As materials for the Maranatha one-day churches are still at the border, everyone began the day organizing and preparing supplies. We cut out Sabbath school felts, organized for the afternoon Vacation Bible School, counted thousands of pills, dividing prescription doses in Ziploc bags, sorted hundreds of clothing items, folding and organizing them by size, and the list goes on.
The medical team spent a large part of the day organizing supplies, getting acquainted and sharing some of the miracles God has performed in bringing the team and materials together. “There are literally hundreds and hundreds of dollars worth of clothes, glasses, medicine, diabetic and dental supplies that have been donated,” said Brenda Duerksen, Coordinator for Maranatha medical clinics. “The stories are amazing.”
“Before this trip, we were doing a health fair at the hospital where I work,” said Pam Wilson, our team medic. “I asked what they were going to do with the 200 toothbrushes and 100 toothpastes that were left over. They weren’t really sure. I said, ‘I’m leaving for a medical mission trip in a couple weeks. Could I have them?’ And they said sure!
The construction team pressure-washed and painted the first coat on Chinandega’s Central Adventist church, checked out their one-day church building site, dug holes for the churches supporting poles, tore down the old outhouse, and shopped for outhouse building supplies. “We got to visit with some neighbors near the building site,” said Rob Miller, construction superintendent. “Seeing the poverty was almost more than I could take. I’ve never seen anything like it. The biggest impression on me is how much we have. I walk around neighborhoods like this and think, in our country many people are losing their homes, but they’re not having to live like this. To realize this is where they come home to and sleep every day…it’s just really humbling.”
The kitchen team enjoyed shopping in the local open-air market for our food supplies. “It was fun to see how the people here live every day,” said Donna Hubert, assistant cook.” It boggles my mind to how they make do with so little! They are such common sense people, and practical. We are so indulged in America. Makes me wonder what I can do without.”
The first Vacation Bible School started at 4:00 pm in the town of Posoltega. Melody, W. A. senior, and Pastor Greg Taylor began song service with 34 visitors, but the number soon increased to over 90. The kids enjoyed the Bible stories, games and coloring. This is the same town where a one-day Maranatha church is soon be built. “I’ve never done anything like this,” said Janelle, VBS team member. “This was awesome. I’ve got to go on more mission trips.”
After enjoying homemade bean burritos with fresh mango/pineapple salsa, several W.A. students shared highlights of the day:
Monte: “We were really hot and thirsty working on the church today, and Jose, a guy from the church we were painting, brought us a five-gallon jug of water and a really really cold drink. It was awesome.”
Hannah M: “We went to the market place today. It was really cool to see the culture and how they do things. It was really crowded. Everyone seemed to stare at us, but people were really nice to us.”
Grace: We went to the suburbs of the area where we are building the one-day church. All the houses were made of tin and sheets of plastic. We met a lady who dug a 15-foot well by hand all on her own. It was amazing. She dug it all out and then lined the bottom with concrete bricks. At the top was a tractor tire. This was her water source, but the water was still really dirty and contaminated. Her house had sheets of plastic for walls. Better houses in the neighborhood had tin siding, but many just had mud with plastic. If any kind of natural disaster came through there, the entire community would be just gone!”
Monte: “I looked over the wall at the church where we were painting, and there was a bunch of scrap metal there, then I saw a bunch of chairs sitting out there, and realized people lived there.”
Hannah F: “The outhouse at the church we’re building was just a cement block over a hole. There were tin sheets around it but we tore it down today because we’re building them a new one.”
Alec: “Materials for the outhouse we’re building were delivered by horse and cart.”
Monte: “In town I saw a guy driving around in his little tiny car. He had these two huge five-foot-wide speakers on top of his car. They were sticking up above his car and he was just blaring some advertisement for his business.”
Hannah F: “We went by this whole area where there were all these really run down houses…and they all had satellite dishes. There was like 20 satellite dishes!”
Grace: “When we went to the market and there were just a ton of vender stands. They all looked the same. Garbage all over the street…there were just these huge piles of rotting food. It makes you think ‘How can someone live like that?’ We saw this little boy who was like 3 or 4 years old…and it was just automatic to feel pity. But he was so happy! He saw us and smiled really big.”
At evening worship and sharing time, Hannah F told everyone about her visit to the one-day church site. “They have an unfinished shelter that is just posts in the ground with a partial ten roof. I talked with Mr. Carlson and we found out if we each of us give just $3 of our spending money, we can buy the rest of the tin and finish their roof.” The tin is ordered.
Day three is over.
Look for more mission trip pictures in the gallery and photo tour on the home page