Research Guatemala

Research Guatemala.  You will have a quiz on Monday, Nov 26th.  You should understand the history of the Mayan culture, how spanish came to the area, the recent Civil War (which the US was involved in), the different religions, the basic geography, and things like exports, and basically have a good sense of what Guatemala is like.   

Here are some resources you can use: 

https://youtu.be/QaKJAc0CQB4   

https://moon.com/2014/02/religion-in-guatemala-mayan-spirituality-catholicism-and-christianity/  

http://thefactfile.org/interesting-facts-guatemala/ 

https://www.ducksters.com/geography/country.php?country=Guatemala

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God is so Good

You guys, we had a crazy-amazing missions trip. And part of the crazy was trying to get home. But you know what? God was with us every step of the way. I saw Him as our first two flights, at different airports, we’re canceled due to “medical problems with the pilot”. We don’t know how serious that was, but what if it had happened when we were in the air? I saw God in how we were provided with free meals that tasted good and filled us up.  And in how the teachers had credit cards to pay for extra food on our journey.  I saw God in the woman working for Aero Mexico who stayed for 4 hours, until 4:30am, and figured out how each of us would get home, without complaining. I saw God in the 5 star hotel they put us up in, and even though I only slept for 30 minutes before I had to wake up the first group to go home, I saw God in how that 30 minutes on a hotel bed left me more refreshed than 5 hours of sleep. I saw God in the teens who were dealing with our travel mishaps with positive attitudes, who prayed for all of us to make it home, and shared encouraging scripture over breakfast. I saw God in the adult leaders who were being patient and positive. I saw God on our flights, where we slept and just enjoyed one another’s company. I saw God in how we had 5 minutes to run outside in Cancun, and yes, hug some palm trees. I saw God in how we had enough time to eat before our last flight and the airlines made sure we had the right boarding pass. I saw God in the parents who picked us up, were patient in waiting for us to fill out lost baggage claims (since ours went to Montreal with the other group), and dropped us off where we needed to go. I saw God in how even though I left all my keys in my luggage, He gave me the forethought to leave a spare house key with a friend who met me at school and drove me home after midnight, even though she had to work today. And I still see God in how we had today to rest. And in how our luggage arrived to Kelowna and it’s on the way to our homes now.  And in how the last half of our group is so close to home.

God is so good, you guys. And I can’t wait to (hopefully) go back next year.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.  ~James 1:2-4. ~ shared by Caleb over breakfast 🙂

NEW flight Plans

So, we were all ready to board our plane to Montreal at 1am, when the announcement was made that the flight was delayed until 9am.

It’s now almost 5am, and we have a new plan.

We are splitting the group into two because it’s the only way to get everyone home Sunday night.

Group 1 is leaving at 9am on flight AM680 to Montreal, then flight WS3533 to Toronto, then flight WS513 to Kelowna, arriving at 9:54pm Sunday.

Group 1 is Mrs. Huntington, Mrs. Lane, Mr. Baker, Carter, Ryan, Joni, Daniel, Bethany, Brooklyn, Riley and Kurtis.

Group 2 is Miss Ramsey, Mr. Luth,  Katelyn, Brooke, Tim, Caleb, Ethan, Janna, Daneya and Carson.

Group 2 is taking the 12:40 flight AM577 to Cancun, then flight WS2177 to Kelowna landing at 9:53 pm, so we will both arrive at the same time Sunday.

Parents, please make sure we have enough drivers.

I will also email the school and excuse students from class Monday and Tuesday,  but if your child is staying home, please let the school know.

Now everyone is asleep in a beautiful hotel, and I need to start waking people in about an hour, so I’m going to try to sleep too.

Pray that we see you tomorrow!

Flight changes

So we had to get off our first flight due to a medical emergency for the pilot.

Now we are flying out of Guatemala at 6:50pm, to Mexico City, Montreal, Calgary, then Kelowna, arriving around noon, I believe.  I will let you know when we get our new boarding passes in 2 hours.

Can all the parents please contact each other and make sure we’re good for rides?  And make sure everyone knows?

Thank you!

Last night

Well, it’s our last night in Antigua.  We had our last debrief, and now are scattered around the hotel worshiping, packing, talking, playing Uno.  And it’s such a beautiful thing.  To have the freedom to have deep, spiritual discussions or sing along with our amazing student guitarists, or play a game with teammates who now feel like family.

Thank you for blessing your children with this experience, and we will see you in two days.

Antigua

We made it to Antigua!

Tuesday was a full day of rain, which was tiring for many of us.  Monday had miraculously been a rainy day, except every time we went outside it stopped raining.  So when we fell asleep to rain Monday night, woke to it Tuesday morning and realized that our day was going to be wet, we didn’t realize we were in for some changes.  We visited the Catholic church in Tactic, then, for the first time in 17 years of ministry, our guides took us to a hardware store to buy gum boots for the whole team!  We went back to the work project to move dirt, and on our way back to the guesthouse I got the call that our children’s ministry was canceled as the government had closed all the schools in the area for Tuesday and Wednesday.

At first it was really disappointing, but Impact worked quickly to arrange new plans for us.  We did a tour of the Impact land and saw the finished orphanage our last team had been building.  Then we had time to do two home visits and bless those families with prayers and food.  That evening we heard testimonies from two people who live in the area.

Wednesday we visited the Chicoy sinkhole then after lunch had the opportunity to do children’s ministry with an Impact school that was still open.  It ended out to be such a blessing because they were so excited to see us, and couldn’t stop giggling.  It made it so much more exciting for us.  Also, because it was a spur-of-the-moment change, we were the only leaders and had to plan a drama, worship, do all the talking and share the Bible verse.  Everyone kicked in, and it was so much fun and the students did an amazing job stepping up to the plate.

Today, Thursday, we packed up our vehicle and drove back to the same school we did children’s ministry in the day before for devotions.  When we arrived, it was like we were celebrities.  We were walking to their Chapel and all the elementary students were waiting to go in and holding out their hands to us, trying to touch us.  Inside, they were running over for hugs then going back to their class lines.  They were so excited!  After our last hug line, we got in the vehicles and drove to Antigua.  We took the students for a walk around the city, then went for dinner and ice cream and walked and round a bit in the dark.  Now they are realizing this hotel has WiFi, so they’re busy.

Blessings

Monday Updates

Buenas noches!  It has been two days of amazing activities and God’s blessings.  Thank you for your prayers.

Yesterday we went to church at one of the Impact schools where they hold church and Tim was baptized.  It was really amazing how the people of Guatemala wanted to bless Tim.  They dug a hole, hauled over a tub that belongs to Impact and is used for baptisms and put it in the hole full of water.  It was so beautiful to see all the congregation surrounding him and witnessing this event.  He spoke for himself, and Mr. Luth also spoke for him.  Bethany videoed the whole thing, and many others took pictures, and there were some tears as well.

We went for lunch at a restaurant then joined a youth group in downtown Tactic and walked around doing street ministry where we handed out lollipops to adults that had a Bible verse attached and we said, “Dios te bendiga, Dios te ama”, which means “God bless you, God loves you.” It was amazing to see their smiles of joy for receiving one small gift and a blessing!

Last night we had an interesting cultural activity that you will have to ask your children about!

Today we joined the first Impact school in Chamche for their chapel, which was amazing to see how the children worship God so openly.  It is a pre-K to Grade 7 school, so after we got over 200 hugs, one from every student at the school!  That was so special to us, and for many, it was the highlight of their day.  Sometimes we forget how important showing love is to our children.  e

We then heard more about what Impact is doing and heard from the new principal, who is struggling, but also loves the children so fiercely.

After we did a construction project, which we will continue tomorrow.

This afternoon we did our first day of children’s ministry and had a chance to rest.  Some of us walked down to the cafe and had fancy drinks and cake.

This evening was amazing.  We had a debrief after dinner, and during worship many team members broke down.  I always pray for the students to break – which sounds horrible, but what I mean is for the walls they have built to fall down.  For them to feel freedom, be in God’s presence, hear his voice, feel his love.  And tonight was such a blessing, as many experienced just that.

Please continue to pray for strength, for physical endurance and for bodies that are hurting (back pain, headaches, some coughs).  For long, restful nights of sleep.  And especially that everyone will break on this trip.  That we will all experience God, hear his calling, and make a decision of what that means for the next step in our lives.  What will we change when we come home, so we don’t lose what we good has come from this trip?

Thank you and bless you.