An Awkward Conversation Can Change Everything  

Who would have known that an awkward conversation would turn into an opportunity to help a dream come true? But God knew. He opened a door for me to listen and for Atulado to support a vision that will touch the lives of others.

Many women in Cuba don’t have the feminine products they need. The cost and even access to feminine products make them a wish list item. So, women will cut up what precious clothing they own to manage their monthly cycle. We’ve started taking reusable sanitary pads on our mission trips to ease this burden.

On a recent trip, I gave Vilmaris a package of pads. Vilmaris is the wife of a Cuban pastor. In Cuba, this role serves alongside her husband as a church leader. She helps with the children’s ministry, has biblical training, and helps care for the congregation’s spiritual needs.

An instant smile shone on her face, and her eyes sparkled as she took the package. I know Vilmaris well, so I asked if the pads were useful or if she was just being polite with her gigantic smile. She said her cycle would begin soon, and she didn’t know what clothes to sacrifice next week. That situation is very stressful, but this gift is not only a beautiful bag but solves her problem.

After what most would consider an uncomfortable conversation, I asked about her needs. Vilmaris’ humble spirit struggled to reply, but she shared that her dream was to hold a women’s conference. She knew it would be expensive but felt God was calling her on this path. Touched by what she said, I asked about her plans and learned that she needed a small investment of $500 to get started.

Vilmaris’ dream entails bringing women and leaders in the church together for biblical teaching related to women, sharing their struggles, encouragement lessons, prayer, and developing deeper relationships. The women that attend will be more equipped spiritually, mentally rested, and recharged. When they return home, their husbands, children, friends, and family will hear what they learned. The message and good news will spread like wildfire to impact hundreds. So, Atulado came by her side to help launch her plans.

When she discovered that together we’d make her dream come true, Vilmaris touched her upper chest, put her head down, and teared up. With support, she’s empowered to make a difference for the women in her church, which moved her significantly.

The central theme of the first conference is Women of God Shines from Isaiah 60:1. Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. Other topics include:

  • Shine as a friend and servant to the Lord
  • Shine as the mother of faith and faithful daughter
  • Shine as a wife and a leader
  • Shine amid these times

Atulado will provide attendees with resource bags filled with underwear, sanitary pads, washcloths, a touchless thermometer, medicine, toothbrushes, scrunchies, a devotional, a water filter, and other items.

What started as an awkward conversation turned into a dream come true. Helping Vilmaris and the fifty attendees will influence others far and wide, not only in Cuba but also for those who support the event.

– Wayne S.   

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