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Peru missionaries beautify homeless shelter

LIMA, Peru

Missionaries and staff from the Peru Missionary Training Center recently gave service in the community when they cleaned and painted a homeless shelter in downtown Lima.

Sister Jeanne Groberg, wife of MTC president Joseph H. Groberg, hands out paper towels to help missionaries clean up after they finished the dirty task of cleaning the outside windows.
Sister Jeanne Groberg, wife of MTC president Joseph H. Groberg, hands out paper towels to help missionaries clean up after they finished the dirty task of cleaning the outside windows.

Teachers and auxiliary staff from the center as well as MTC President Joseph H. Groberg and his wife, Jeanne, accompanied approximately 80 missionaries on the service project. The contingent beautified both the inside and outside of a facility called Hogar de Christo ("Home of Christ") during five hours on the afternoon of Dec. 24.

"We went downtown to Lima right after lunch," President Groberg said. "We cleaned and painted a huge building that had been used as a shelter for [homeless] adults. The missionaries painted all of the living quarters, moved the beds, painted the hallways and windows, and just basically brightened up the entire facility."

Missionaries hard at work cleaning and painting the inside of a homeless shelter.
Missionaries hard at work cleaning and painting the inside of a homeless shelter.
Elder James Stephens paints an interior wall.
Elder James Stephens paints an interior wall.

The project marked the first time that the training center's missionaries have gone into the community to give service since the Grobergs began their service on Jan. 1, 2008. President Groberg said that part of the reason he wanted to plan a significant service project was so that missionaries wouldn't feel homesick during the holiday season, as well as to be of service to people in need.

"I really viewed it as a way for them to feel the Spirit of Heavenly Father's love by serving their fellowmen," he said. "That was really what was on my mind, and why we organized it. And the missionaries loved it, and were very grateful for it. They felt it. I didn't hear a single missionary that felt homesick."

Four elders team up to clean the shelter's front windows.
Four elders team up to clean the shelter's front windows.
Two sister missionaries mix some paint that will be used on the interior living quarters of the shelter.
Two sister missionaries mix some paint that will be used on the interior living quarters of the shelter.

According to President Groberg, the service rendered was received with heartfelt thanks.

President Groberg said: "(The residents) thought, 'what a marvelous thing that these missionaries would even go so far as clean the dust off of our windows and let the light come in.' At the end, they were so happy and thrilled, wanting all of us to stay . . . it was a beautiful experience."

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