A manicure. A new dress. A meal in a nice restaurant. A fun party. These are things that happen in my life on a regular basis. I tend to take them for granted and if I’m honest…feel entitled to. One week in El Salvador can cure that attitude quickly. The girls that attended the quinceanara last night didn’t take any of those things for granted. In fact, each of those things when added together made for a night they will remember for the rest of their lives.
The quinceanara was a dream come true for the girls who attended. It was a night that celebrated them. We celebrated the fact that they are princesses and daughters of the king. We celebrated their worth and beauty. While we adorned them with outer beauty. It was their inner beauty and value that we were celebrating. We wanted them to know they are not forgotten by their Heavenly Father and will never be forgotten by us. He knows each of them by name and knew in advance every detail that the quinceanara would require. He knew exactly how many dresses we needed, how much make up and nail polish would be used, and how many curling irons & straightening irons it would take.
The party was over the top! Once the music started, the dancing did not stop until the last song was played. There was a live band followed by a Batucada, a Brazilian style samba drum line, complete with dancing jesters and a masked man on stilts dancing in our midst. What struck me was the pure, unadulterated joy on their faces. The girls laughed and danced, and they never stopped smiling. All of the YWOV (Young Women of Vision) members excitedly searched out our new friends and held hands with them while we danced together in celebration. Though we were blessed with three hours of dining, dancing, and celebrating, the time flew by all too quickly and suddenly it was time to bid farewell. As each girl exited the venue, we formed lines on each side of the hotel lobby and handed each girl a “Hope Kit” filled with toiletries, cosmetics, and a journal with a personal note inside. And, even better, we gave big hugs to each girl and sent her off with a heartfelt “Dios the bendiga!”