Finding hope when cancer strikes children
One family in Nicaragua received vital support during an intense time of need
Born healthy, Sharon enjoyed her childhood in Nicaragua. Last year, Sharon Téllez was studying in fourth grade when she began showing symptoms of sickness. After medical examinations, doctors informed her parents she had leukemia. Since then, cancer has changed every aspect of her life. She has changed her trip to school with going to the hospital, where she stayed for more than one year for treatment.
During this intense time, Bible Society of Nicaragua met Sharon and her family. Practical and spiritual needs of Sharon’s family were provided by the Bible Society. Through its “Hope and Smile for Children with Cancer” programme, financial aid was given to Sharon’s mother Mayerin, to alleviate stress and allow her to provide better care for her daughter. Staff from the Bible Society also read the Bible with Sharon and her family, sharing devotionals and prayers.
“She fell so ill, she was admitted to the intensive care unit.” – Mayerin Téllez
“When the doctors told me about my daughter’s diagnosis, I felt as if I lost her,” Mayerin shared.
“She felt weak during the initial treatment cycle, she lost her hair, eyebrows, and body’s defence system. She fell so ill, she was admitted to the intensive care unit.
“Staying in the hospital felt as an ongoing training where I learned to depend more on God and about the ministry of the Bible Society.”
Mayerin is extremely grateful for the “important support” provided through the “Hope and Smile” programme during Sharon’s treatment. As explained by Bible Society of Nicaragua project manager Rebeca Alfaro, “Hope and Smile for Children with Cancer” aims to do more than hand out Bibles. “Far beyond that, our goal is not only to give them the Bible but to also read the Bible so that they understand the Bible.”
“I begged him to heal my child…” – Mayerin Téllez
The impact upon Sharon’s family has extended to their reliance upon God, during challenging circumstances. “God prepares and strengthens us every day to move forward alongside with my daughter,” continued Mayerin.
“I look back and remember the difficult moments – at one point, when Sharon almost completed her treatment, the cancer suddenly attacked her body’s defence system and we almost lost her. Her doctors told us that she would not be able to survive this time, because she acquired a virus that prevented her from standing up.
“It was at that moment I didn’t have words left for my daughter. However, I decided to make a covenant of faith and service to God; I begged him to heal my child and asked the volunteers to pray for her, and after several days, God healed her.
“I feel grateful to God! It was through the biblical stories and prayers that motivated me to look for and believe in him.”
A year has passed since Sharon was first admitted and doctors have confirmed she is in remission. “I give glory to God and want to thank the brothers and sisters in Christ who work in the Bible Society, the donors, my family, and friends. Now that God healed my daughter from cancer, I am ready to fulfill my covenant and to serve God,” Mayerin said.
Nicargua’s “Hope and Smile for Children with Cancer” campaign was only half funded this year, which has affected its ability to impact more families like Sharon’s.