Saturday, December 13, 2014

mid month recap

Thought you would like a more recent picture tour...here goes:
 
The Sunday school rooms in Cantaranas are almost done, at least enough to move into and begin using.  Stucco could come in the future, maybe paint, maybe a second floor...but for now it is what the Church needs...dedicated teaching space outside the sanctuary.
 
This is Jonathan, pastor in Cantaranas, working on his coffee field, doing some harvesting.   We support our pastors, but encourage them to find ways to be self supporting, as well as of course encouraging the Churches long term to help their pastors as well.  His coffee helps him, and in this case also helps the youth of his Church, as he was paying many of them to help in the harvest to make money to be able to attend the CIY conference coming up in January.  Many of the youth in the Churches that want to attend those conferences need to work, scrimp, and save all year for the opportunity.  All of the Churches in the mission participate...including many more around the country, to the tune last year of somewhere between 200 and 300 attending.  They are looking forward to another great year growing together in Christ, forging new friendships, and seeing old friends that sometimes they only get to see in person at these conferences. 
 
We are making progress on finishing the wall around the main mission property in Tegucigalpa.  At the same time...installing an electrical fence to go with the serpentine wire.  After some recent concerns, this will help secure the facilities, and just get us where we should have been a long time ago.  
 
This is pastor Edwin from Danli.  This is a Church plant that came about without much if any initial support from us.  We are just not cash flush enough to help them forward much, but do what we can.  This includes involving Edwin and the Church in the clothing ministry, which helps their evangelistic efforts, as well as providing a bit of income for him.  Now, when we have a broken dental chair, some people would just throw it out...but Oscar and Edwin talked, and they are planning on using it as a barber chair now as well.  We are also helping them with building a lean-to on a small piece of property they are leveling for Church meetings.  God willing in the future they will be able to find property and actually build a secure facility...but for now this will have to do. 
 
I bet you never thought you would see this machine...let alone that it would say "La Macarena."  All that is missing is a gas engine and you have what you need to "depulp" the coffee after harvest.  This takes the red cherry off the "bean" for drying.  One more step in our coffee empire.  Ok, just one more tool to be able to use to help speed the process of the harvest this year.  We have a used model for Las Botijas, but Sampedrana needed one as well.  Otherwise we pay per pound for renting another machine.  This machine should pay for itself in a few years time. 
 
 
Speaking of Las Botijas, although coffee farming is our priority there, there are opportunities to do more.  Including some piggies.  Opportunities not so much for the mission...this is between Oscar and Gustavo, but an opportunity nonetheless. 
 
And while they are at it...looks like we will be producing milk and veal on the property. 

















And this is a sight we love to see...coffee drying.  We are not self sustaining yet, but each year more of the plants are producing, and producing more as the grow higher and fuller.  This is one harvest...each plant harvests several times over these months, as the coffee matures at different times. 

We will likely be able to produce all the Hill Climber coffee we will need for 2015 ourselves, and have extra to sell on the open market (less profit for sure, but still profit)

We might be even tinkering with a special edition coffee for 2015, a darker roast in 1/2 pound packages.  Check back in a few months after we do a few tests and see what we find out.   
Not sure I shared via this forum...but the coffee in Las Botijas was also tested in the US by a roaster and got a score of 88...specialty grade coffee, among the top 8% quality in the world.  Pretty cool stuff. 

 

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Reader's Digest Update...the unabridged additions

We sent out an update for December that was somewhat abbreviated...which I am guessing is usually preferred and most likely to be actually read.  No harm in that, nature of the beast.  For those looking for a bit more information however, you have come to the right place.

Yes, we definitely drove more than 6,400 miles, or at least I did.  Valerie and the kids were there for quite a few of those though, no doubt there.  The drive to and from Florida accounted for quite a few. This time back in the US is not normally a vacation at all.  You might be surprised how many people think that is what it is.  This time we did get to do some fun things as a family, but especially for me the reason for these trips is to communicate with supporters and supporting Churches (those that invite us to stop in and see them) as well as hopefully make more partnerships as the mission certainly has upcoming need for more financial support to do more here in Honduras.  It is hard being away from home in general, especially when we cannot be together, but definitely for a good reason.  Balancing both is tricky. 

The time with family is always the hardest.  At least this time we deliberately schedule time, often it is just stuck in when we do not have anything else scheduled.  Even when I am staying at my parents when Valerie and the kids are back in Honduras, that does not mean it is all quality hang out time...still lots of work to do, places to go, and computer work needing done.  This trip was good because we were able to stay at a free facility in Noblesville for us to stay together as a family and have at least some semblance of normalcy in the midst of the chaos.  This is likely the last time the kids will see any of their extended family for two years, maybe more, so it was good we were able to do that...not enough, but some.  Definitely a different relationship for them with their extended family than I had growing up, when I practically lived with my grandparents at times and saw cousins and aunts/uncles regularly.  That part is hard...but I am thankful for all the family in Christ they get to see and know in groups that come down throughout the year, a real blessing for sure, especially the ones they really form long lasting ties with over multiple trips.

The board meeting was just very cool.  Everyone coming together in one location (normally they are phone based meetings, which are just harder, especially tackling harder topics than just an update on everything happening) and with common goals.  His Eyes is at a point where it could grow and change like many missions do to the point of needing US staff for fundraising, coordination, etc.  Do we go that route?  Do we deliberately not?  How do we take care of the missionaries and help them have margin in their lives and not overwork to the point of burning out and leaving or not being effective?  Where do we focus?  Sometimes the answers are good...but not what you want to hear.  Realizing we cannot start the sewing ministry back up, at least for a year, is disappointing...but also a good thing for all of us.  There is so much going on, it would be easy to just keep adding plates spinning, and running us more ragged at the same time.  Their outlook (and experience) helps keep us on an even keel, and will continue to help define roles to limit us to where sometimes we might naturally over-extend ourselves. 

In terms of the changes in the clinic...this is just a long time coming.  Valerie has been working more than two full time jobs trying to be clinic director and optometrist (not to mention mom, short term group support, counselor, and more) and one of the things we were able to harvest from our time of counseling/talking in Colorado was that she needed to leave one of those behind for her own good.  Darwin Pineda was a FAME scholarship recipient we have known since our first trip here...former youth member, then youth pastor, and now doctor.  His time to serve with the mission (a two year minimum requirement from getting the scholarship) is coming up, and instead of only being a doctor, having him focus most of his time being the director will be great...with the time to implement so many needed changes we have known for years but not had the time, plus his connections (he also works in the morgue and teaches in the university here) will benefit the clinic greatly, especially in the future when the possibilities of adding services (like ultrasound in 2015?) becomes more of a reality when we have space. 

One of the changes the board has had to point out to me is that I will be me not spending as much time in the field, but more time at a desk/computer.  Tough...but necessary.  That will require depending on more of the individuals in charge of ministry doing more on their own, but we are just simply too spread out for me to try to have my hand physically in every area.

The good side to these things is that they all play into the fact that we are trying as a mission to develop Honduran leadership.  Darwin may serve a minimum of two years...but hopefully many more.  Some of the work Oscar and I do will have to be done by Oscar and some as yet unknown future Honduran staff member...who could eventually take over some of Oscar's responsibilities as well, and so on from there.  None of us is long for this Earth, and the goal is to form a mission that can operate without any one of us.  Already that is being done to great extent in the day to day operations of the Churches, clinic, etc. but we have to improve on that in terms of overall leadership as well.  Missionaries from other countries can be a huge benefit, but long term that option will not always be available (do you know how hard it is to find missionaries willing to go?) and ultimately Hondurans will best relate to Hondurans. 

So, there you have it.  November for me was spent in the USA, but dealt a great deal with Honduras; for how we can strive to improve what we are already doing, change where needed, stop (at least for a while) where needed, and through it all seek God's guidance.  Will these should be positive, change is always scary, and will have transition periods that might not be quite so much fun. 



 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Building a bit more

Not much time to write, but wanted to share a little of what I am seeing (just like you via pictures since I am in the USA right now) of the work continuing.
 
Via the very generous donation from Sherwood Oaks Christian Church, Oscar took what hopefully will be the last materials needed for the Church in Cantaranas to finish the Sunday school rooms...the floors, doors and windows. 

That will be exciting for them to have some dedicated teaching space for the kiddos, and secure space at that.












The corn container arrived finally, with some customs problems and such, but what else is new?  Custsoms changes....in paperwork, personnel, in looking for people trying to bribe via fake paperwork and personnel, in unloading everything to make sure we are not crooks, lying, or worse.

42,000 pounds of corn now that we will have to be able to share with people that need it...and need to hear of God's love. 

How are we able to get all that corn?  The Bryantsville Hunger Relief Project works via farmers in Indiana that grow this crop specifically to donate it...high lycene corn.  IDES (www.ides.org) helps pay for the shipping to get it to us, and also helped with half the funds to buy the container we are using to store it...secure storage for only the food we receive will help us keep it pest free.  And of course our good friends at Master Provisions helped us out coordinating all the shipping and logistics from the US side of things.


Our welding continues on the property...a puck lock being applied to the new container seen here, but in the background you can see the structure for the floor above the garage for the Fords...an area that as of yet we are not sure what that roughly 1,000 square feet will be used...but I am sure we will know it when the time comes.














Here you can see a brief video of Oscar getting a little help from our supplemental 4x4s to get to the coffee farm in Las Botijas.  The work is also continuing there...hard work, sometimes hard work just getting there, but we are pressing on nonetheless.

Hard work abounds, not just there but also with the coffee (and road) in Sampedrana, and keeping things going with Channel 15 in Talanga, and in general helping all the Churches...as well as how to deal with the ongoing clothing ministry needs (and how to help get the message out as to what kinds of clothes we need here.)  Please pray for all of that if you would...and as well for some security issues throughout the different areas of the mission right now (and of course as a country in total)...praying for us to have good decisions on how to best protect everything, to plan ahead, how we would respond in showing Christ's love, and for the salvation and repentance of those that are involved.  


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Overload

When people ask about how things are going here, for probably longer than I realize, the conversation usually ends with me saying something like this "busy...but that is better than the alternative!" 

My intent is to say better to be busy with more than you thought you could do, through Christ, than languishing doing less than for which we were intended. 

However...I am coming to realize just how overworked we are.  Last week when I was with the group, I was thinking of the literally weeks of accounting work waiting for me, and some time to get that done, and then was reminded Monday was a holiday.  I thought of Valerie and the kids being home, and doing fun stuff with them, my first reaction was "ugh, I do not have time for a holiday." 

That...is when you know you know you have a problem.  But really, I have known that for a while, that was just a big ol' warning sign. 

Part of the counseling we attended was addressing overwork among other things, and with the board of directors we have been trying to address this and see what changes can be made.  Changes when it comes to spreading a work load mean more staff and thus more money...and while of course it is up to God to provide for that, taking the steps in faith to get out of the boat to that end can be a bit scary...especially when here I am the guy that has to figure out how it all works out. 

I love my job, I love where we get to live...but sure it can be overwhelming. 

I spend almost every day a group is here with them.  This year that will be right at 120 days.  This does not take into account the work associated with hosting them pre-post arrival (shopping, many emails, meetings, planning, accounting, etc.)  Conservatively figure the equivalent there of another 45 days.  (Some say it is more of a 1:1 ratio for them)

Accounting for the mission...all internal reporting, reporting for Churches, reporting to help guide local efforts that might not be required for fancier reports...figure another at bare minimum 2.5 days per month or 30 days. 

Answering general ministry emails, handling ministry social media, helping with online coffee, and anything else that requires the computer for writing and such...if we count the hours, figure another bare minimum 60 work days worth on that per year.

Meetings with Valerie, Oscar, Jana, Justin and minimally with the rest of the staff (mostly with pastors) for planning or approval/disapproval/changes in plans and such?  Again conservatively 15 days a year. 

Overseeing other mission stuff...vehicle repair, banking, errand running, insurance (medical and vehicle) clothing ministry customs work, milk project supply purchasing, all things that involve me in hosting interns, and probably some other stuff I am forgetting?...figure another 50 days per year. 

Oh, and the usually once a year trip to the US for visiting supporters and hopefully meeting new supporters...that takes a month or more (this year almost two months...but we will only count for these purposes as separate works days since some of it is spent still on the computer working and such 15 days.)

If I were to observe a traditional work week of 5 days per week (with no vacations or holidays mind you) that would add up to 260 work days a year. 

However, we find adding all this up (and I think I was a little too conservative on a few of these) equals 335 days a year.  If that was not bad enough...that equals 6.44 work days per week.  How does this work?  Multi-tasking, less sleep, not truly taking a day off, and picking up the computer every at opportunity...as well as having a passion for doing it all.  Loving what you get to do (for the most part...what missionary loves fundraising or going through crumpled receipts?) helps tremendously to doing more than you otherwise might think.   

To be quite honest, rather than sharing this as a pride thing for how much we work...this is embarrassing, shaming in fact. 

I know it to be true...with the thought about the holiday (I did try to take the day off...I just worked four hours that night) and the ways I am even more about "getting to the point" (who has the time?) with conversations with...everyone, and just a general feeling of if I turn around there is another fire needing put out.  This is not healthy for me, for the mission, for my marriage/family...the list continues. 

Already I am trying to simply eliminate myself from certain activities, handing some off, going to try to not spend every day with groups, and leaning more on the other missionaries to carry out more of the leadership and implementation of what the mission is doing...more than I was already doing. 

This year has been especially trying in terms of growing/stretching/learning on this topic among others, and I suspect that while we try to slow down, and not take on more projects as a ministry...God will continue to grow the overall impact of the mission, and financial needs of the mission to make that happen. 

So...if you would, pray that the financial part of the puzzle would be met in such a way we can focus on the ministry aspects here of carrying that out, working better and more complete as a team (making time for more meetings, more reconciliation, more harmony) and for His direction on how to proceed on all fronts, finding the balance He wants for all of us. 

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Pulchritude

The group from Journey CC left today, Valerie is overnight at a women's retreat a few hours North, and I find myself again with a hankering to do some blogging, something that has fallen to the wayside as of late, because something had to, and I sometimes I ask the question here, somewhat like Pink Floyd "Hello, is there anybody in here?"

I was going through pictures to share, found one of a definition of the title of this blog posting.  Pulchritude=beauty apparently.  I fail to remember how I stumbled upon the word...but I found the meaning ironic given the way the word comes across.

So, you could say I have a pulchritudinous life.  It is good, beautiful in fact, but if you just pronounce it out, it might not be seen as such. 

In August Valerie and I flew to the US, a trip required of us, but one we were glad to take as well...just probably would not have made the time had it not been a requirement.

As you can see...we flew out to LAX, did a few tourist things (you might catch a quick glimpse of us October 27th on CBS in the morning) but then made our way driving to Blessing Ranch in Colorado for a week of counseling. 






As you can see...Blessings Ranch is in a very picturesque part of Colorado (near Laramie WY)

We had time to talk some about how we work in the ministry, how we work in our marriage, and how we work/function as individuals. 

It was truly a blessing, one which will continue to bear fruit I think for quite some time. 





After the week there...we drove back just a bit to get to Sacramento CA to be able to visit Valerie's sister...the first time she has ever been able to visit her, and first time to see our new niece Noelle.   

It was a short time, but so good we were able to do that. 














We went down to San Francisco as well to fly out back home (which...ended up being much more of an adventure than we were seeking) to get to see Valerie's brother Darin and spend the day with him. 










Back in Honduras the work continues.  I love that whether we are here or not...God is working in His ministry.

Oscar sent a picture of the work on the Sunday School rooms in Cantaranas and the work they were doing there...this is putting up a new material we tested for the second floor/present roof.  Much cheaper than poured concrete or other methods that might not be as strong, it may be a solution for us in quite a few other areas as well in the future! 










The group here this week helped with the milk project building retaining walls.  It seems the retaining walls are taking a long time...but then, there is quite a bit to build. 

I do not think we will have the funds to get the fill needed and columns poured this year...maybe with groups next year we will be able to at least get eventually a floor down.

In bummer news...someone stole almost 100 of the blocks we had ready to set, as well as the scaffolding we were using. We had them there all summer while we were working, but the fence we have up around the milk project property is not as secure as the clinic fence.  Sigh.  Well, when we get the block walls up, we will not have to worry about that again.  Praying for those that stole from us, may God drive them to repentance in Him.    

  
 Soren had his birthday last week...and shares a birthday with Shaun, which is pretty cool!












We continue to keep Teto the welder busy. Often in the past when we have needed a welder, it has been hard to find someone available who is good. 

So, this summer we have had to bit the bullet and get many things done that we had been putting off...like this new official sign on the gate for the clinic. 

It looks like we will be keeping him busy with other necessities for about another month at least.  

That sign exudes the word pulchritude, right?

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Kids update

How about an update on the kids?
 
 

Soren loves being...Soren.

He took a liking to these frames, and was even quite insistant we take this picture (with the tag...this is how we rock in Honduras.) 

His sense of humor is sharp, quick, and just really good. 












He is also becoming a tinkerer and inventor.

He takes apart clocks, nerf guns (including one at Church when we were practicing beforehand...quite a shock to a pastor to see heckling taken to a new level) and anything else he can find.

Goggles are great for wearing in the back of the truck (why has no one thought of that before with the wind?) but also for making a bottle man. 








Cecilia adopted another cat in May.  This very small and malnourished kitty wandered into the mission property...and when she fell for it and Valerie did as well...that was all she wrote.

Spock is now another member of the family and unofficially Cecilia's bunk mate.

Cecilia has been sharing her bedroom with interns for several months this year...maybe six?  She has handled it very well and has been good for her, stretched her, but she definitely has two cats wanting to share the space as well. 








The kids being off school this summer has made for several opportunities for them to be with and work with the groups that have been here, including a few nights getting to stay with the groups, learning some new games and having fun in the evenings.

Cecilia loves Euchre and has taken to it very well since learning over Holy Week...she gets very excited over different hands she wants to remember after the fact to see how she did...I found this picture on her camera.  Alas, no picture to let us know how it worked out. 

She also loves many different fingernail polish colors and textures. 





Cecilia continues to grow tremendously working with the groups translating and helping...and sometimes leading.  She has helped coordinate in the milk project, do house visits, hospital visits, paint (she loves to paint) and anything else she can do.   She really has a gift for language, translating...and telling people what to do.  That has been something we have seen since she was three. 

I asked her recently what she wants to study when she graduates...just gently probing for the future, and she said it does not matter, she just wants to do what I do.  I knew what she meant.


Soren is not always as excited for translating and such (unless football or other sports are involved) but has helped out a bit mixing some concrete and such as well. 

They have been of much help to us this summer, and it has been great to get to spend more time with them.  School quickly approaches...as does a MK camp they are getting to attend a few hours North of here, they are excited for that, it will be cool to see what God does through that for them...they almost never get to hang out with "peers" like that.    

Drug trafficking...one small example

People sometimes ask me about the drug trafficking problem here. 
 
Is it really that bad? 
 
Somebody has to make and transport all those drugs that people in the USA cannot seem to live without. 
 

This partially submersible vehicle was found because it had problems (makes them easier to find when it is aground.)  Pretty spiffy outfit really...six crew, plenty of room for whatever an illegal boat/sub might need to carry, a big ol' Cummins engine, and a nice blue color.  What more could one ask?  Made out of fiberglass in case you were wondering. 
They had a nice platform so you could see inside with the windows how things would be laid out (including fake bundles of "contraband"), and this plaque to explain how they found it, the size, etc. 

This is one sub...that they found.

Kind of like the several planes per year they find that have crashed.

How many are not crashing or having problems that are making their way daily back and forth? 

Quite impressive actually...if it were not destroying lives along the way and at both ends. 

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

So many stars in the sky

...and like them so many things to do.

Among the plethora of things going on this month, I gave blogging a back seat.  I had many an idea, many a rant (including a still unfinished blog about emotionally and spiritually wrestling with visiting Hospital Escuela for myself and those that get to go with groups) but other things were more important.  Some of those being my family (although not as often as I would like), I am ok with that trade off.

We had two more groups through July, and another intern as well, making our sixth for the year.  You can see Beca (aka Ceiba...aka Calabaza Blanca...we have tended to get creative with nicknames this year) in this picture working with one of the groups to finish the columns for the future corn container and its upstairs neighbor.  It looks like she is holding up the column...at least that is what we are going to tell everyone.

We do not actively recruit interns, but wow are we so glad to have them. God blessed us abundantly this year.








We got the new Ford this year...and among routine maintenance on the other ones...seen here is a minor fix needed on the white Ford I drive.

No big deal, just the entire cab broken in different places, falling apart.  Routine right?  At least it is here.  You can see if you carefully look...that on the wall there is a crack that runs the full length as well.

Teto the welder is almost full time with us right now...we have been paying him to weld things all over the property for over a month now...things that have needed done for quite some time.  When we discovered this problem...we were especially grateful we had him already there.

A few hours later...good as new, or better.  And no more squeaky seats.  Now the next time I have a squeaky seat I will be paranoid the entire vehicle is falling apart.


The groups are helping us a ton on the milk project building foundations and retaining walls.  As we engineer the building/walls as we move along, we think that getting one floor at street level will also give us two "basements" along the way.  One of them will have a very high ceiling in fact.  How those will eventually be used/divided will be interesting to see.  Bathrooms?  Play room?  Bat cave?  All in God time.

We needed the blue Ford for the big group of 30 in July, but a few days before Oscar used it for a trip to inspect/help with the ongoing Hill Climber coffee work in Las Botijas.  Along the way was a truck dumping some manure on the side of the road.  Oscar being a good steward, and having a shovel...could not resist free good fertilizer for the coffee plants.

We did wash it out thoroughly before the group needed it.










Here is Jose Luis and Oscar talking in Talanga...we need Sunday School room (or rooms) there for the Church, as right now they have no where to meet, and it is getting to be a problem just trying to meet outside (noise from either bothers the other, not to mention the sun, rain, etc. outside.)

Finding another $10,000 or so for another lot to build rooms on is probably not in the cards right now (unless you know something I don't?  Hey...it could happen) so we are looking at this narrow section of the Church property to build something for the interim until God provides another route.  Cost for something like this lean to where the pastor's truck is parked, with some walls...maybe $400.

I would love to buy the next door lot and get started on something bigger and longer term stable...again, all in God time.


An anonymous donor provided supplies and some meals for some very talented young people from the Church to do some murals.  Here is one of the finished products (four or five total)...







....and the inspiration













Speaking of painting...another coat of Hawaiian Waters went up on most of the Mission House and man cave with the last group.  It looks so much better...and one color, than prior.  To paraphrase Frank Burns "It is always nice to see things look nice."

Thankfully we had our new 30' ladder from the US to reach the tough parts.










Not to be outdone...that same group came with some very talented painters in their own way.  They did not know they were going to do murals, but ended up completing two!

The first one (referencing Isaiah 55:12) went so well and so fast...that seemingly out of nowhere I had an idea to see if they could do a version of Vincent Van Gogh's "The Starry Night."  I printed them out a picture for reference...

...and they nailed it!  I could not be happier...especially with the two nods to the buildings on our campus included.

It will be hard to walk by there every day without stopping to appreciate it, along with all the other murals of course, but I have to admit this is my favorite to date.

I forgot to grab a picture of the other mural work being done on the outside of the wall...using some of the paint we had leftover from other projects or donated, I will try to get that one next time.

I could not forget the SFC!  The groups have also continued with the dry wall efforts there as well.  Without them, we would be stopped, so it has been great to see them make such progress.  Realistically with two groups left this year...we will not get the clinic portion opened by the time the clinic opens from vacation in January 2015...but again...all in God time.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

The Walls

Writing this month's update, I realized again I had fallen behind.  I must admit...I feel falling further behind, playing catch up, and trying to multi task through conversations more and more as of late.  That so much is going on is good...but not so good personally when you can not concentrate on one thing for the pull of attention from another. 
 
Spiritually we try to tear down the walls between us and them, whomever them might be.  Physically though we seem to be doing quite a bit with walls, as I am referencing in this month's email update riffing off Pink Floyd and their "The Wall." 
 
How about some more information?
 
 
The retaining wall for the milk project property is seen here through our makeshift doorway from the clinic campus side (two walls in one picture visible, I just noticed that!) 

It will need to go up almost 80% higher than it is in this picture, just to get to the street level where we want the first floor to go.  That will make for a sizable "basement" we are creating on the second property.  Maybe even a two story basement!
 
Justin has been busy in the green container up by the clinic...cleaning out, reinforcing (with our welder's help) for a future floor above it, and building shelving units to put on the walls for medicines and other clinic supplies.  It has been great to have him here and see already what a jump we are getting on that inventory side of things.  Excited to see what he will continue to do in that role.  Hopefully he needs many more walls for shelves in the future for the clinic supplies he will be helping us coordinate and get as well! 
 
 
 Back to retaining walls...this went from just the empty hole to a finished retaining wall (not quite finished in this picture) in about a month. 

This will be a home to two more containers one on top of another, for food storage, and the other for more general mission supplies...as we are continuing to struggle (in a good way) for good storage space for the supplies we receive. 






Murals are going up.  This one in Cantaranas with some anonymous help for supplies and paint for some volunteers from the Church to do that study art in their schools.  We are excited to see the finished products soon.

Always great as well to see members of the Church eager to use their talents to give back. 












Members of the greater Church in the groups have been helping with two more murals on the clinic campus as well. 

First the CIY team did a bird (seen on a black background on the far left) with the Bible verse Luke 12:24

"Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds!









And then this week's group did this beautiful butterfly with Philippians 4:8

"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things"

These murals are not just pretty to look at, they are encouraging to those that come in to the clinic...many sick, many hurting...physically, but also spiritually.  We are so grateful for the artistic talents of so many...we hope to keep this going as future group talents so permit.

And of course we are still working on the walls of the second floor of the clinic.  But hey...we are at least now working on the rooms of the clinic side of things! 

We hope to get four rooms done or nearly done by the end of the groups in July, maybe even some cabinets installed?