ACN Success Story – Bolivia

A car for a parish in the Andes

Our benefactors have donated $38,820 towards the purchase of an all-terrain vehicle intended for the immense parish of Peñas in the Bolivian Andes, ministered to by Father Antonio Zavatarelli. The priest also runs a school in La Paz, the administrative capital of Bolivia (and highest in the world), which stands at an altitude of over 3,500 m.

The 27 villages of his parish are high up in the mountains, up to 5,200 m. The rough, unmetalled roads and tracks are littered with deep potholes, stones, and muddy stretches that are a challenge to any vehicle, and frequent snowfall is a further risk.

There are also other significant challenges. The people here live in great poverty, while the hostile climate, combined with environmental pollution and soil erosion, renders life even more difficult. Many of the young people drop out of school early and seek their fortune in the big city, where instead of the better life they had hoped for, they often find themselves rootless and without prospects in suburban slums, without work and surrounded by a world of alcohol, drugs, and crime. Hence there is a great need for intensive pastoral care both in the rural areas and in the cities.

Thanks to your generous help, Father Antonio, who is originally from Italy, can now more easily reach the people who truly need him.

He writes: “In this time of great crisis of humanity, we remain united in prayer and working for a world of peace, in the footsteps of Our Lord Jesus Christ. Thank you!”

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