Wow! What a send-off. Today was our last day in Visiquichum. We were greeted wth loud fireworks and a community excited about the work we’ve done together and the work to do ahead. The children performed another cultural dance in beautiful traditional dress . We heard from a number of community leaders and our team was able to offer words of encouragement. Finally, we were showered with gifts including a woven tapestry that we can’t wait to share with everyone at Riversgate. Many hugs and handshakes later, we were on the road to Nebaj. There, we relished in warm-ish showers, spent the afternoon visiting the regional FH office where Jil lead staff devotions, and enjoyed a meal together to reflect on our time in Visiquichum. What a full and rewarding day! Headed back cross-country to Antigua tomorrow morning and then back home on Sunday. We can’t wait to share what we’ve learned and experienced with you all back home!

Visiquichum Wednesday....

Day three, and it feels like we are hitting our stride here… After waking up this morning once again in awe of the green mountains surrounding us on all sidesand enjoying a local style breakfast of Guatemalan ‘mush’ and fried plantains, we had the opportunity to meet with the volunteer mothers groups here in Visiquichum. They have been at work for three years already, empowered to learn and then train other moms in their own community on matters of infant nutrition and how to care better for their young children. They pray hard, love hard, and sacrifice greatly from their own time and resources as they are actively doing gods work On a daily basis in this beautiful place. It is humbling, to say the least. A highlight was being able to share with them the fact that some of Jesus his closest friends and most trusted workers were women. We also did a craft project while talking about how God knows our names and their stories and laughed while eating chocolate that we brought from home. They didn’t want to go home, so we promised to meet with them again tomorrow and bring another art project did it together while we swap stories!

From there we visited three of the sponsored children from our church family in their own homes, showing them photos, delivering gifts, learning about their lives and praying with them.

The afternoon was filled with vacation Bible school, nearly 60 kids who laughed and danced and sang with us for hours on end. I have been away by the kids on our team, they’re all jumping in with both feet to engage the kids here and make new friends. They are always out walking down the street with multiple kids hanging off of them, a beautiful thing to see! Even from the rooftop where I am sitting at this moment I can hear our kids names being shouted out by the local children as they come looking for them to play with them.

We are truly humbled and blessed to be able to witness God‘s hand in this place, and to be able to share life with our brothers and sisters in a different part of the world. Gracias a Dios.

Visiquichum Tuesday!

We had a great first full day in Visiquichum! We were formally introduced to the community at a school meeting in the morning, including the Guatemala nation anthem and a traditional dance by the school kids. This was followed by home visits to sponsored children and some work on the building project (see picture). The highlight for most of our team was playing with the children both during the morning and at Vacation Bible School in the afternoon. There is so much joy in the hearts of these kids! Off to bed, tomorrow looks like a full one!

Here we go!!

Our team team is packing up to leave today. We fly from PDX to LAX this afternoon and then on to Guatemala City overnight. Then, we are driving all day Sunday to the town of Nebaj to meet the local Food for the Hungry team. Then, on to Visiquichum Monday! We are excited to see what God is already doing in Visiquichum and for what He has for Riversgate as we start this partnership. Please pray for:

  1. safe travels including safe driving on crazy mountain roads (including no car sickness).

  2. stillness and openness and an attitude of humility as we enter into a new culture.

  3. rest for our team for the long travel days ahead.

  4. quickly forming relationships.

  5. unity within our team/grace for one another.