Honduras Missions

The Ritchie Family / Children's Lighthouse

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Just another day...

The 3 American preachers have now left after a last hurrah. Friday we were suppose to preach at a public school in the mountain and Pastor Santos church, but rain, flat tires, and a non working 4wd made us late in getting up there. So we missed preaching in the school because all the students had already gone. But the teacher still wanted me and jr to look at the solar system they have to see if we could get it working. Jr translated very well for Brother Phil in church and Seth gathered a crowd making balloon animals. As we sat to preach the bats flew in seeking a dry place to perch…and no one gave them any attention, like a normal visitor entering to listen. Bats in mosquito country are welcome friends. Saturday we divided and preached in 3 different locations. I taught in the public school of our kids with a soul winning video and handed out Bibles to all the students since it was national Bible day. 80% of the students are from catholic homes. Our children had arranged for me to do this (then asked me) and did not tell the teacher what I was going to play or teach… They wanted their school friends to see the video and trust the LORD. Amen for the effort, but the steam blew out and our kids were a little disappointed as the school director dismissed everyone because of rain at the most critical time in the lesson… prayer. So its in the LORD hands as always. Randolph went with Omar to Trapeche and Phil and Seth with Carlos to San Geronimo. Brother Randolph found out what it was like to ride like a real Honduran in the back of an uncovered truck in the rain (someone keep my bible dry please!). Then Sunday finish preaching in La Cruz. As usually nothing goes according to plan…with a tropical storm billowing overhead. Monday drive up to Tegu with lots of washed out placed in the road, even more dangerous at night. But in all it was a good visit. We have Lisa and 6 children sick today. Barry Jr took the preachers back to the hotel one night when I was tired. Hard rains, defrosters not working right, and a little lack of attention…well, he backed out of the hotel and hit a car. So on top of all other expenses, I now must fix a big dent in the door of the car of lady living across the street from the hotel. After dropping the pastors off I took the kia in for repair. Replace broken door handles hard to get in or out without those. Fix the 4wd, ps and idler pulley that quit or broke this week. Finally arrive home to find the well pump also not working, so no water….water, water everywhere, but none to drink…or shower in, or was dishes or flush or… weeee.

Welcome to just another day in Honduras.
Unworthy servant to a Worthy Saviour,

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Long Days and Short Nights...

Long days and short nights for the three visiting preachers… and us. Went to Santa Teresa yesterday but the KIA 4x4 would not engage(needs repair). We made it but it was rough.. Don’t need 4wd just more speed! Which worries Brother Worley, I think he has learned to just close his eyes and pray, but he keeps asking “How do you get this 6 foot wide vehicle through these 5 foot spaces?”. And torrential rains that followed us up hindered the solar panel install. Brother Robert and Jr got the lights up in the church making it the only light on a hill. Brother Seth preached a good message and got a few stirred up with his illustrations. After dark we headed down and even I was worried about a few spots we had to cross after the hard rains. One washout ravine was dangerous with a cliff on one side. I paused a moment and almost took the boards from the back to make a bridge but a heavy throttle allowed the Kia to cross up and straddle it. Had I missed it would have went down a cliff. A mile or so later I was driving a narrow slippery ridge almost balancing the kia and the back end sliding sideways. Brother Worley commented, “You got a washed out ditch on this side” I said “Yes but I have a 300 foot cliff on this side and I would rather slide into the ditch than fall off the cliff”…He agreed. All the while the children are in the back singing hymns at the top of their lungs and Seth and Bob ard learning many ways they should not bang their heads. They both complained of sore heads and rears this morning.
Today we preached in another large public school in one of the worst neighborhoods. Brother Randolph preached well and hands were up all around. Brother Worley got the chance to hand out tracts and John and Romans and got mobbed. That charged his 70 year old battery and got him excited. Pictures are worth a thousand words they say but being here to experiencing it is a large volume book with lots of photos…
After the school we went to the military base to preach. Brother Randolph preached a double header and did great. A few minutes in, the main military colonel came in, shook my hand and sat down to listen. He was one of the 3 that trusted the Lord as Saviour. Amen!
Lisa made the cupcakes to share and fellowship after...needless to say they went over very well.

Tomorrow we head back to the mountain for a school and church meeting. Pray we can do all that needs to be done. We are always loaded with burdens…
Unworthy servant to a Worthy Saviour,

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Sometimes pictures are the only way to share it

Seth Buckner is visiting us here from Texas. He is a representative for the Fellowship Tract League and has come to Honduras again. I think to charge his battery on tract distribution. He also brought a couple of preacher friends to witness Honduras first hand. Phil Worley is a veteran evangelist of more than 60 years experience. After he preached even he was a little taken back by it all. The other pastor Robert Randolph began to hand out Books of John and ended up trampled. Literally, he tripped as they all pressed him from every side and fell down. He was like a giant piñata that was on the ground being stripped of its candy. How often do you get to see folks yearning to receive a tract or a John/Romans. We preached our first location at a public middle school with 800+ students present. It was a hard to deal with, large group with little control, but many hearts were open. The hands went up all around desiring salvation.

Tomorrow we will go to Santa Teresa and install lights to run off a battery and solar panel, then preach a service afterward. As I was driving through town today looking for the lights I needed I saw a clearance on a motorcycle. A new Chinese motorcycle that would work in the mountains for $750 plus tax. I instantly thought of Pastor Santos. It would help him and his family greatly. Allow him to get to the city anytime and do visitation much easier. I went on visitation with him once in the mountain…and could only walk with pain for a month afterwards. When his wife was sick a couple of years ago, he walked all the way down to my house starting at 3 am and arrived around 10am drenched in sweat, just so that I would go up and bring her to the hospital.

We are in need of churches to contact Brother Paul Deem about sending shelf stable food for the Children's Lighthouse Home and about Christmas Shoeboxes. There is a great need for both.

DIRECTLINE MINISTRIES click here for a link or call 740 667 6166 in Coolville Oh
Unworthy servant to a Worthy Saviour,

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Childrens Day and the Old Watering Hole

An eventful week to say the least. National Children’s day is a big holiday in Honduras. Since we have so many, not just in our home, but in the various churches and school we always are called upon to help. Lisa was up till 2am baking for the school and we were all up late for days making gift bags to hand out in the churches and school. Each one got some candy, tracts, and a trinket toy, plus played a gospel movie and set up the bounce house. The newest church in Santa Teresa was very satisfied.
Barry jr had worked on the datsun distributor to get it going for the men to preach in Trapeche. It had been down for more than a week due to lack of funds. But he found used electrical parts and got it running. On the way up the motor came apart making a big hole in the block. So R.I.P for the old datsun, it has been taking men to preach in the mountain for 2+ years. Not sure what to do just cannot be in enough places at the same time with the kia. La Cruz took what Lisa and the kids did, amplified it and made it a big day with lots of visitors. The Ladies ministry cooked and fed everyone. Carlos preached a tough pointed message to the parents, particularly the fathers. With all the extra work, Lisa came down sick Friday and is still fighting it Wednesday. In an attempt to give her rest Sunday I took the kids to the river “watering hole” and let them play again between services. It is close, free and the children enjoy it. It started raining and I told the kids to get out of the rain before they get wet…some obeyed.. for a moment till they though…but we are wet.

To make matters difficult what little funds we had in the bank got messed up. With a holiday in the USA consecutive with a holiday in Honduras banking can be a challenge. Then have the ATM machine not give funds but deduct them from the USA account…Go inside and complain and have the bank say try it again…and it happens again. Ops now no funds avail even at another atm and the bank only says sorry. So it self corrects in 7-10 days but all the while we do not have access to funds…wee welcome to a little idiosyncrasy of 3rd world missions. With all this going on we postponed Julies BD, though she did get prayered for in church.
Thanks for the prayers, Iris has recovered from dengue.
Unworthy Servant to a Worthy Saviour,

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Moved with compassion...

Just a few brief praises and prayer requests. We had a surprise visit from child services today. It went well. The new southern Honduras boss wanted to see us. They were so impressed they stayed for 4 hours and helped Lisa cook and ate with us. They also want to bring the Honduran President’s wife down to visit us. (She is the head of Infha Child services)… They left then returned a few minutes later to ask us to take a 14yr old girl no-one else would take. She was with Infa visiting us and when they drove away she asked if she could live with us. Her name is “Lady”. She was picked up on the streets in Tegu.. Thankfully they talked to Lisa first so I’m not at fault this time :) I will share more as we learn more and she is comfortable with us. This first night she opened up some, but seemed a little overwhelmed. Never lived in a house with water, or sufficient food or a father, or a bible or? She has never finished the first grade, so we have work to do. The director said schools will not accept her so just try to teach her a trade…. so we now have 21 + 3 more on the way. They gave us papers for the last 3 children and we found out as usual the info we had was wrong. Elder’s name is Elmer, Ashley’s name is Aslyn and they are all younger than we thought by a year. Both dads are addicted to drugs and the mom works the streets… A story repeated many times here. Aslyn is a beautiful baby and very intelligent. She picks up on complex ideas quickly and figures out problems without help. I am dumfounded why/how a mom would abandoned children for a man… But the bible is clear in saying “in the last days without natural affection” and is more prevailing each year

I took Iris to the doctor tonight to confirm she has dengue fever so she is miserable. We also need to do aids tests on the last 9 children to enter the house when funds allow. We confirmed that Patricia’s dad died of aids and had a child with a 12 yr old girl and the baby died of aids complications as well…And her 14yr old aunt (in the blog photo Aug 8th 2010) whom we visited is now with infa because she was “working” too. I suspected that during our visit there by her actions, but it was confirmed to me today. So as we learn more about the children and their families, it is prudent to continue as we have with the rest and check.

. A statement I find is true… Many men have families… but few families have fathers… I told the Infa Director this and she copied it down to use later

Alway in need of prayer... and a few to listen to the Holy Spirit

Unworthy servant to a worthy Saviour,

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

When it rains it …means we get wet.

We picked up 3 of the 6 children yesterday. Jose 8, Elder 6, Ashley 3. Jenny, Toño, Kerinna went with me to pick them up. But only after having to fix the Kia AND Tow the datsun. Monday I took the kids to the river again. Its at a perfect flow and it is close, the kids enjoy it and best of all free. I joked with the children as it began to rain I don’t want to go swimming in the river while its raining I’ll get wet… The kids prevailed. Supper time Lisa called and time to go, only to have the Kia break down returning. We made it back, but lost the alt/fan belt, broke a pulley, drive shaft u-joint let go, and the speedometer sensor broke off…all in less than a mile. Finally, returning to the Lighthouse with all the kids, to find the electric cut on the bodega…which controls our well pump no showers. Wee. Since no one is living in the bodega near the road, we have not got a bill… ops. Barry and I took the old Datsun Tuesday to town to try to take care of things. Had to find an old electric bill and go find out what was owed. (we have to hook the power lines back up ourselves) Also take the drive shaft and look for belts, and return to fix Kia before going back to town to pick up the new children. On the way back the datsun broke down. The only thing left running was the 4wheeler, Talk to Police at the checkpoint then Jr went to the Lighthouse to drive it back and we towed the datsun back with the 4 wheeler down the highway. Did a temp fix on the Kia then left to pick up children to find only 3 ready. The other 3 would be the next day. Returned to the Lighthouse Tono took over care of fitting the two boys into our family, and Jenny instantly adopted Ashley as her little sister and began babying her and taking care of her. To the point her own little sister felt a little slighted. I was tired and sat in front of a fan when Kerinna came in climbed up and laid across my chest looking me eyeball to eyeball. With the most serious look. I asked “are you sad?” “Yes a little.” I knew why so I began to explain love is like seeds the more you plant the more you have, you should be happy Jenny is planting seeds. It’s not like candy that you give away and have no more… She then said “Will you get me a little sister too?” I had to laugh. Iris has already laid claim to the next little one that comes into the house. When I left this morning to write this blog, it was the first time Ashley cried then went limp in Lisa’s arms…it tugged at my heart. I picker her up for a hug and she sprang back to life...only to do it again as I drove off. Now to go pick up the other 3 children…
Unworthy Servant to a Worthy Saviour,

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