12/30/11

Family Time!

Hope you are all having a joyful holiday season! 


We have been blessed with the opportunity to come back and spend a week with Stacey’s family (York, PA)  and then a week with Kaleb’s family (Gallipolis, OH).  We’ll be at our state side Heart to Honduras office and visiting our friends in the Dayton, OH area Jan. 4th and  5th before we fly back to Honduras January 6th.  We do not have plans to return to the States before Sept. 2012 at the earliest. 
We love our families dearly and thought we’d share a few pictures of them!  You can find the slide show under the tab above "Pictures."  If you do not know who they are expand the slide show to full screen in the bottom right hand corner and click on "Show Info" at the top right.  We didn’t get pictures of them all, but here’s a few we have.  Please pray for them as it’s even harder for them than us while we’re gone. 
Also be in prayer for God to provide property for us to move to Las Lomitas upon our return to Honduras.  There are only 2 options and we need for the owners to be willing to sell.

12/24/11

Merry Christmas!

The Reeder Family Tree, she's a beaut.
Merry Christmas... Feliz Navidad. For those of you that didn't know, we're back in the States for a couple of weeks to be with family this holiday season and are headed back to Honduras on January 6. We feel so blessed to get this opportunity to be here; after this we don't plan to be back in the States until at least next September.

Christmas is special to us this year as we think of Christ starting His own development project. He too left a nice, comfortable place to be in an unsafe, dirty, confusing situation. We recognize that He set the precedent of giving up comfort in order to be close to those in need. Leaving heaven to sleep on the floor of a barn is pretty difficult to imagine. Our (substantially easier) process of giving things up in order to serve others is an amazingly humbling experience. It's hard to explain how beautiful it is to be a part of that.

Anyone with access to this blog is in an amazingly blessed position, please don't take advantage of your blessings. We have been given so much, and we have a responsibility to love and serve those around us. This Christmas, take a moment to think of those that truly have nothing; don't think of us, Stacey and Kaleb don't count, we have too much as it is. Think of the little naked kid, the elderly woman living in a mud hut, the African man that lost his wife to AIDS, the forgotten young women in Thailand, the family in Port-au-Prince. Those lives are just as important as ours. We're all in need; we all need love. Don't hold back this coming year. Christ didn't leave us the option of not loving them.

12/19/11

Comida Tipica

Comida Tipica = Typical Food
One of our main goals of our first 3 months down here has been to learn the culture.  Well, part of culture is food!  We have enjoyed learning from the locals to eat and cook new things!  Great quality time and conversations with people in the kitchen is one of Stacey's favorite things to do.  Great ministry opportunity.

If you're interested in what we eat here hope this post helps!

Rice, Beans, and Corn Tortillas
If you'd like to know the most common food these are the three staples: Rice, Beans, and Corn Tortillas.  We see A LOT of this.  If you visit someone, this is most likely what they will give you to eat.


Tamales
Tamales are a more "special occasion" food here in Honduras.  It is the food that everyone eats for Christmas, a celebration, or birthday.  It is made out of cornmeal dough that is flavored with spices (not spicy!).  In the center you will find a mixture of rice/beans and meat (usually chicken or pork).  It is wrapped in and cooked in banana leaf.

There's another version of these called Mantucas, and my my are they tasty. The dough is different, a little sweeter, with just grilled pork inside. They're heavenly.


Baleadas
Everyone down hear makes and eats baleadas.  We'd say it is by far the most common food (other than rice and beans) we have seen so far.  They are a very common food that the poor are able to make.  They are made with a homemade flour tortilla.    The most extravagant baleada you can find will include: re-fried beans, egg, chorizo or chicken, cream, cheese, and avocado.  The most common baleada you will find includes: re-fried beans, cream or cheese, and egg.

Stacey's started as triangles and are getting better.  The challenge is making them round and big enough.
 As you can see this one we made included: refried beans, egg, cheese, and cream.

 We love these!  Hope to make you some when you visit!

Pescado y Tajadas  

These pictures were taken at our favorite place on the Lago Yajoa (near by lake).

View from our table at this restaurant.

This fish certainly did not die in vain. Que rico.

Pescado = fish
Tajadas = slices of fried green bananas
In the case of this lake, the most common fresh fish is Tilapia, but if you want to shell out big money, you can eat bass here too. 

Tortilla con Quesillo
This is another very simple and cheap thing that anyone can make.  It is a corn tortilla filled with a cheese called Quesillo.  I like to say it's the "Honduran grilled cheese."

 Yep, Kaleb is as always a big help in the kitchen!



Anafre
If you go out to a restaurante and would like an appetizer this is one of the most common things to order.  Inside the pottery are hot coals that melt re-fried beans and white cheese in the top bowl.  You then use tortilla chips or fried tortilla triangles to scoop and enjoy!


El Tipico
This is a plate that each restaurant/family makes a little differently.  Possible elements include: rice, beans (whole black or refried), corn tortialla, egg (scrambled or sunny side up), square block of dry cheese, avacado, chicken or beef, and chismol (finely chopped onion, peppers, and tomato). But if you're out running around in Honduras and just need something filling and cheap. This is your best bet.



 Hope that helps you catch a glimpse of our diet down here.


12/15/11

Education

18 yr. olds, caps, gowns, 12th grade, traditional music...all reminds those of us from the US of "graduation".  For those of us blessed enough to attend college or even get a masters/doctorate degree we might even think of those graduation ceremonies when we were a little older.

For Hondurans graduation happens at the end of 6th grade.  Honduras only offers free education through 6th grade.  Most Hondurans are luck to have their 6th grade diploma, it is not uncommon to find someone who never finished.  If you would like to continue your education you must begin paying.  They have 7-9th grade which they call the "Basico" and then 10-12th grades are called "Carrera" which is when they specialize in a specific career.  There are also some colleges/universities but very few Honduras make it that far.  So few that we haven't met one yet.


We just attended what they call "Clausura" = 6th grade graduation. Ada asked us to go as her "Padrinos" = Godparents.  Each graduating student selects a godmother/father or both to walk with them.  Culturally the Padrinos are also expected to give a gift to the graduating student after receiving their diploma (so that is why Stacey is walking around with a gift bag in the pictures).  Since both of Ada's parents have passed, we felt blessed to be able to step into this role and try to make her day a pleasant one.  As all of us who have lost a parent we know how hard "special/significant" days can be.  Bexy, Ada's older sister attended with us and she took the pictures.


About to walk her down the middle aisle
Receiving her diploma!

Taking a picture with her teacher - Sofia


After the Clausura we went back to their house to celebrate with cake and a meal.  Ada got a job for 4 weeks and one of her goals was to be able to provide a meal to everyone after her Clausura.  She did it!  We enjoyed Chicken, Rice, Bread, and potato salad made by her grandma.

Celebrating with a meal and cake!

Bexy and Ada (sisters)

Opening her graduation gift.

From left to right: Local Pastor (Juan), grandma from Canchias, Aunt from Potrerillos, all the little ones are cousins, Eduardo is holding his nephew Darian in the back, Bexy, Ada, and Kaleb


12/14/11

Ready or not...

Here we come. After several months of running all over Honduras, we're finally settling down. At the beginning of the coming year, we'll be moving into Las Lomitas. This town is fairly accessible, only about 15 minutes off the pavement and within 30 minutes of Santa Cruz de Yojoa, a decent sized town. They do not have running water or electricity and focus on agriculture, primarily coffee and plantains. We're going with this community due to its level of need, their level of desire to improve, and its proximity to the office, where we can support the growth of the community development aspect of Heart to Honduras. The pastor there, Erick, is young, very active and has a lot of desire for his church to start improving his community. We feel like there is the beginning of a strong partnership in Las Lomitas, and we are very excited to start sharing life with them.

This process brought us down to the wire with one other community, Caliche. As mentioned previously, Caliche's level of need is extreme, but so is the accessibility. In order to fulfill our obligations here in the office and help forge connections with other development organizations here in Honduras, we needed some place more accessible. But, we are planning to spend one day a week in a Caliche, bringing in various experts and helping them start down the road to sustainable development. We have been working with them now for 3 months to bring clean water in, and the week of January 14, construction should start up in the mountains to bring water from a spring. We've also met with a road commission that has the potential to improve their access. Please be praying for the people there.



These houses are in Caliche. The photos were taken discretely, so they're a little rough.

Both of these communities have huge needs, and we know that we are not sufficient to meet or solve them, let alone without creating dependency. But, we know that this is what we must do. We feel that it's our responsibility to be an advocate for these people. Christ left a perfect life, layed down his power, to be a broken human in a dirty, fallen world. We know that we must follow his example in order make any lasting difference. We want to share life in the way Christ did. To cry, bleed, sweat, and live with the marginalized of the world. We have an obligation to stand up for the forgotten, oppressed, and suffering. How can we know their need if we don't truly know them. These people deserve to know that there is hope in this life and the next just as much as we do. One of our favorite passages is in Isaiah 58 because it shows the God we love so well. The God who is frustrated with hypocrisy and inaction, and yearns for us to show love in this world. The Israelites begin by complaining, and God answers them. Even if you're not the Bible-reading type, please just give this a read.

3 ‘Why have we fasted,’ they say,
   ‘and you have not seen it?
Why have we humbled ourselves,
   and you have not noticed?’
   “Yet on the day of your fasting, you do as you please
   and exploit all your workers.
4 Your fasting ends in quarreling and strife,
   and in striking each other with wicked fists.
You cannot fast as you do today
   and expect your voice to be heard on high.
5 Is this the kind of fast I have chosen,
   only a day for people to humble themselves?
Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed
   and for lying in sackcloth and ashes?
Is that what you call a fast,
   a day acceptable to the LORD?
 6 “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
   and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
   and break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
   and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe them,
   and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
   and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness[a] will go before you,
   and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.
9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer;
   you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
   “If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
   with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
   and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,

then your light will rise in the darkness,
   and your night will become like the noonday.

We know that throughout history and up to this day, Christians have often maligned the name Christ, but we also know that He is a good God, despite the atrocities that fallen people have committed "for His sake." We are committed to making sure our lives reflect the kind of grace and kindness we have been shown by this God that loves without expectation. We recognize that it does not appear to make a lot of sense to leave good jobs, great families, and a content future. But, this apathy is our enemy and if we do not respond now, days will continue to pass with people living without hope.

This coming year, we hope to slowly walk this road with Las Lomitas and Caliche. Please pray for us to be patient, loving, and self-sacrificing; living in the example of our good God.

12/13/11

Digging In

We believe that if we’re truly practicing ABCD (Asset-based Community Development), we need to do it with everyone. As a result, we’ve been able to help Ada and Eduardo start to improve their situation as well with the help of a good friend here in Santa Cruz. Bryan is here working with Canadian Peacemakers International to improve the access of 7-9 grade education, and the program has been very successful. In addition, he has extensive experience in small-scale sustainable agriculture in developing African nations. So, together we started working with Ada in one of her passions – to have her very own vegetables and fruits right there at the house.

ABCD hinges on using a person’s talents, resources, and passions to go the farthest with the development process. Ada has a huge desire to grow things, a little land, and has been trying to start some plants for a while now.  So, everything lined up well to start helping her move towards her dream of eating better and growing her own food. However, Ada’s yard has next to no plant cover and the erosion has been severe. So, our first step was to slow down the damage that the tropical rains were doing to the property.




To slow down the runoff, we used a method called contour ditching. This practice uses ditches dug along level contours on a slope to slow down and detain running water so that it has time to seep into the soil instead of picking up speed and soil with it. On the downhill side of these ditches, deep-rooted species are planted to add a backbone deep into the soil. We used a very deep-rooted grass (Valadiana, their roots can grow to 35ft deep in 2 years), and a fast-growing leguminous tree (Leuceana) for this purpose. In addition, we also planted some ornamental peanut (also a legume) as a ground cover to begin improving the rest of the soil, as well as prevent splash erosion.



To find the level contours, we used a (semi-)primitive water level. The basic principal is that water in a tube will always make itself level. So, we tied a 100ft tube to two poles and marked them as level next to each other. We then kept one stationary on the contour and moved the other to other parts of the yard to find the line. To measure it, you just check the water level against the mark on the pole. 


We helped a couple of days for a couple of hours, but Eduardo and Ada did the majority of the work. Not only does the result give some order to the yard some order, it works! Since they were installed, we’ve had 4 straight days of steady rain. Eduardo said that they worked really well. The water ran into the ditches, sat and slowly leached into the soil instead of sweeping more soil off the property. The rooting plants are already showing new growth and will look great in a couple of months. We’ll work with Ada and Eduardo next year to figure out what they want to grow.



12/9/11

Baking on the Stove Top


With the instructions of a Canadian friend living down here in Hondurans, Brian, we have now been able to “bake” on the 2 burner propane stove that we have since we don’t have an oven.  We started with banana bread since it’s our favorite and there are a TON of banana’s down here.  Since then we've made a few more banana breads, sausage balls, and a 2 layer 8" round graduation cake.
  
How's it done?

Place something heat resistant and stable in the bottom to elevate the food above the water.  We used 4 rocks.  Then pour as much water as you can in without it completely covering your new cooking platform.


Place the food in it's pan on top of your heat resistant item to keep it off the water and then cover the pot with it's lid and boil the water for however long your recipe calls for.  My experience is that it actually takes less time that your normal oven.  

 
If your bread raises too close to the lid, you can add a few little aluminum foil balls to keep the bread from baking into the lid.  Keep your lid closed as long as you can and only do this if necessary toward the end, since this will increase baking time.


  Here is the result. Give it a try if you'd like and let us know how it goes for you.


Turtle...it's whats for dinner.

So, we were in the podunk town of Caliche (again) a couple of days ago when a kid walks up with a feedsack over his shoulder. Not terribly concerning.

Pastora Jesus: Marvin, what're you selling?
Kid (slightly offended): I'm not selling them, I'm eating them.
Pastora: Well, what are you eating then.

That's the face of an animal that's happy with its impending fate.

Marvin proceeded to show three turtles that just weren't quite fast enough. He was pretty pumped and assured us that the meat was very sweet. But then again, this is same kid who was convinced that turtles just eat dirt. We goofed around with the turtles a little while before we headed out.


On the way home, we dropped the Mighty Tortuga Hunter off at his house. We popped into the kitchen to say hi to his family. After introductions, Marvin pulled one of the pathetic creatures out once again and set it down. The turtle, determined to cause as much mayhem as one of his species could, sprinted straight for a chicken brooding on 5000 baby chicks. The chicken, getting in on the fun, went straight up into the air squawking and flailing; its terrified chicks were tossed under the walls, chairs, feet, etc. The delighted turtle continued to run amok, reveling in its final victory until Marvin caught him again and tossed him back in the sack.

Well done Mr. Turtle, well done.





Quote for Thought

Fifteen thousand Africans dying each and every day of preventable, treatable diseases - AIDS, malaria, TB - for lack of drugs that we take for granted. This statistic alone makes a fool of the idea many of us hold onto very tightly: the idea of equality. What is happening in Africa mocks our pieties, doubts our concerns, and questions our commitment to that whole cocept. Because if we're honest, there's no way we could conclude that such mass death day after day would ever be allowed to happen anywhere else. Certainly not in North America, or Europe, or Japan. An entire continent bursting into flames? Deep down, if we really accept that their lives - African lives - are equal to ours, we would all be doing more to put the fire out. It's an  uncomfortable truth.

Bono - In the Foreword of The End of Poverty



12/5/11

CPH Staff


CPH is Corazon Para Honduras (Heart to Honduras) 

Just thought we'd give you a glimpse into the faces of the people we work with every day down here. 


Left to right we have: Consuelo (secretary/janitor), German (leads North American teams), Ever (construction), Manolo (accountant), Luis (interpreter, jack of all trades), Jilo (night watchman), Leo (interpreter, jack of all trades), Naldo (construction), Saul (construction, driver), Wendy (secretary, janitor, assistant to the accountant), and sitting down is Sergio (mechanic, driver).

We've become a big family and will miss them when we move to our community in the new year.  They have invited us in their homes for dinners, taught us Honduran culture and sayings, and we've enjoyed many laughs!  We have been teaching them English class on Thursdays and Fridays.  We also help them out around the office, mainly with random translations/communication/emails when needed. We have planned to come back 1 day a week next year to help out in the office and continue the English classes.

We've been to Consuelos's house to eat her baleadas, make Thanksgiving desserts, and teach a bunch of neighborhood kids how to make chocolate chip cookies.  The kids ask Kaleb all the time when he's coming back because he plays freeze tag and hide and seek with them while Consuelo, her mom, and Stacey visit.  They never ask Stacey to play - guess they are happy with just Kaleb.

German is our neighbor, he lives in the other little room here at the office.  We share food with him sometimes since he doesn't cook on his own.  We run into each other and share live while on the internet or watching TV in the office at night.

We've been to Manolo's house numerous times to make them a lasagna/pizza/stromboli, eat their food, make pumpkin rolls, and make a birthday cake.  His wife's name is Roxanna and they have 1 year old daughter - Milka. We enjoy many great conversations.  Hondurans in general are much more open about life, which makes conversations great as far as we're concerned. 

We stop by Luis's house frequently to just sit and chat or share a meal or cold coke.  His wife's name is Estela and 2 yr. old son is Jeff, also living at their house is Estela's nephew Javier and on the weekends her mother.  Great people.  Luis been a great support to us and what our dream is to do down here.

We went to Jilo's village for a visit, to meet his wife, and extended family about 10-15 min. away.  They are doing great things working together as a community and as of last week now have running water.

We've been to Leo's for baleadas as well.  He has a wife named Geda and 4 yr. old daugheter named Dilma.  We teach Dilma English every now and then too.  This day Leo had just given her this gift of an Ariel tiara after being away for a while and she didn't take it off the whole lesson.  We learned the word for prince and princess that day.  In the picture below we had just learned the song "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" and are now drawing pictures of people and pointing to the body parts that are in the song.


Wendy just moved from San Isidro (here) to Santa Cruz (the town about 15 min. away where we go to shop for groceries) so we give her a ride home sometimes.  It always seems to be raining so the 3 of us cram in the 2 seater cab with Stacey sitting up on the center console.  We bounce down the road laughing about whatever is going on.  We appreciate Wendy's joy and laughter.

Hope that helps you catch a glimpse/summary of our life here at the office. 

We ask for your prayers for wisdom and guidance as we plan to make the decision between 2 communities to move into next year later this week.

12/4/11

Calichito

Well, we went back to Caliche. Yes, the one at the end of the trail that would kill a donkey. We went back to check it out as a place to live. The trip there was every bit as eventful as the last one, only this time I was driving. It was more comfortable, but more exhausting. It’s the only place in my life I’ve been required to use 4-wheel low to get there.

 
We went to Caliche with the intention of getting to know it a little better, and get to know it a little better we did. We went to the Pastora’s house (a lady pastor named Jesus, precious) with Pastor Erik who was going to preach that night. They didn’t know we were coming, but they were happy to receive us. Before we went up to the service that night, we took a little walk around the community. Let me paint you a picture, since culturally, we decided it was better not to take any real ones.

As you walk through Caliche, you are a 5 hour walk away from pavement, and at least 1 and ½ hours away by car. Within minutes after you arrive, you learn that the community buried a 6 month old child yesterday, due to complications from asthma, because the father was too poor to get him to a hospital. There are no concrete houses here. There are 4 houses of wood (14’ x 20’), all built for orphans and widows by HtH. The rest of the houses there are traditional adobe (mud) homes, many with dirt floors. These houses are fairly strong, but not exceptionally sanitary. There are parasites that love the dry mud of adobe homes and can cause potentially fatal heart conditions. 

Every path is peppered with manure. Chickens are in every part of every yard and home. Even the nicest homes have a room or two with dirt floors. Only a few homes have running water outside, and none of them have it purified. Most of the community has to walk some distance to gather water. There is no electricity, therefore, nothing cold in the fridge or washing machines. The majority of the people farm corn and beans, which is usually enough to keep them alive, but not much else. Every meal we ate was homemade corn tortillas and cheese, with beans. The smell of humanity and livestock is ever present. When it rains, there is no school, because the teachers cannot make it through on the road.  If the kids make it through school, their education ends at 6th grade and they have to decide to leave for “the other side,” or stay and farm.

At the Pastora’s house, we washed the dishes in the same pila that held the water that was used for making the food, and as we found out later, as a watering trough by the cattle, chickens, cats, and dogs. The bathroom out back was a glorified porcelain squatting hole barely hidden by a sheet; it’s roof so short that I couldn’t stand up straight. As we left the Pastora’s house to spend the night with a neighbor (since they had an unoccupied bed), we were warned to use this restroom before we left, because there wasn’t one where we were going. 

All this to say, this community defines marginalized.

Not all in Caliche is bad by any means. The people there are wonderful, happy, and determined to improve their condition. They’re hospitable, respectful, and hard-working. We are praying heavily about how we can involve ourselves in this community’s development. They are actively looking for support; making appeals to various organizations and the municipality for assistance. More than once, we’ve met some of them at the base of their road to take them to a meeting with the mayor. These walks required them to wake up in the middle of the night and walk 4hrs in the dark and rain, just to go to a 10 minute meeting. Needless to say, these people are motivated and are doing their part to better their community. We’re thinking and praying about how we can come alongside them, not develop dependency, and help them guide their development process with them leading the way in Christ. Please join us in this process.

Fun Note:

The return trip out of Caliche deserves a special comment. When we arrived, we were 3 (Stacey, me, and Erik). When we left, my little, purple, 4-cylinder Toyota had 2 white people in the cab. In addition, the bed of the truck contained:

  • 1 Honduran pastor
  • 1 Honduran child
  • 9 Adult Hondurans from Caliche looking for a ride, and
  • 400 pounds of corn

Altogether, we were 13 people, with well over 2500lbs in the bed, and all this on the worst road I’ve ever seen. The towing hitch dragged over boulders, through deep mud (some requiring more than one attempt to get through), up ridiculous rocks, through ditches and ravines, up and down real mountains.
 
We in America have been lied to about what vehicles can truly do. When we pulled out of Caliche, absolutely loaded down, I told my dear wife that if we made it out to the main road in one piece, I would write a letter to Toyota taking back all of the nasty things I’ve said about them over the years and praise them for their many fine vehicles. I will keep my word, and I will post a copy of it on this blog. I never ever believed I would say this, but…

Toyota is awesome.

12/1/11

Baptism... Honduran Style


Hondurans know how to baptize. We were blessed to recently attend the baptism of two local churches. For those of you that aren’t real familiar with baptism. Let me give the background and what is expected. What many Christians believe (I happen to be one of them), is that baptism is a Christian’s response to Christ’s example. Jesus was baptized back when He was on earth, and he urged us to do the same in order to show we are walking in His way of life. When we go  under the water, it signifies us leaving our old way of life, and when we re-emerge, beginning a new life in Christ. By being baptized, we don’t believe that anything of eternal consequence happens; faith is of the heart. However, it is an important and exciting day for any believer. It’s a day when you tell the world that you’re taking your faith seriously. Strange way to do it though, I know. 

Anyways, if you would go to a baptism in the US, you would expect a solemn minister slowly sprinkling water on someone, or if you’re from a more… dunking tradition, you would hop in an oversized bathtub in front of a church (strange again), a pool, or maybe a local pond with a few of your family and the church there. Well, that’s not the way they do things down here. I was expecting some sort of dirty river or hole of mud somewhere locally  when we climbed onto the old yellow bus (with chrome wheels, thank you very much). When we arrived at wherever we were going, we walked down through the trees awhile until we popped out next to a nice little swimming pool next to a beautiful river. How nice, thought I, a pool. But, we walked past the pool and followed the river… to this.
 

It’s seriously one of the most beautiful waterfalls we’ve ever seen. Tropical to the hilt, about 50 feet tall, with clear, clean water. Being there with Eduardo and Ada (read below – “Story of a Family”), was really moving. While we were all gathered together on the bank Pastor Fredy explained the significance of baptism to everyone gathered, then sang and prayed .



 The action then moved down to the water. The two pastors walked into the pool of the base of the falls and two lines of men followed them in and made an entryway for those that were there to be baptized. The singing started again, louder this time, and one by one, the new believers went forward, were submerged, then came back up. I can’t imagine a more perfect way to start a new life. The baptized arose into morning sunlight, on a warm day, at the base of an unbelievable waterfall, and the only thing they could hear over the roar of the falls was the singing of their friends that love and support them on the banks of this river. Needless to say, it was an experience.


 

These people, that have so very little in this life, were richly blessed that morning. Our prayer for those people that morning is that they would come to The Christ that saved a prostitute on the brink of death at the hands of the religious, and gave her the hope to live in freedom. The Christ that demands we work for the good of the oppressed, marginalized, and forgotten. The Christ that “had no tears for his own grief, but shed drops of blood for mine.” Following the baptism, this beautiful mixture of young and old, orphan and father took communion; and together, we remembered this Christ. Let it push us to serve in His way.

(FYI, there will be more higher-quality pictures in the Pictures tab.)

Damos gracias a Dios; por nuestro familia internacional (for our international family).