In 36 days the first short-term mission team of the summer arrives. This summer we will host 15 mission teams from all over the U.S. This year, for the first time, we will host two short-term mission teams simultaneously. All those mission teams will sleep in the dorm facility on the site of our downtown ministry center.
We are racing to get the second floor of the dorms completed so the teams have a place to sleep and eat on site. We are confident the dorms will be livable by the time the first teams arrive. This week and next we have nearly doubled the number of Honduran workers to get it all done.
Our regular weekly workers are laboring hard to get the bunk beds completed for the second floor. Each of the four dorm rooms will be able to sleep 10 missionaries simultaneously for a possible total of 40 at one time. The guys are cutting and hammering the wood and building the bunks in each room. Ten new bunk beds in all.
A welder and a team of window installers have been hired to fabricate and install all the internal doors and windows. The doors to each room consist of a solid metal door and a second door to add security and keep mosquitoes out. The windows have mosquito screens, external wrought iron for security and glass. This dormitory will be a safe and comfortable facility for the visitors.
Before the teams come we still have to install ceiling fans, toilets, an oven, and all electric outlets. We have to build or purchase tables and benches for the onsite dinning hall. It looks like will be done with plenty of time to spare.
Each summer we bring short-term mission teams down to help us with projects. Each summer we use those teams to help us build houses for the poorest families in Armenia Bonito. Our goal this summer is to build brand new homes for the three most needy families in Armenia Bonito.
Mike and our teammate John went out looking for the poorest of the 300 homes in Armenia Bonito. We saw some incredibly sad situations. There are so many families in need and it is painful to say “no” to anyone. But, the reality is that this is one small aspect of our ministry and we don’t have the time, manpower, or financial resources to build more.
Each house we looked at was no more then a shack of sticks or scrap metal. They have dirt floors and often have families of four or five sleeping in one room together. Some have no running water or electricity.
Through our experience and John’s design we have refined our house building so that we can build a new 400 sq. ft. home with a cement floor, cinderblock walls, doors, wooden windows, electricity, water, a septic tank, two bedrooms, an indoor toilet and a small living room, all for only about $1,400. It takes inexperienced short-term mission teams about a month per house.
Please pray for John and Mike as we attempt to narrow our choices down to three. And, please pray for the families who don’t get a new home this summer.
You will recall this time last year we were racing to complete the first floor of our dorms to have them ready for the first of nine short-term summer mission teams arriving in June of 2011. Here we are a year later in the same situation. This time we are racing to get the second floor of the dorms completed by June of 2012 so the first of 17 summer teams can have a place to sleep.
The first of 17 short-term mission teams arrives in Honduras on June 2nd. We have just over two months to finish the upstairs sleeping quarters. These two new dorm rooms have tile and the bathrooms are being finished. We still lack paint, bunk beds, internal doors, glass for the windows, toilets and ceiling fans.
We are ahead of the pace we were setting this time last year, but for the second year in a row it looks like we will be pushing our schedule to the limits.
On the roof, or the third floor, we are building a recreation area to allow visiting missionaries to sit back and relax in the nice cool evening breeze. This third floor area will be covered and have access to protected outlets and its own secure wifi signal. There will be no walls to allow the breeze to blow through, but there will be a tin roof to protect from the rains.
When completed this dorm facility will comfortably sleep 40 short-term missionaries. It will have 12 sinks, 12 showers and eight toilets.
Outside the dorm, on the same property, we are also making progress on our ministry center. This facility will eventually be the home of a church, a homeless kids drop-in center, a high school, a seminary and a medical clinic.
Please be in prayer that we have the time, finances and resources to complete the dorm building before our 17 short-term mission teams arrive this summer.
If you would like to financially contribute to the construction of this facility GO HERE.
With the pace we are leading these past few days one might think we are trying to do harm to our visiting short-term missionaries from Manor Presbyterian Church of Cochranville, PA. This is simply not true. We just want them to have plenty of chances to serve the people of Honduras.
Monday began with a medical clinic in the community of La Fe. Erin, the Troxells and the guys from Manor hosted a clinic in a dilapidated home and treated 48 people. This was our second clinic in the community of La Fe and the people were very appreciative.
In the afternoon the guys from Manor joined Mike in Armenia Bonito for English class.
In our weekly ESL class our 25 students reviewed greetings and the alphabet. The guys from Manor had given us some Spanish/English flashcards. Those came in handy as we reviewed colors, clothes and body parts. At the end of class each of the kids took their oral exam by going over vocabulary and reading a line from the book of John.
Tuesday saw a little rain, but nothing that would slow us down.
In the morning the guys from Manor worked alongside our Honduran employees at our ministry center in La Isla. They worked on the floors of our soon to be church, kitchen and StreetChild center. Lots of dirt was shoveled, moved and packed to create a solid foundation for the floor.
In the afternoon Erin, Mike and the guys went out to Armenia Bonito for Kids Club.
Over 40 kids attended Kids Club. They played games, did a craft and watched a bible skit. The kids continued in their verse memorization and answered catechism questions. The guys from Manor helped quiz the kids. This was a special day. The kids who had attended 6 of 8 Kids Club classes and had memorized the verses and questions (19 kids in all) received recognition, a certificate, a gift and a plate of food.
It has been a busy few days. We are fortunate to have the guys from Manor helping us.
Manor Presbyterian Church of Cochranville, PA is back for more punishment. Manor has sent us a short-term mission team for the fourth time. This group arrived on Saturday and will serve by our sides for a week.
Previously this church came to Honduras to serve with us twice in 2011 and once in 2010. These gluttons for punishment are already scheduled to return for their fifth trip in June of 2012.
They arrived late Saturday. On Sunday we treated them to a tour of La Ceiba in the morning. In the afternoon we all attended Gringo Church in our home and then Spanish language church in town.
It will be a joy to serve with these men. We have a very diverse experience planned for them. Check back here, or on Twitter, to see pictures and stories of their work.