Sunday, July 30, 2006
Mogote is the community where Amber has been working for the past year. Thursday we went there with a group after they finished their VBS. here are some pictures of some of the community kids that are so cute! We love to play with them. That's mostly what the group did, play frisby, blow bubbles, play horseshoes and soccer with the kids. As we were getting ready to leave they decided to pass out candy and little toys. Again...chaotic. You try to tell them to make a line, which they do but they get so excited there's a lot of pushing and cutting in line and it's hard to pass things out evenly and fairly and easily. The lady passing things out kept having to step back, and back, and back, until she eventually ended up on the steps of the bus. Finally candy was thrown from the bus...bad idea. Kids get trampled and go after the candy like a pinata has just been busted open. In the picture there are about half as many people as there had been. We had to leave. I know that the kids had a lot of fun. This is our favorite place to go to do ministry.
For a couple days our groups had a bus driver named Franklin. He had been mostly driving for other church groups in other parts of town. One night after coming back to Baxter from dinner, that other group was there. When they saw Franklin they ran to him, smothering him with hugs. Then next thing we know we hear he's going to get baptized. We all walked to the baptistry and found out that he had made his decision a few days earlier. He had driven a group to a Catholic church that they were touring, but he didn't want to go inside. A group member saw this and started talking to him. He didn't want to go in because he didn't feel right with God. The group member shared the Gospel with him and explained the Bible and how God can make us right with Him. The group didn't see him much after that day because he started driving for us. So that's why the other group was so excited to see him. It was an amazing story. Franklin cried after he was baptized and I couldn't stop smiling. The biggest smile I've had on my face in a long time. It was so neat to be there to witness it and hear his story.
By the way, the baptistry didn't get filled up enough so that's why Franklin's sitting down.
There were two groups that did VBS's in a church where Amber attends. The picture of the kids with BK crowns is from the first group. I got to help a lot with translating. They acted out the story of David and Goliath and had 3 stations afterwards of activities for the kids. They performed the skit twice, each time for a group of about 100 kids. It was crazy. The first time we split the kids into 2 groups, sent half outside and the other half stayed in to do the stations. But after splitting them up into 3 small groups, there were still 40 kids left over without anything to do. So I told the leaders they could go ahead and hand out stuffed animals they'd brought. Baaaaaad idea! Some kids had none, some had 3. And out of nowhere comes a group of about 20 adult women, only some with their babies, wanting toys. Finally we had to shut down that operation and send all of them home.
The other two pictures are of the other group doing their VBS. They had more experience and it went much better. They acted out the story of Jesus sleeping on the boat with his disciples in a storm and then calming the storm. So since there was wind in the story, one of the crafts was to make a windsock. But one girl decided to wear hers as a hat instead. I thought it was pretty creative!
Last Thursday we celebrated Darwin's (Cholo's) 17th birthday at our house. It was really fun and special. From Left to right: Darwin, Josh, Alyssa, and Rachel. Those three have been staying at our house most of the Summer and it has been a ton of fun. Alyssa cooked up some awesome hamburgers on our new grill, and Rachel and I made some delicious "papas fritas", french fries. We also bought a very yummy chocolate cake which was like we're used to in the states. The usual Honduran cakes are frosted with a marshmallow type frosting. Not too appetizing. Darwin said he'd never eaten like that before, and we weren't sure what he meant exactly. That he'd never sat at a table to eat without people getting up and down at their leisure? Or that he'd never eaten that kind of food before? or that he'd never been able to eat that much and serve himself? He said it was the first birthday celebration he'd ever had. His mom called to thank Amber later for all of it since she forgot it was his birthday. Darwin is one of 12 kids. We were honored to be able to celebrate with him. Please pray for Darwin. He is such a special likeable kid that has a special place in my heart.
Sunday, July 23, 2006
These pictures are from two different places. Just trying to be efficient. The first three are from a town on the outskirts of the city called Mateo, only about a 20 minute drive from Baxter. I went with a group there yesterday to translate while they built the house. The house behind the man hammering is the house the family used to live in. While the group was building I found out a lot about the family. There's the grandma, her granddaugter and two grandchildren, a 16 year old and a 3 year old. The old house was built 20 years ago by her son out of mud bricks and needs a new roof. They moved out into a smaller wooden box for safety. They set up a shack as their kitchen. When the new house is done they will repair the old house, make the front room a kitchen and the oldest grandson will live in the back room, and the ladies will live in the new wooden house. The mom is the only working person in the household, works in a furniture factory for about $50 per month. Pretty good comparatively. We encountered cows on the way there. Not something you see everyday, but I do, pretty much!
The picture of the three girls: the one on the right is the 3 year old of the house with her two cousins that came over to visit. I talked to the 75 year old grandma awhile, about her life. She was married once but has been a widow for about 25 years and raised 5 children. I asked her if she could give me any advice for marriage and after thinking a few seconds she just said, "Behave yourself! Be good!" That's it? I thought. I thought she'd get a more serious look on her face and just blow me away with a profound phrase of wisdom. But after thinking about it, I decided that that is simple, yet profound, and if we would just all behave ourselves we could save ourselves a lot of trouble.
The other pictures are another day and another group about 2 hours outside the city in a town called "Izopo", also the word for Q-Tip. It's absolutely beautiful. I helped the group do a VBS with about 70 or so kids. In one picture you see the kids getting to act out the story of David and Goliath. First a group member read it in Spanish, then the group acted it out, then they allowed some kids to act it out. This community is pretty remote, welll, ok, very remote and people were waiting outside when we arrived.Part of the group built a house across the way while the VBS was going on. ON a bus on dirt roads with some muddy spots it takes awhile to get there. it's a beautiful adventure just to arrive.
Lemoncio is the name of atown where a Baxter professor's family lives. He's been going there every weekend for awhile and the church was built about a year ago in a small village in the mountains. I'd never been and last week I got to go with a group to build a "pavilion" for their outside kids classes and a cement sidewalk in front of the building. It was a good time. People here are so humble and kind. I got to talk with an elderly gentleman who wanted to practice his english. It was so beautiful out there! It was worth the drive just for the scenery! In one picture you can see the luxurious bathrooms that were available. In another, the path from the "main" road to the church. The church was purposely built to look like a Catholic church with bell towers to attract people who could see it from their homes. Mixing cement "volcano-style". And the group playing with the kids and the kids climbing the mango tree and eating it. They are soo tasty!
It is incredibly exciting to go to different villages one-two hours outside the city with different groups and see how God is working in different ways! Thanks to Him and to so many of you who allow me to be here to be a part of His work here in Honduras!
Saturday, July 22, 2006
Here I am, Master and commander of the cement mixer. my first time! i am so proud! this is a group i worked with the other day. my camera´s not working so hot these days so ignore the dates. Anyone who´s been to mexico may have mixed feelings about seeing these pictures. memories! it was a great day weather wise, not too hot or sunny. and the group worked really well pouring cement for a parking lot at the boys´home. oh, and a view out the bus on the way home. it´s so beautiful away from teh city!
yea! my first Gringo Friends to visit were the Cron´s, David and Linda (R to L). Here they are in a quaint little town outside Teguc. called Valle de Angeles, or Valley of the Angels.
We had a great time sightseeing and eating out. Sorry, but all I had was college people food at home.
On Sunday David preached, in spanish!, and it went really well.
We had a lot of fun and their visit was way too short, but hopefully there will be more visits in the future! Thanks for coming! Bendiciones!