Friday, December 4, 2015

A green or red thumb

Sometimes I fail to post on some occasions or items of note for lack of pictures.  The blame is strictly on me I suppose for the lack of skill to tell a story without pictures, or my penchant for books with pictures.  Whatever the reason, there you have it.

These may not be the most captivating of pictures, but the story behind them has long term potential.  
The farm property we have in Cantaranas has been on the back burner in terms of projects or moving forward on anything for some time since the first tomato crop failure.  Prayer and waiting was in order, but now, independent of the mission, a co-operative has formed with pastor Jonathan leading it, and the co-op has received some government assistance for training and equipment, and they are using the property now, little by little to start, but all with the idea of providing employment, education, and of course some income for the pastors and Churches.  
Part of that support was a micro fiber tunnel of sorts...a type of green house, that will keep out bugs and illness, but allow the sun to shine.  As you can imagine, this is no small step.  How this will progress and move forward remains to be seen, but we are greatly encouraged to see the intention to continue this without direct mission support making it possible.  We will be keeping an eye on it, and praying it be a success to be sure, but helping independent Honduran begun ideas and plans is a great thing where we can do it.  I only wish we had the staff and ability to do more of this...but all in God's timing/plans.  
As well the coffee harvests have begun.  While we are confident in the help provided through employment and to see the lands/farms change, it is of course a business and that means investments, changes, and some trepidation about how it will progress financially from time to time.  Life always has its problems if you will.  Here we have our latest investment, a homemade gin of sorts to peel the berry from the bean.  This can be quite the time consuming process, and during harvest everyone is so busy harvesting, that taking time to do this by hand is not efficient, and as well is very hard work.
Here is a video to see all the fun.  The motors used (you will see in these pictures one for Las Botijas and another in Sampedrana) are Honda lawn mower engines I bought in the US.  

The tables and mounts are all hand made by our welder Teto. The peeler itself was bought here in Honduras last year, this just automates the system...a necessary step when you start harvesting more coffee.  This would be then a good problem to have.  

Alfonso had to pick more coffee right then to try the machine out in Sampedrana.  

This is one of the trees right in front of the mission house in Sampedrana for those that know the area.

Can you imagine spinning that wheel by hand for a few hours...or even a few minutes?

The fruit gets put back into the fields as mulch of sorts, or just thrown out depending on where you are.

Another purchase we made to speed efforts and for greater safety was this trimmer.  Much better for your posture than a machete, especially when trying to cut the grass for several acres around the budding coffee plants.

Hard work all of this, and right now Gustavo in Las Botijas and Alfonso in Sampedrana are leading and doing most of it.

Pray that God would strengthen them physically, lead them spiritually in their homes, communities and the workers they hire, and keep the tools, machines and vehicles they use.

The plan here is not just to help the mission be financially more independent, but to be an example in the communities where we work, to provide employment and physical help but also that spiritual light that otherwise is absent.  Oh...and a good cup of coffee never hurts either.

No comments: