Honduras Missions

The Ritchie Family / Children's Lighthouse

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Holy Week tropical

It has been an interesting week so far and more to come I am sure. Had two aniversary services in two churches in the mountains. One in the day time another at night a few days later under a red moon. Rush to fix kia leaks before Sunday. Begin blocking up the septic system in a church on Monday. Then Tuesday the preacher schedualed did not make it and the pastor was feeling ill so at the very last moment the third string batter was up,.. me. After the long drive up, they wanted to feed us. It is proper to accept when they are all waiting on you with food that is hot... considering the ladies carried coolers a couple of miles on their heads to feed you. As if that was not discomforting enough, what makes it real uncomfortable is,... only we eat. Everyone else just sits around us and watches us eat... Hungry people and children looking in the doorways and windows as well as those already gathering in the church, all watching us eat. We are the only entertainment at this point in a place without electric and all eyes are tuned into the local channel. When done we move to the new building. I saw we had a few visitors from other denominations and was led to a message. Why am I a baptist? The plan was preach, then a movie, then cut the huge cake Lisa made...  after eating around 5pm the kids helped set up lights off the kia inverter (no electric for miles here) and prepared for the movie, then song service with numerous specials and testimonies, then preach/teach. We are the only light on the mountain top. I would talk a while and ask shall I continue or start the movie? The reply was always continue and the response was good. By 10pm it was decided not to show a movie, they would have continued... but I told them I was done and to cut the cake... (Real reason? It has now been 8+ hours and no real bathroom and still 2 more hours to get to one.) Good thing there was no second floor and I was younger. Most had a long red moon night walk home... and ours was a long drive. The odd thing is I pulled a muscle in my leg preaching. As if I was like Billy Sunday or something... But all I was doing was returning to my seat... I am no longer getting old, I have arrived and staked out a claim. Hard to shift gears because of leg on ride home. Arrive home slide out of kia and legs dont work like I want, plop down I went. Grab a chair and use it as a walker and make my rounds then bed...Yeah I have full title to land in Oldsville.  I am just an old polar bear living in the tropics...Welcome to Honduras... during Holy week... Still more to come by Sunday. A sunrise service in one church and an evangelistic outreach at night in another...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Boys need supervision

Finally got power... all the outages did something to the substation. Strong winds knock out power and toppled 2 trees on the Children's Lighthouse property. The boys and church members helped clear them out of the way. Lenin had been cutting a limb about 15-20 feet up. He got tired of wacking more than half way through the thick part and "rested" by stepping higher up above the section he had been cutting and wacking a smaller limb with the machete... Boys need supervision... And before yelling for him to get down... take a photo... Gotta have priorities.. :)

Saturday, April 5, 2014

When there ain't no duct tape...

May 31 was very Honduran day. Expensive, hot and a lot of treading water. But a good day even if only by degrees. Lots of very hot degrees. 106 of them. Sunday the kia lost power steering. Need to rebuild the rack. The mechanic had found another valve cover too. Head out early, 6am to drop it off and hope for the best as we head north to sign on property for a church. Talking with mechanic at machine shop we saw the frame was broken as well, all the way through for the 14th time. Call a welder friend and explain what I want done. Ok now we leave northbound. Off we went squished in little 3cyl vehicle that spit and sputtered the whole way. Stopped an hour+ out to pick up our pastor, shut off car and it wont restart. 30 minutes of tinkering and we are sputtering down the road again to meet a judge and the property owner, more tinkering then 30 more minutes northbound. Arrive and wait. and wait,... Talking in the park with the two people (only two in town) who are also christains. Keep moving down the side walk trying to stay in the sliver of shade. Judge can't make it in today, but he calls the nearest lawyer friend... 40 more minutes north, outside the capital. We talk to her on the phone to find the property owner needs certain paperwork... which is an hour back... but needs fuel (which is even farther away) and has no money. Give him fuel money and head farther north to lawyer's town sputtering away... and wait. Eat lunch at a roadside stand, and bake in sun and wait and wait. You would think the higher elevation would have cooler temps, it did not. it only put us closer to the sun and more UV. Property owner finally arrives, lawyer sees us, reads everyone's papers and finds the property owner does not own his property. ops. He is embarrased and upset. Because he bought it 8 years ago but the previous owner wrote the papers for only the size of his house, no more... Step out of the house and it all belongs to the previous owner. Sooo that needs to be fixed first. Strange as it sounds... quite normal here. Say goodbyes and sputter back down the mountian and break down. Over heat the car. Ask a home for water cool it down tinker, fix wires and sputter down the mountain as sun sets. Call mechanic shop, kia is done and he will wait for us. Actually he will wait for the money. Detour to ATM. We have spent 12 hours in 106 degree cloudless day with almost no shade. All exposed skin is crispy. Arrive back to mech shop...get in kia and turn on the a/c and enjoy the moment solis sunless rest while the mechanic tinkers with the other car. Arrive home and Lisa, teacher and kids still preparing for yet another inspection by the government Tuesday... and we have to go pick them up because their car is broken.

Tue… Go p/u our government inspectors. One of them happens to be the person who has been against us on several occasions. Wee… They walk the house make their notes and comments, talk to some of the kids and leave in much less than expected time, and somewhat happy… Giving us a the equivalent of an A+ on everything. Wow. They leave and I go to a local tire shop to put the front end back straight, swap tires ect. At the tire shop I got the opportunity to talk to one of the city priests. Very chumy talked about many things... then I turned the conversation to salvation and he was in agreement with most of what I said, but suddenly had to go out side and check if his car was finished and waited the rest of the time in the 100 degree+ sun... hmmm... At least he heard the truth.

The rest of the week lay more pvc for water system and prep for preachers meeting Sat. Had a few of our pastors stop by to talk… It is always good and helpful… and long. Some of them pour their hearts out seeking biblical answers. It is humbling to open the Bible and answer them. Today I headed out early with 2 kids to help serve the pastors. MarcAntonio preached a message so strong every pastor had problems with it at times. He did not leave any stone unturned. I gave a lesson after but the Lord had freedom to work and did more healing of old wounds, strengthening of some, support of others and set out to schedual a few things. Finish by running everyone around to catch buses. In all a great morning. While I was gone our sheep gave birth to two lambs male and female. We were also sched. to have a policeman (we led him to the LORD a few years ago) do a safety class with all of our kids. It too went well. How often do you see a policeman on official duty stop and pray as part of his safety class…. Amen! As far as the toyoto photo in the corner… We had a debate following him… was the scotch tape holding the non working lights in, rust lightened tailgate on, or bed together… consenses was all three… Welcome to Honduras…

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