Freddy is 31 years old and the oldest of 3 children. His father abandoned the family when he was very young, and his mother made her living washing clothes by hand, earning less than a dollar a day. At age 6, Freddy started school and got his first pair of shoes, which his mother obtained in exchange for washing clothes. At age 6, he also learned to cook rice for himself so that he would not go to school hungry. There were days when he and his brothers did not eat at all. Their diet was mainly rice, potatoes, and pasta. When he was 11 years old, he almost died from severe malnutrition and cholera, which was diagnosed by the doctor at his school. He said he looked like the photos of the starving children in Africa. He was just skin and bones. He had to drop out of school, and he was critically ill for about 3 months. Now, as he looks back, he believes God saved him for a purpose.
After he recovered from his illness, he went to work as a mason’s helper, earning about a dollar a day. With the money he earned, he helped to buy food for the family. His grandmother also helped. She sold vegetables in the open market, and she would give them food. Years passed and when Freddy was 17, he decided that he wanted to finish high school. He got a couple of jobs in Sucre, working long hours during the day and taking classes at night. But because he had to work such long hours during the day, he could not stay awake in his classes at night, and he dropped out of school once again.
During the next 12 years, Freddy lived alone and worked at many different jobs. In July of 2012, he got very sick again. He was coughing a lot and losing weight. He went to a doctor and was told he had tuberculosis or cancer in his lungs. He thought he was dying, and he became very depressed. He went to see his family, and they immediately took him to a hospital. He was diagnosed with tuberculosis and began the necessary treatment. During this time, he was unable to work and his mother took care of him. One day, he went to visit his sister who was working at a counseling center in Sucre. There he met one of our Mission of Hope doctors, who encouraged him to come to the Mission of Hope clinic, telling him that it was free. Freddy did not really believe it would be free, but since he had run out of money and options, he decided to check it out.
Freddy was one of our first patients when we opened the Sucre clinic in February of 2013. The love and attention he received from everyone in the clinic greatly impacted him. When he went to the pharmacy to pick up his medicine, he asked the pharmacist how much it cost. She told him it was free. Freddy reached into his pocket and pulled out one of two bills, which he put in the “offering” box at the pharmacy window. A short time later, Freddy returned and told the pharmacist that he had put in the wrong bill. He had put in the larger bill, which he needed to pay his rent. He asked if he could get it back. She told him the box was locked and she did not have the key. She encouraged him to have faith that God would provide for him. Unable to do anything else, he left. A few days later, Freddy returned to tell everyone that the same afternoon that he put his money in the offering box, he found a job that paid him more than $400 a month! He was so thankful to God for that miracle!
Now, a year later, Freddy continues to come to the clinic for check-ups. His health is much improved and he has been healed of tuberculosis. He says he realizes now that true well-being comes from the well-being of his soul. Freddy says that when he first came to the clinic, he was at the point of wanting to end his life. Now that he has experienced spiritual healing through Jesus Christ, he has a new hope. He is telling his family and friends about Jesus. He is making plans to go back to school and go to college. Freddy’s life has been forever changed! Thank you to all of our supporters who have made this possible!