Holy Week In Honduras

In Christendom Holy Week is the last week before Easter. It includes Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday and Good Friday. Upon the conclusion of Holy Week is Easter Sunday. It commemorates the last week of the earthly life of Jesus Christ and, needless to say, is a very significant and special time for Christians.

Seguridad_450_339In Honduras Holy Week (or semana santa) is a big deal, but it is a bit different. There are a few Christian celebrations commemorating Christ. But to the bulk of the country semana santa is about beeches, drugs, alcohol and violence. Most private sector employees get two or three paid days off while many government workers get the entire week off. Schools are closed the entire week. This results in an atmosphere of travel, partying and drinking.

Don’t get us wrong. There is nothing wrong with a little relaxation and moderate consumption of adult beverages. But, during semana santa our little beech town of La Ceiba swells with visitors. Commerce all but shuts down and violence increases. Beer tents pop up on every corner and sell bottles at such inexpensive prices that local merchants can’t compete.

Each semana santa the number of auto accidents, drownings and murders skyrocket in La Ceiba. Last year we asked several Honduran Christians what Holy Week meant to them. The responses were family, days off and partying. When we inquired about Palm Sunday, Good Friday and Easter we received laughs and a response of, “Oh, those are things that are only important to gringo churches.”

We pray that our Honduran friends enjoy their time off and have fun with family during semana santa. We also pray that they remember the crucified and risen Christ.

About Mike

Mike, 49, grew up in California and spent 38 years of his life there. He received an undergraduate degree in Political Science, graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary and is pursuing a doctorate from Fuller Theological Seminary. Before accepting God’s call to fulltime missions, Mike worked in the California State Senate for 12 years. He became a Christian at the age of 20. Mike was a Ruling Elder at Soaring Oaks Presbyterian Church(PCA) for seven years. While at Soaring Oaks, Mike served as the Director of the High School Youth Group, Sunday school teacher, and instructor of evangelism. His cross-cultural missions experience includes five short term trips to Mexico, Belize, Guatemala and Peru (Lima and Cusco) through Mission to the World (MTW). He has volunteered with World Relief by teaching and counseling international refugees. Mike has also attended cross-cultural church planting conferences in New York and Orlando and completed the Perspectives course on the World Christian Movement. He attended Bible Study Fellowship for two years. He is a certified instructor through Evangelism Explosion and is a certified trainer of the Darkness to Light child sexual abuse prevention program. He completed MTW‘s Disaster Response Training. Mike is an experienced speaker and author. Over 70 of Mike's articles on missions have been published and he has written three books. He is a trained and experienced mentor, discipler, leader and a passionate teacher of small groups and Bible studies. Mike received an undergraduate degree in Political Science, graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing a doctorate from Fuller Theological Seminary. Before accepting God’s call to fulltime missions, Mike was a Ruling Elder, Youth Group Leader, adult Sunday school teacher and evangelism instructor at Soaring Oaks Presbyterian Church in Elk Grove, CA. Mike is an experienced speaker and author. Over 70 of Mike's articles on missions have been published and he has written three books. He is a trained and experienced mentor, discipler, leader and a passionate teacher of small groups and Bible studies. From 2007 to 2017 Mike served as a fulltime missionary for MTW. Mike served as Team Leader, Church Planter, and Seminary Professor. Mike and his wife Erin served in Honduras in Central America and Equatorial Guinea in Central Africa. Mike currently serves as the Director of the MTW West Coast Hub where he trains and mentors new missionaries from CA, AZ, & NV. Mike is also busy writing his next book.

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