A crewmember on board Logos Hope trembled with emotion minutes before going on stage in the ship’s theatre, to speak to young men who had gathered for the Ready, Set, Go event. “I hope my message sows a seed in their hearts,” he prayed.
The 120 youths from Puerto Barrios, Guatemala City and Santo Tomás de Castilla listened in complete silence to the remarkable story of another of the ship’s volunteers, Joan Magreault (France).
“I want to serve Him, who called me to His side, no matter how low I had fallen in my life,” said Joan; recalling his past on the streets of France. “The members of the gang told me: ‘You must go to the house of those who bought drugs from us and take the money they owe us.’ I went and there was nobody there. I burned some things and returned to my gang and then we went with firearms to different places to look for the people who owed money,” Joan said.
“The next day, a policeman arrested me and threatened me; saying that if I did not confess my crimes I would be imprisoned for five years,” Joan continued. “Desperate, I knelt in my cell and begged God: ‘If you open these doors today, I will take your Word to the whole world.’ Two minutes later, the same policeman arrived and told me I was free.”
The boys in the theatre were gripped. “Do not think you're not enough for God,” Joan told them. “Look at my life. I was involved in drugs, alcohol and gangs. I am living proof that God can use you.”
“All of us must have a purpose in life,” Heber Da Rocha (Brazil) told the audience. “We must love one another.” Heber modelled Jesus by washing the feet of someone from the crowd, Oscar Savala. “I've been shocked,” the 25-year-old accounting student reflected later. “Tonight I feel Jesus more closely; calling me.”
The event closed with a message from Edilson Grijalva, who serves as part of OM Guatemala. “We want to awaken in young people the passion for missions,” said 20 year-old Edilson. “I hope that this activity will bring discomfort to young people so that they want to get out of their apathy. I know that Jesus Christ can transform their lives!” he declared.