“A New Friend for Wellington,” Friend, April 2021
Wellington held a box in his lap as his dad drove through Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. They passed bright blue, green, and yellow houses. Dad parked the car outside of a big brown building. Wellington got out and grabbed some more boxes. They were full of soap, tissues, and other supplies.
He and his dad were visiting a care home to give supplies to the elderly people who lived there. At first, Wellington had been excited. But now he felt a little nervous. What would the people there be like? Would they be grouchy? What would he say to them?
Wellington walked into the building behind his dad. There were lots of people in the rest home. Some were moving around with walkers. Some sat in wheelchairs, playing chess. Others just sat alone.
Wellington tugged on Dad’s arm. “Dad, I don’t know what to do,” he whispered. “Everyone here is so much older than I am! How do I talk to them?”
Dad smiled and knelt down next to Wellington. “I know the people here are older, and they might look a little different. But everyone here is a child of God, just like you! They probably have some interesting stories to tell.”
Wellington thought about that. He liked making new friends with other kids at school and at Primary. Maybe he could make friends here too!
While Dad handed out boxes, Wellington went around and talked to the people sitting in the room. He sang some of his favorite Primary songs to them. Soon lots of people were laughing and singing together. This was so much fun!
Wellington looked around. He noticed a lady sitting alone on a couch. She had gray hair and lots of wrinkles.
He walked over to her and sat down on the couch. “Hi!” he said. “My name’s Wellington. What’s yours?”
She looked at him and smiled. “I’m Mariana,” she said.
Wellington was nervous, so he asked the first question he could think of. “What’s your favorite food?”
She thought for a second. “I’ve always loved pão de queijo,” she said.
“That’s my favorite too!” said Wellington. He loved the small cheesy rolls.
They started to talk about their favorite songs, sports, and memories. Mariana told him about the fun things she used to do when she was a kid.
“Thank you for coming here today,” she said. “I don’t have any family who can come and visit me, and it can be hard to make new friends.” Mariana’s eyes got sad. “Sometimes I feel all alone.”
Wellington wasn’t sure what to say. He thought about how sad he would be if he didn’t have friends or family to talk to. Then he thought about what his dad said about everyone here being a child of God.
He smiled and looked at Mariana. “When I’m lonely, I like to pray to Heavenly Father. He helps me feel better. I know that I’m never alone because I can always talk to Him. Maybe you could try praying too.”
Mariana smiled and hugged Wellington. “Thank you. I think that’s a great idea.”
Soon Dad came up to Wellington and tapped him on the arm. “Time to go,” he said.
“Already?” said Wellington.
Dad laughed. “Don’t worry. We can come back next week.”
That made Wellington happy. He hopped off the couch. “See you next time!” he told Mariana.
He smiled as he waved goodbye to his new friend. He couldn’t wait to come back!