Living Hope for Honduras has the good fortune of a devoted family of staff largely located in Honduras. The real work of Living Hope is performed by these dedicated men and women, who are qualified, capable, and oversee day-to-day operations.
Elvin & Maribel Espinal Cruz
Dir., Children’s Homes & Farm Operations
As Director of Honduran Operations, Elvin's duties include supervising the Children’s Homes and Farm Management.
Elvin studied Medicine in Tegucigalpa for four years and then entered the Baxter Institute where he graduated with a degree in Theology. After their marriage, he and Maribel directed day care centers for Mission Lazarus, where he also preached. The couple then served as house parents at Jovenes en Camino Children’s Home.
Elvin and Maribel joined Living Hope in 2016 and used their experience to help shape policies and procedures serving as House Parents for the Nanny’s Casa, where 12 wonderful girls who were abused and/or abandoned now live as a family. Elvin and Maribel bring expertise and passion to their role as Directors of the girl’s home(s). They interact almost daily with the girls, encouraging, teaching, and modeling a Christian marriage. They supervise house parents of Nanny’s Casa and will expand duties to include Lynn’s House when it is completed and staffed. They exhibit total integrity and leadership in answering to a remote Board of Directors.
Maribel has a bachelor’s degree in secondary education and has worked with children and adolescents all her life. Elvin and Maribel were the first house-parents in Nanny’s Casa along with their own children Shelly and Raymond. They set the tone of love and acceptance, providing spiritual training and education. In addition to her duties as co-director of the homes, she is the leader of the Youth Group at the Gualaco church, conducting workshops on Saturdays for many young people in the area, of all faiths.
Maribel’s main interest and talent is working with girls and young women, teaching them to value themselves as women, improve self-esteem and personal security; she helps them see the importance of seizing opportunities that can improve their futures. Maribel’s instruction and her example is invaluable for girls who have come from horrific abuses and poverty. They now face a future of hope!
Elvin oversees farming and dairy operations near the home. The farm provides income for Living Hope and jobs for the community, as well as milk, eggs, and produce for the girls’ home.
“Esperanza Viva,” translated, is Living Hope. The logo including “EV” is a replica of the brand designed by benefactor Paul Majors to mark cattle on Living Hope’s farm Gualaco, Honduras. In Honduras, the brand is widely recognized as the symbol of Living Hope. The farm is one of the ministries’ most promising investments, potentially expanding production to further serve the community and provide more employment opportunities.
Pablo & Nancy Padilla
Dir., Spiritual Development, Education & Construction
Pablo Padilla was hired in May 1996 as a contractor to build the church in Gualaco. He met Bob and Wade Walters and Keith Pinson. As a result of their relationship, he began attending the church and committed his life to Christ.
In 1998 he entered the Bible School of Honduras and graduated as an instructor of the Gospel. He was called to work as director of a children’s home in Capiro. He returned to Gualaco to preach in Jicalapa, work on construction of the church in Pacura and served as a Bible teacher. In September 2008, he joined Living Hope as Director of Church Missions. He counsels preachers and oversees benevolence in the 14 churches financially supported by Living Hope. He also oversees the work of the preachers, compiles timely reports and handles all emergencies, special needs, and construction projects.
Because of Covid-19, there are major food shortages among the communities we serve. Supporters answered the appeal for help and as a result, over 600 families received relief. The food delivery program was organized by Pablo and assisted by ministers of Living Hope and local youth groups.
Pablo’s wife, Nancy, works with vulnerable youth in the church. Nancy is an important part of Living Hope, working with Pablo to face new challenges every day. She serves as the Head of the Kitchen at the compound adjacent to the church, providing all meals for every volunteer group that comes to work for Living Hope. Needless to say, visitors love it when Nancy rings the bell for breakfast, lunch and dinner!
Naaman Ariel Izaguirre & Olga Eunice Martinez
House Parents for Nanny’s Casa
Naaman Ariel Izaguirre and his wife, Olga Eunice Martinez (pictured with their 5-year-old son, Jonael) serve as House Parents for Nanny’s Casa.
Naaman studied theology at Baxter Institute in Tegucigalpa, graduating with a degree in Theology in 2017. He expected to become a preacher, but his passion and work history has been to work in children’s homes, which he believes God has called him to do. He worked mainly with boys before and now girls, which he says “is different and has many challenges. I believe that providing love to all these girls, working together with them and guiding them in everything they undertake is a source of pride and a blessing for us.”
Olga wanted to study Microbiology at the university, but when her parents separated, her mother was left alone with 6 children. Olga gave up her dream of college and went to work. She soon enrolled in a nursing program where she graduated and began working at a Surgical Medical Center. Her medical training has been very useful in her role as house parent. Both Naaman and Olga truly parent the girls, helping with their education, spiritual development, teaching them interpersonal skills and developing their individual talents. The girls have shown interest in baking, reading, sewing, and sports, all with the potential for a career path.
Rogelio Alberto Espinal Cruz
Manager of Maintenance
Rogelio Alberto Espinal Cruz currently serves as Manager of Maintenance for Living Hope properties. He is originally from Choluteca in southern Honduras and is a graduate of the University of Jose Cecilio del Valle (UJCV). He is a skilled electrician, learning this and other construction skills from his father. He is married to Damaris Gabriela Izaguire Exquivel, also a graduate of UJCV.
Rogelio and Damaris have been married 10 years and have a 9-year-old daughter, Rut Alejandra.
Before coming to Living Hope Damaris sold clothes in her own store and Rogelio was a taxi driver. Both Rogelio and Damaris worked with the Church of Christ in Choluteca as instructors of the youth. Damaris became the director of the church's Sunday school program and served as church administrator. She has also served as a substitute instructor for Jovenes en Camino. Life has taught them to work hard and trust God! They are highly motivated to serve with Living Hope. They are impressed with how many families are blessed by the work, especially girls who need love, care, and protection. They say that “working with Living Hope is a dream for us which God is fulfilling today.” Damaris and Rogelio are in training to become house parents in Lynn’s Casa when it opens.
Administrative Assistant to the Board Chair
Danielle Gravly serves as Administrative Assistant to the Chair of the Board of Directors. In this role, she creates financial reports, data for fundraising, and keeps records for the Student Scholarship Program. Danielle has a degree in Mathematics from the University of West Georgia and has taught at the high school level. She and her husband lived in Honduras for three years shortly after their marriage, where they “fell in love” with the people and the country. They worked for the International School of Tegucigalpa; her husband also served as a pastoral intern for the church they attended. Danielle brings both her skills and her passion to the ministry.
Victor A. Sanchez
Honduran Financial Director
Victor A. Sanchez is Honduran Financial Director for Living Hope. He interfaces with the Executive Committee and the Finance Committee of the Board of Directors to disperse and account for funds locally as needed. Victor graduated from the university in Tegucigalpa in Public Accounting and Finance because of a Living Hope scholarship. After graduating, he worked for a logistics company and then the Honduran government Servicio de Income Administration.
Victor also teaches Mathematics at Nanny’s Casa, as many of the girls are home schooled. Most arrive at the home below grade level or have never attended school. Victor is testament to the Living Hope philosophy of educating people who will stay and improve their country.