We hope you all are doing well; you are in our prayers and thoughts as we minister here in Honduras. We have been busy over the past 3 months and want to share with you a little of what we have been doing.
Easter season is a time of remembering the death of Jesus here in Honduras. The week before Easter Sunday is called Semana Santa or Holy Week and most families take vacations or have family gatherings with lots of tamales. Each year there are celebrations with parades walking over the alfombras. Alfombras are carpets made of sawdust, flower petals, beans, rice and other materials forming pictures reflecting the death of Christ, Mother Mary and other Easter scenes.
We were able to visit a city and see the carpets being created. It is truly a work of art; some begin work as early as 3 am to be ready for the parade at 10 am. As believers, we walked the streets viewing the scenes of the Easter season knowing that as sad as the death of Jesus is, He rose from the dead! The tomb is empty and Jesus is in heaven making intersession for us. Oh, how great is our God!
This year everyone had to get new license plates for their vehicles. Our month was May and the deadline for all license plates was the end of May. But, as usual, things change quickly in Honduras. On the 5th of May, we received news that all new license plates had to be picked up before May 15th. So, we planned to go the next morning. We got up early and was at the office around 7:15 waiting for it to open at 8:00. It seems that not only the people assigned to get license plates in May were in line but also everyone who had not gotten their license plate at their designated month. We were not the only ones wanting to get an early start, the line went around the building but worse was the parking.
The owners of the mini mall where the license office is located decided to redo the parking lot! It was needed but timing was not good. We found a spot to park and got in the long line, 4 hours later (2 hours outside and 2 hours inside) we had our new license plates. The next week the new news was that they decided to extended the final deadline for new tags to July 15th. The lines were short again. Oh well, at least now we are legal. While standing in line we watched the parking lot being formed, one wheel barrel of cement at a time. Everything was done by hand; leveling the ground, packing the dirt, mixing cement one wheel barrel at a time, dumping it out and smoothing out the surface. It was a long process in the hot sun but the men worked steadily and got the job done. We went back a few weeks ago and it is so nice to have a smooth, cement parking lot, lined off, to park in.
As we mentioned in our last newsletter, there is a new kid in town (so to speak). Ministerio Vida is the rehabilitation center that has opened for men with alcohol and/or drug addictions. They currently have beds for 22 men but are housing 30. The additional men are sleeping on mats in the church. We are discovering that much of the work done in the other Vida ministry locations does not translate to this remote mountain culture. We are now part of a board of missionaries, pastors, a lawyer and representatives from the two mayor offices that are in the process of reorganizing this ministry. New policies and procedures are being established to operate the ministry the way God directs. Please be in prayer for these men, the ministry and the board as we build a place for God’s life changing work to touch these men.
In April the COVID needs were less so the original building used by Teach Me 2 Love, the school for special needs children, was no longer needed as a medical clinic. The directors, volunteers & a mission team gathered to paint and clean up the building so that the children could come back together for classes in “their school”. All 14 kids got to meet together again in one building for the last month of school; it was great! May was end of year for Teach Me 2 Love since it runs on the American schedule so the last day we had a big pizza party along with a birthday party for all the ones with summer birthdays. What’s a party without a pinata? There was lots of candy for all. Our wonderful truck played a big part in this. Transportation for schools had not started back so the parents had to find a way for the children to get to school.
Since we were helping out, we had the privilege of taking 4 of the children from our area to school on the days we volunteered. As we returned home, we carried 3 more children and 2 Moms to dropped off near their homes. On the last day 3 of the boys along with one of the volunteers got to ride sitting in the bed of the truck. They loved it! We could hear them laughing and talking and they had big smiles as they climbed out of the truck at their homes. We sure have missed seeing these kids, they are so amazing! They love at all times, even when they get upset it only takes a few minutes until they are back laughing and having fun. Oh if we could be like these kids enjoying every minute of every day.
May also brought an end to the Saturday Club Aslan young teen meeting. The leaders returned to the states to do 2 youth camps and raise funds for the upcoming year; unfortunately, this has to be done. The youth always have such fun gathering together playing games, hearing about God and, working together on crafts. Club will start back in August.
Our little church had a special month of May as Pastor Jon encouraged groups of persons to share a testimony or a Bible lesson with the church. Gene & I, as missionaries, shared first. I shared on Jehoshaphat’s statement; “We don’t know what to do but our eyes are on you” and Gene shared on the story of Joseph, never give up there is always hope in God. The next Sunday was Mother’s Day so 3 of the mother’s shared their testimony of being a mother, losing their father and raising their children to love God.
Then it was youth day, the young people did a great job leading singing, prayer, reading the Bible, giving testimonies and sharing a message from God. The last Sunday Pastor Jon & Alicia closed out the month with a great service. We are part of a wonderful church where everyone loves God and loves each other.
Earlier this year, our Missionary friend here in La Esperanza, Ruth, felt lead to hold a pastor’s conference for the La Esperanza area. She asked us to assist her in this effort and we agreed. We have a Pastor friend from Colorado, Paul, that contacted us wanting to come down and minister in our area. We were able to connect Ruth & Paul and help make the Pastor’s conference a reality.
Over 35 Pastors & their spouses attended. The 5 Evangelical Honduran Pastors that had served in La Esperanza the longest were recognized and honored. Our delicious lunch was catered by one of the Pastors, then Paul spoke with the men while the women had their own teaching in a near-by room. It was an uplifting conference for all.
While Paul was here, we were able to go many places for a time of ministry & prayer. We started off attending a meeting in Tutule; this was a gathering of Pastors & leaders from the surrounding areas, including mountain villages. Following the meeting and lunch, Paul spoke and then prayed for each person in attendance. Words of encouragement and peace were shared from God’s heart to theirs and they received them with thankfulness.
On another day Paul was able to teach and pray with the men at the alcohol rehab center, the men were so excited to hear his encouragement and readily accepted the prayers. They asked him to come back and he was able to visit and minister a second day. For these broken, hurting men this time was such an encouragement and time of gaining hope for their lives.
Our church and the Teach Me 2 Love School are located in Yamaranguila, just outside of La Esperanza, so we spent one day there visiting different families praying for healing and their needs. God was faithful to hear and bless with hope, peace, healing and salvations.
On Sunday we went to the village of Maracia for the morning service. We sat outside with the church folks as Paul spoke and Ruth interrupted then we felt the rain drops so we quickly got the benches and went inside the home of one of the older ladies. The church had built this room for her and to be used for the church. As the rain poured down our spirits were not dampened. Inside, Paul began praying for each person giving words of knowledge from God, restoring hope in their hearts.
When the Vice Mayor of La Esperanza heard about our meetings and that Paul was here, she invited us to her office for prayer. She and several others gathered and listened as Paul Spoke then prayed for each of them. It is very encouraging to know that those over our city, love and believe in God!
We had a great time with Paul and hope he will come back again.
Our ministry friends in La Ceiba at Whitefields Missions were able to have teams come down again starting in June. Praise God COVID seems to be lessening and people can travel easier these days. We drove up to spend 2 weeks helping them out but first…we stopped by the beach in Tela for a couple of days to celebrate our 20th wedding anniversary. The ocean was beautiful, I love hearing the waves splash onto shore. Our journey together has been amazing. Becoming a family with 3 children, leading mission teams, me changing jobs then Gene retiring and us moving to Colorado to attend Charis Bible College winding up here in Honduras – what a life! Most important, Jesus is at the center! We love the Lord and He is leading us daily.
After arriving at Whitefields, we helped prepare the campus for the teams’ arrival, did some grocery shopping and received a lesson in making ‘pan de coco’, coconut bread. We also went to the local school for a visit. It was a make-up day for testing so many of the children were not there but Vicky talked with the teachers and made plans for the teams to visit. The Whitefields campus is not far from the beach and the weather is very hot & humid, needless to say we had to have a “siesta” or at least a rest daily after lunch.
The first team arrived and settled in. Gene & I assisted Bethany (the director’s daughter who is a chef) in the kitchen daily setting up the dining area and preparing meals for the teams. The second team arrived a few days later ready to go. During the two weeks we went to the school to teach English and play with the kids, visited the village to distribute food and do Bible lessons, and helped with Bible club on the campus for all the neighborhood children. The last team held a session for the women with a Bible lesson, crafts and snacks. We had a wonderful time working and serving with our friends.
We want to thank everyone who contributed both financially and prayerfully to the Community Relief project we started in April of 2020. This project was started to help those in need during the Covid crisis while much of life was completely shut down here in our area. We received $9,230.51 into this project. Praise God food, clothing, medicines and transportation was provided for so many people. The last of those funds were just used during the month of June. We will be closing this specific project but will continue to support the community with the general funds we receive.
COVID seems to be about gone here at least we have not heard much about it lately. The hospitals and medical clinics are back to normal but masks are still required anytime you enter a business, restaurant or public place. A negative COVID test is required for everyone entering/returning to Honduras so they are still cautious. We are so thankful for God’s protection over us and our friends here, some did get sick but are well now with no long-term effects. With your help, we will continue sharing the good news of Jesus and see many more victories in the lives of people in La Esperanza, Honduras.
May God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ give you grace and peace.
Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, Philippians 1:2-4
Checks should be made payable to Heart of the King Ministries.
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