Dear Friends and Family
It is good to be closing out a long wonderful day with a note to you.
Chris Abel began our day with devotionals at 6:30 on the deck overlooking Omoa Bay. It was a spectacular morning and Chris challenged us with an in depth reading and reflection on John 21:15-23. This familiar passage took on new meaning for me personally and I encourage you to carefully read it a few times. It might help your day; it did mine.
We had a nice breakfast of scrambled eggs, watermelon and porridge (kind of like oatmeal) and were all off to the Children’s Village.
We split into about three groups there. Most of the kids were at school in Cortes today – except the 10 littlest ones.
Our friends from Washington State and Chris A jumped back into the Aquaponics project (raising fish and vegetables for food for the children with in a closed system). They continued to make progress. Today they got much plumbing done and repositioned the containers for the water flow. They also gathered some local aquatic plants and are trying them in the fish tank to see if it will be a good source of fish food. Talapia, by the way, apparently eat anything including, Chris reports, they will clean your fingernails thoroughly when you put your hand in the tank! Our fish team was joined today by a few of the Honduran workers which is a good sign. We really need the locals to take ownership of the project for it to have a chance to become self-sustaining. Many “gringo only” projects eventually fail so this is a key element we hope in turning over the Aquaponics.
Leslie, Sharon and Chris headed to play and work with the toddlers/babies who were not at school. Much fun was had; play dough (purple is a favorite color), cut out dolls with stickers, book reading, soccer ball kicking, and much more!
Bill and I spent most of the day on maintenance projects. We were in one the little boys’ room for about 4 hours. 10 boys (age 4-10) live there – the room is about 10 feet by 20 feet. While generally clean, the truth is that the youngest boys are bed wetters and the resulting smell is very strong. We installed a ceiling fan, cleaned vents in a room air conditioner unit, fixed a couple fluorescent fixtures and repaired the door lockset. The amount of maintenance tasks is overwhelming at the Children’s Village and while we made progress today, the list is way too long to feel good about.
Heavy on our hearts today was the new family of 5 children that had arrived on Saturday. The youngest two girls were at the Village – Naomi the 1 1/2 year old and Joana the 4 year old. (the oldest three siblings were at the school). Both these little girls are not doing too well. Naomi is sick. She is listless and cries constantly. Leslie held her for 3 hours today trying to console her. Sharon was able to feed her a bit of food as Chris held her at one point. We are not sure what is wrong right now. Joana seems healthy – but just not happy – or better said, she is very sad. This family has been broken apart – despite the abusive / difficult circumstance that they were in – they are now not with their mother who gave them up. I am sure it is not possible for me to comprehend what these precious children must be thinking. They are safe and Heart to Heart intends to try and keep these children. They are working with the state agency, who actually sent the mother with her children to Heart to Heart. But financial resources right now are an issue for this Ministry.
Heart to Heart spends about $250 per child per month to provide each a loving home and give them an education. It’s not a lot of money in the States for sure – but here it is, especially since the Ministry right now is running in the red. Can we help more? I think we all know that answer.
Leslie has posted a bit more information on these new children at her blog site – maybe you might visit? http://leslievorndran.com/2013/10/01/Naomi/
We all climbed into the van around 4:15 – hot and sweaty – for the 30 minute ride back to Omoa. We all enjoy each others’ company and the fellowship is terrific – so close quarters is ok!
A few of the team went for a swim and everyone showered. We gathered for our daily debriefing at 6 where much of the discussion and even more emotion centered around Naomi and her siblings.
We had a wonderful dinner of seafood, vegetables, plantains, rice, beans and plantain pie! We were joined tonight at dinner by Joseph Rahm, his wife Haley and their two young children. Joseph is the director of The Leadership Center here in Honduras. After dinner we chatted for a couple hours about the challenges and importance of educating young people in this very poor country.
It was a good day here. We are striving to be the arms and legs of Christ, and feed his lambs, to the best of our ability. We appreciate the support of all our friends and family back home. Without you, we could not be here.
Dan – for the Mission Team