile and in the other countries where CFCA serves. Exciting days are with us as we approach the finale.

Loved ones from our natural family and our CFCA family are beginning to gather in Chile as we near Valparaiso. Believe me, you are helping us all to rise and begin anew each day of our journey. Please know of our love and thanks.

May 29, 2011

May 13 2011

Zamboanga families walk in solidarity with those in Chile

Walk2gether is in its final country, Chile, but that hasn’t stopped people in the Philippines from joining it in spirit!

Zamboanga solidarity walk with Walk2gether

The CFCA community in Zamboanga joins with Walk2gether on a weekend solidarity walk.

Over the weekend, two CFCA communities in Zamboanga conducted an early-morning solidarity walk of about 9 miles (15 kilometers).

More than 1,000 sponsored friends and their families participated.

“In this experience, we are just having a taste of how Bob and the walkers do it every day,” said Alan Partosa, project staff member. “This walk is also giving thanks for the CFCA community and Bob’s walk for journeying with us in the daily battle of life.”

After the walk, CFCA staff members in Zamboanga showed a video of Walk2gether, and mothers and children reflected on the morning’s experience.

“A sponsored youth, Joseph Arthur, shared in the group, ‘CFCA is love. We can give without loving, but we can never love without giving,'” Partosa said. “I have heard this already, but for a 15-year-old boy to speak it from his heart is a different thing for me.”

Chris Palmer, project specialist for the Philippines, said he was excited to hear news of the solidarity walk.

“We really see the families walking in solidarity with the greater CFCA community,” he said, “even though they’re spanning such great distances.”

May 12 2011

Walk2gether finishes trek in the Atacama Desert

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Bob Hentzen recently wrote to the CFCA headquarters from the road in Chile. You can see the full update on his Facebook page.

It is a pleasure to share with you these scenes from our walk through the beautiful and formidable Atacama Desert of Chile.

On March 22, 2011, we entered Chile from Bolivia at Chungara (more than 14,000 feet in altitude) in the awesome snow-capped Altiplano Chileno.

Iím happy to tell you that with Godís loving care and your belief in us, we have walked the entire length of the Atacama Desert in an unbroken line.

For us, it has become a place to pray, learn and appreciate.

We are right on schedule for the finale of Walk2gether in Valparaiso. We are preparing to walk and celebrate with our 6,000 sponsored members and their families during the first week of June.

We eagerly await those of you who will be traveling to Chile in person and in spirit during the next few weeks. Our youngest son, Robert Jacob, arrived on May 6. Naturally, Cristina and I say that Jake is a great walker and a great help.

Know of our thanks and love.

May 9, 2011

May 2 2011

Walk2gether embraces desert vulnerability

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Bob Hentzen recently wrote to the CFCA headquarters from the road in Chile. You can see the full update on his Facebook page.

Fortified by the conviction that God lives, we walk deeper and deeper into the Atacama Desert, known as the driest place on Planet Earth, and we stay there day and night.

We have found that in a 24-hour period, the temperature can change by 50, even 60 degrees.

Cars, trucks and buses speed through this desert like itís something to be feared and avoided. In high winds, their wake can literally blow us off the road.

We embrace our vulnerability.

Our small steps in the immensity of the Atacama may not seem like much. Yet down deep, in the very fiber of our being, we know that we are advancing toward something of incalculable worth: the 6,000 struggling CFCA families in the area of Valparaiso, Chile, and the community of compassion among ourselves that it will take to get us there.

Let me assure you that you are very much a part of all of this. Know of our love.

April 29, 2011

In other news, the Christian Science Monitor recently reported on Bob and Walk2gether. Check it out!

Apr 19 2011

Walk2gether continues in the wilderness, trusts in Godís loving care

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Bob Hentzen recently wrote to the CFCA headquarters from the road in Chile. You can see the full update on his Facebook page.

Heartfelt greetings from the Atacama Desert of northern Chile.

In most of the countries on Walk2gether, we have been able to find a ìsafe havenî for the nightóor better said, for a few hours of the night, before beginning anew at 2-3 a.m.

Looking back over the last year and three months on the road, I can say that the wilderness would have been more restful than many of the places we have stayed.

Itís true that cities generally have what we need in terms of supplies, water, fuel, access to telephone and Internet. Yet, on the down side, many times their noise level and feel are like something out of Mad Max.

If by the grace of God we could well channel the nightly partying energy of the youth of Latin America, we would have an enormous force for good in our world.

Much like they were in the deserts of Peru, impressive are the distances in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile. At times, the road is so narrow and the tandem semis so wide and fast that we have to go “all terrain.”

Whenever we can, we opt to pitch our tents where the coastal road has led us. Last evening, after we had our camp organized within meters of the ocean and supper underway, walkers began a search among huge boulders for scraps of firewood.

We discovered that we were camping near an open burial ground. Carabineros (Chilean police) say that there are many osamentos (bones) along these Pacific coasts – most probably remains of people fallen in battles between Chile, Bolivia and Peru-Guerra del Pacifico (1879-1884). May they rest in peace.

We are delighted to have Paul Pearce with us. Paul is CFCAís director of global strategy. He is a great walker, and he also gives Israel a break in driving the camper.

In the grupo corazon (core group), on this two-week rotation in the desert, we have the loving care and company of two Chileans, Irma and Georgia.

As we enter La Semana Santa (Holy Week), we pray in gratitude for each of you.

Bob (April 14, 2011)

Apr 12 2011

Walk2gether window: Sponsors who attended the launch

Christina and Morgan attended Walk2gether’s launch in Guatemala on Dec. 29, 2009. Here is an excerpt from Christina’s reflection, written shortly after returning to the U.S.

“I wanted to sponsor a girl in Guatemala around the same age as Morgan (my youngest daughter) so that Morgan could be a part of this relationship.

Morgan and Candelaria

Morgan and Candelaria meet in Guatemala.

I was hoping that she would develop a relationship through the mail, write letters and one day meet this sponsored child, and it would be an automatic bond.

That’s exactly how it happened. Our sponsored child, Candelaria, is a year and a half younger than Morgan.

We sponsored her when she was 5 years old. (She is now 10.)

Every time I wrote to Candelaria, Morgan wrote or colored a picture for her. Often when I came home from work, she had written a letter or colored a picture and informed me I needed to do the same so we could get them in the mail.

We had been planning a mission awareness trip through CFCA for a couple of years. We could hardly wait to meet Candelaria and her family.

We arrived on a Friday and saw her for the first time on Monday. It was a beautiful reunion. She and Morgan hugged, but were shy toward each other at first.

It was only a matter of minutes before they were holding hands.

Candelaria is the oldest of four children. Her mother and baby brother came with her. They had to travel about an hour to see us.

Rosa, Morgan and Anna Maria

Rosa, Morgan and Anna Maria.

Native Mayan language and Spanish are the languages of Guatemala. We had an interpreter, but sometimes words were not needed (and I did pretty well with my Spanish).

Many Guatemalan people are descendants from the Mayans. Here’s a picture of Morgan with Rosa (14 years) and Anna Maria (10 years), two of the sisters from a home he visited. Morgan was 10 in this picture.

Look at the difference in their sizes. Everywhere we went when the local children learned how old Morgan was, especially the girls, they stared and called her a giant.

Last, but definitely not least, Bob Hentzen was on the mission awareness trip with us. He was there to begin his walk from Guatemala for Chile.

This is one reason we chose this week ñ to be part of this history-making moment.

The walk began on Dec. 29, 2009, and I was there taking pictures along with everyone else on this 8,000-mile journey through 12 countries.

Everyone on the trip was invited to join the walk.

I wanted to leave at 4 a.m. with all the rest, but Morgan was not up for that and I could not leave her.

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Apr 1 2011

Walk2gether enjoys natural beauty in Chileís extreme north

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Bob Hentzen recently wrote to the CFCA headquarters from the road in Chile. You can see the full update on his Facebook page.

A heartfelt greeting and abrazos from the extreme north of Chile.

It is extremely beautiful as we walk the foothills of snow-packed volcanoes and listen to the call of gentle ducks on clear Andean lakes.

It is also extremely challenging as we do our daily marathon at 14,990 feet, all so very natural under Chakana (Aymara for Southern Cross), as we greet the wild vicuna and a pair of swift desert foxes at first light.

With all the affection and tears of our CFCA Bolivian families and coworkers, it was hard to say farewell.

They slept little in order to accompany us to the Chilean border at Tambo Quemado/Chungara.

But what a CFCA team awaited us in Chile. They are prepared, generous and flat-out fun. To serve the CFCA families in Valparaiso and surrounding areas, our Chilean admin team rotates a few staff members into the walk every 15 days.

In addition to the Chilenos, we have our Grupo Corazon (Core Group) of Israel, Ricardo, Cristina and me.

We look forward to the proximate arrival of Paul Pearce, CFCA director of global strategy.

A special welcome to each of you walking with us in fact and spirit. Know that we carry you in our hearts.

I am deeply grateful for the thoughtful and encouraging messages received on the occasion of my birthday.