We’re six days into our mission with only one day left before we start our trip home. We’ve built 60 stoves and repaired 12, lead bible study for roughly 110 children each day, ministered to the residents in an elder home, made lasting friendships, and realized how many more blessings we are receiving than giving. It really has been a humbling experience. We've read all your emails and comments, and love that you have been with us on this journey. You make us smile and we love you for loving us!
Jesus loves the little children
Today at VBS the children heard the story of Creation and why God made them. They were told how special each one of them is to God and how Jesus died for them. They all bowed their heads and prayed the salvation prayer for Jesus to come into their hearts and help them live for him.
We used Popsicle® sticks to make a cross for their craft project and they decorated it with rickrack. They all received a gospel bracelet and were taught that the colors represent the elements of faith; black=sin (Romans 3:23), red=the blood of Christ (Romans 5:8), white=purification (Acts 3:19), green=spiritual growth (2 Peter 3:18), and yellow=the kingdom of heaven (Matthew 3:2). We taught them John 3:16 this week as well as the song Jesus Loves Me in sign language. They were eager to learn everything!
It was extremely hard to say goodbye to such precious children and dear helpers. We know God will use what the missionaries have shared as the Holy Spirit reminds them of his love.
We gathered the mission team and all the local volunteers we worked with this week for a final group photo. The ripple effect of all that was shared here will never be known.
Stoves, stoves... I LOVE new stoves
Today, while Marilyn took care of VBS and wrote up what they did (above), Judy and I helped install and repair stoves. Well, I'll be honest and say that I helped Rick with a few metal rods and screws, helped bend and tie a couple of wire heat protector screens, and I handed Rich and the guys a few fire bricks. The stove team pretty much had their system down pat so I tried to stay out of the way and just take pictures.
Most of the people in Xojolá are tiny if you haven't noticed in the photos. They are hardworking and they seem to be happy. They have definitely been gracious and kind to us.
We were in homes with very elderly people who have cooked over open fire pits their entire lives. They were so pleased and proud of their new stoves. Our team added the wood and lit the stove for one excited lady and her parents.
In each home, I gave out wooden cross necklaces. In our last home, one of the girls went into the house and came back with the beautiful headband I'm wearing below and a basket for me. Both were handmade, and the basket was something that they were using in their home.
It is very humbling for someone with so little to give you so much. I thanked them with a big hug and tears in my eyes. So very, very blessed today!
Judy worked with Joe and Ken's team. She actually sponsored several stoves and was present when one of her stoves was installed. She met the lady below who received it. Very cool!
Joe and Ken needed to repair a stove in a home too far to walk so they got to ride in a tuk-tuk. Lucky ducks!
David, Freddie and Frances worked together again today.
Freddie said that installing stoves today was very special. But what brought her to tears today was when a few teams finished early and the children spotted them coming from a distance and ran toward Joe, David and Jim to greet them and hug them.
This morning when we arrived in Xojolá, some children were waiting by the road for us. And some were already in line for VBS. We are loved here and we LOVE being here!
I'm Karen, a member of the EAMC Mission Team from Topsail Beach, N.C. I hope to share our experiences of ministering to the Mayan villagers of Guatemala though our photos and bits of information about our day-to-day projects.