At 3:30 am we all wearily assembled in the motel lobby. There seemed to be a shortage of taxi service at that time of morning, so when one finally arrived, we loaded it with luggage, then walked the few blocks to the airport. This was one plane flight we didn’t want to miss.
There were many smiles and a sense of “being home” when we landed in Miami a little before noon. We didn’t have much time to waste though as we had quite a ways to walk between gates and getting through customs lines was slow.
Arriving in Chicago a little after 4 pm, our group began to disperse. Several families were eager to pick up their returned missionary and met us at baggage claim. The reunions were happy ones, yet there was a twinge of sadness as we realized our adventure was ending. Soon Arlen Mekelburg and his wife, Melissa, arrived with the Wisconsin Academy bus and drove the rest of us back to Columbus.
The trip is over. In conclusion, Jimmy Carter, Nicaragua mission trip coordinator and Bible teacher/chaplain at Wisconsin Academy has some closing comments:
What an incredible and invaluable experience we had in Nicaragua! If you have ever been a missionary or on a short-term mission trip, you know it is difficult at best to describe the sights, sounds, and life-changes one experiences. You have to be there yourself to really understand the flood of emotions accompanied with a “God adventure” like this.
On March 11, forty-two people journeyed to Chinandega, Nicaragua with the purpose of bringing hope, joy and change to a country teaming with beautiful and caring people. On March 22, we realized all-to-soon that our trip had come to an end. As we reflected on how our lives had changed and talked about what God had empowered us to accomplish, the entire group agreed that if given the opportunity to participate in another short-term mission trip, we would do it in a heartbeat! It seems that people go on mission trips with the noble intention of changing the lives of the people in other countries. However, through the hard work, sweat, frustrations, team building, and interaction, I believe that every person also ends up being blessed themselves. After all, “It is more blessed to give, than to receive.”
Through God’s grace, your prayers and financial contributions, our team was able to:
- Build two one-day churches
- Repaint a very dirty and worn out Chinandega Central SDA Church
- Provide three churches with deluxe felt kits from “Little Folks”
- Conduct VBS programs at two different locations
- Host a community medical clinic at four locations
- Give HOPE Kits, diapers, clothing, bedding, etc. to a very poor and deserving community
- Provide hope and the assurance of salvation to people through handing out GLOW tracts
- Touch the lives of many people through our words and actions
On behalf of the faculty, students, and parents of Wisconsin Academy, we would like to say thank you. Your constant prayers, words of encouragement, faithfulness in giving, and everything else done behind-the-scenes made this trip a reality. We couldn’t have done it without you.
To my students: As I’ve told you before, I am SO glad that you chose to give of your spring break to do many incredible things for others. Thank you for being model students! We’re all very proud of you and all that you did on this trip. May God continue to give you a heart of service.
To the adult leadership team: What a pleasure serving with such gifted professionals! Without you this trip would have never happened. Thank you for sacrificing your vacation time as well as donating financially. I am forever indebted. Your attention to detail, Christ-like attitude and hard work made this mission trip successful. May God bless you.
Finally, to my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and Forever Friend: Thank you for sustaining me, keeping me healthy and providing me with a great team of service-minded people. Thank You for Your unending faithfulness.
Until the next “God adventure,” keep serving others starting in your own home and local communities!
Look for mission trip pictures in the gallery and photo tour on the home page.