A few months a go, Colleen Mitchell and I begin a friendship via Facebook messages and e-mails. God brought us together as we led an (in)courage community Facebook group together. Colleen is a Catholic, and I am a Baptist/Methodist. Colleen is a mom, and I am a few weeks shy of my first marriage anniversary. Colleen’s family currently lives in Costa Rica, and Adam and I are still stateside paying off our student debt before we go on the mission field. Despite our many differences, we have become great friends, and she is a great mentor to me. She has walked many season of life ahead of me, and I am grateful for how she shares her wisdom with me via technology.
Today is a tough day for Colleen’s family. I can only imagine the grief and pain that they are experiencing today. Five years a go today, Bryce, their 6th son, went to sleep, and then he woke up in the presence of God. At thirteen weeks old, he passed away, and his family remained behind.
Out of their deep grief, the Mitchell’s felt God’s call to reach out to others so they founded St. Bryce Missions. The Mitchell family now lives in Costa Rica, and they lead the St. Francis Emmaus Center where mothers and infants are tended to during their time leading up to delivery and afterwards. Colleen’s Facebook feed is continuously full of updates of these mothers and their little ones. If I close my eyes, I think I can imagine myself there via the pictures she posts and her descriptions.
Unfortunately, several friends close to me have lost their precious children. My heart aches for them, and I pray that they know they are close to my heart and often in my prayers.
If you would like to honor the life of Bryce or another child in your life, the Connell’s would love to have you pray or even donate to their ministry. The family suggests that individuals donate in increments of five ($5, $15, etc.) to remember that five years a go was Bryce’s glory day.