Kati O’Neill

Time Spent in Bolivia

This past May, I had the privilege of spending 3 weeks in Bolivia, South America with fourteen students, our campus pastor, and another chaperone all from Bluffton University.  We arrived in La Paz and spent the beginning portion of the trip in their city, which is commonly known as where the altitude is very high. For the next part of the journey, we traveled southeast to a rural part of Bolivia staying in the city of Santa Cruz.  This was a very life-changing experience in that we spent time worshipping with the Bolivians and just embracing ourselves into their culture.

My attitude toward service was that we should do it not only to satisfy ourselves, but also to satisfy God.  We were created for more than making money in which to pay the bills; we were made for a bigger purpose in life.  Each and every one of us has different abilities because that is how God made us. We need to serve in order to make a difference in our world.  I believe we should serve because he notices and cares deeply for all who serve him and we can do nothing to commend ourselves to God.  Helping to clean and paint the church and also to help build a Sunday school classroom especially in another country definitely hit home for me.  That really meant a great deal to me.  Separation from other people helps us to gain a better understanding of who we are and what we are here for.  We need to remain hopeful to everyone around us and this helps us grow as a person and also helps other people.  The people in Bolivia are very caring and friendly.  I really believe that God wants to challenge us and he wants to go outside our comfort zone.

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Kati with Maily and her family that the O’Neill’s sponsor through Compassion

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Maily showing Kati her school work.

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Kati’s Bluffton University group that visited Bolivia.

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Photo taken during a hike in Bolivia.