After my parents had been in the United States for thirteen years, my mother decided to return to her native country, Ecuador. She went back for her daughters (including me) who at the time were already teenagers. All of us traveled leaving everything we had known until then; our people, family, home, and friends.
It was a whole new challenge to arrive at a country where you do not know anyone; you do not understand the language; a different culture. I began to experience high emotional impacts due to the readjustments that my whole life was taking. I dedicated myself for an entire year to study English because I knew I needed it to communicate with people. I started attending a church in Pittsfield, MA,where my parents attended.
Irma braving the cold during NEBC’s Resurrection Road 2015
At first, I did not want to go back to church, even though I knew I needed God. One day I could no longer endure all the burdens of my heart, and I surrendered to him; I felt that I had no way out, and it was time to get right with God. Within me raised a desire to serve God with my whole life. My pastor told me about NEBC; I realized that this was an excellent opportunity to fulfill that desire.
I met President Mark Ballard, a person of extraordinary faith that also inspired me to start attending NEBC. The first year of college life was difficult because I did not understand more than 30% which frustrated me. The love of the people of NEBC and the teachers’ support played a great role for me to keep moving on. Now, I help in the youth of my church; we have many plans that we hope to achieve only with God’s help.
Irma (in Pink) at NEBC’s Christmas Party.
NEBC has helped me to grow in my faith, and besides that I am getting education and learning more about My God. It is very inspiring to see how the staff of NEBC encourages students day by day to live what we believe, to acquire a deeper understanding about our doctrine, and to share the gospel boldly.
Sometimes I look back over time and realize that God’s grace was with me all the time, and I understand that He wants to use me in many ways, that is why He gave me the opportunity to come here, to attend NEBC. What a great pleasure it is to be God’s child.