ASUNCIÓN, Paraguay -- In the South American country of Paraguay, a single mother watched a report about an abandoned and mistreated baby girl. That heart-tugging story launched Patricia Bozzano on an extraordinary adventure.
Today, she provides love and shelter to 200 needy children in a home where every meal is a miracle.
Silvia Gonzalez arrived at the shelter seven years ago, looking for some way to save her life.
"I was about to die in the hospital. And it was there, for the second time, somebody talked to me about God. But I didn't want to listen because besides being involved in all kinds of drugs, I was also involved in Satanism, in occultism," Silvia said.
But just when everything seemed lost, Silvia met one person who would help change her life forever.
Seventeen years ago, Patricia Bozzano was a single mother of four children, a painter and artist. One night, while watching the evening news, she saw a baby girl that had been terribly mistreated and abandoned by her parents. She felt so moved that she adopted the baby.
That was the beginning of a love story in which Bozzano would go on adopting and bringing abandoned children to her home.
Today, the shelter "United by Christ" in Capiatá, Paraguay, is home to 200 children and teenagers. But how can a single woman raise and support 200 children?
"One day, I told the Lord, 'Let's do this. I'll take care of your children as their mom, and you take care of our provisions.'" Bozzano said.
And the supplies started to arrive, without her looking for them. Members of different churches and ministries began knocking at her door with help, food or clothing.
Over time, they also received four acres of land as a donation, on which they are now building new dormitories, a dining room, and a Christian school, which will also serve children of low-income families outside the home.
But what may be the most impressive fact about the United by Christ shelter is that they receive children and teenagers who are drug-addicts, physically ill, that have been abused and abandoned, or who have a criminal history. But in this place, they all recover.
The doors are never closed for any abandoned child. Therefore they have plenty of needs. Besides material things, the home always welcomes missionaries from different parts of the world, who can help with the children's Christian education.
*Original Broadcast Date: November 6, 2009.