Monday, May 28, 2012

Resting, with mixed emotions . . . .

Back from a weekend in Copan, where some of us toured the ruins, others took the Canopy Tour, and others just walked and shopped, hanging around together. . . . drinking lucuados, buying souvenirs and gifts for friends back home.

This afternoon we went back to Gracias a Dios and visited with Pastor Juan and his family and other church members.  Pastor Juan's custom is to read a letter to us in which he expresses his appreciation for our team and the work that was accomplished, and praises God for the many blessings that he has given all of us. I hope to get a copy of the letter for all to read.  We also walked back up the hill to the house that we helped to build for the Turcios family, and presented them with a gift - a wooden plaque with praying hands with the words, " God bless this house."    Again, it was a very special time for the team, as well as for the family and Pastor Juan.  Saying our good-byes to all of our friends was the hardest thing to do.

Tonight we had our last supper at "Power Chicken", where we had our fill of Honduran foods.  We had a great time together along with Gustavo, Aurora, Dinora and Danilo and their two boys, Danny and Derek. 

On Monday, we'll be leaving for the airport at 8:30 AM, and finally arriving at Newark around 9:30 PM.

We continue to thank God for the gifts he has given us, the relationships that we are building, and all the blessings that each of us has received.  Praying for a safe journey home, and lots of rest!

DRE MAMA team,  Bob

Friday, May 25, 2012

Last Day of Trabajo

It is with mixed feelings we write tonight.  The saddest on our hearts is the death of Erlinda deRobela's husband, Miguel today.  He had a heart attack overnight and things looked positive this morning after surgery, but took a turn this afternoon.  (Erlinda has been the director of Proyecto MAMA here in San Pedro Sula for more than 20 years and spent some time with us this week, even going to the community with us yesterday for the day.)  We learned funerals happen fast here...we heard the news of Miguel's passing about 5pm tonight and were told his body would be at the church by 8:30pm tonight for persons to call.  I can not imagine how Erlinda and her family feel...everything in less than 24 hours.  Please pray for them.

We also write with joy for a good week of work and fun as a team, safety and no serious health concerns.  The construction team (we can not say "the men", because Sarah joined them this afternoon!), with feet like mountain goats and strong bodies, mixed, carried and poured the cement for the floor of the 13' x 13' home in Gracias a Dios today.  The rest of us walked up to see their work this afternoon and got to meet the sweet family of 4 who will live there.  (They currently share a 10'x10' home with another family!).

The medical clinic worked in Gracias a Dios today too, setting up in Pastor Juan's church, but our patients were from across the river, the Pena Blanca community.  We gave medicine to about 250 people, sadly running out of vitamins by afternoon.  One of the toughest cases to see, was a mother and 8 children who live on the street.  All the kids had respitory problems, the sickest little boy with pneumonia.  Pastor Juan told us the church is working to help the family, but there are many issues.

We enjoyed seeing all our friends in Gracias a Dios today and especially loved the opportunity to see the new property the church has purchased.  They hope to start to build their new church soon.  They praise God for the land, knowing it is only by His hand that the purchase was possible.

Another good news item today, Pastor Juan was granted a visa to come to the US again!  We hope to see him in PA in August.

Tomorrow we head to Copan for an overnight time of R&R.  Please pray for our safety on the crazy 3 hour drive.  We miss all of you and look forward to being home to our families late Monday evening.

We give God the praise for the wonderful week and experiences and thank you for supporting us with gifts of medicine, etc. but especially for your prayers.

Adios for now,
Barb for the team

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Thursday Santiago & Gracias a Dios

It is our 4th day working. The medical team went to Santiago which was aprox. 40 minutes away and off the main highway. The roads are dirt and rock with huge potholes. The homes can be made of block or just a bunch of wood and/or pieces of tin fitted together to make a shack. It is amazing on one side of the street there could be a nicer block home and across the street is a makeshift shack.
     In Santiago we set up our clinic in the local church. The woman pastor said a prayer before we started. We gave out medication to 150 people before lunch and finished the day with a count of 193. There were many children with sore throats. One little boy needed his throat looked at and when his mom told him to come over he ran away and right out of the building. He was having none of that. :D
I have done alot of teaching on dehydration. It is very hot here and people work very hard all day long. It is a basic need that people easily forget.
     After lunch some of our team painted the little girls fingernails and colored pictues with them on the floor.
    The construction crew went to Gracias a Dios which is Pastor Juans community. They put windows & a door on a house and framed out the roof for a man & his family. They said the house is built into the side of a hill. It is quite steep to walk up to it.
    This is my first time to Honduras and doing a medical trip. I would like to stay and continue to help. The people are so appreciative. I know I will come back next year but if I could I would come back sooner. Dinora said there is such a huge need for medical clinics. She would be ready to have a team come every 2 months. And you don't need to have medical experience to participate.
   What a blessing this whole experience has been. It has touched my heart and I know I will never be the same. I thank Jesus for allowing me to be used by Him.
Laura Heacock

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Midweek Report

The day dawned bright and clear with white, fluffy clouds in the sky. Later in the day, the sun beat hot on all those who got in its way.
The guys were off to the school for their last day on the wall. They accomplished all the work they planned on plus made lots of friends with the children. Matt and Matt were especially popular with the little girls. The guys were a little red and a lot tired from all their hard work today.
The medical team went to La Meeler today, which was near the first community we went to on Monday, about an hour's drive away. We set up like usual and  started to see the villagers right away. There was a boy, 11 year's old, who we saw- he wanted reading glasses but he didn't read or write because he wasn't attending school, he had to work with his father. He brought his little brother along who had a bad case of scabies.
Other complaints that  were common were ear aches, urinary tract infections,babies with respiratory infections who required nebulizer treatments,dizziness, headaches  and insomnia. We saw about six cases of people with high blood pressure, > 200/100 high.
It's all so very hard to know what to do for them. We have a limited amount of medicine to give them, will they take it, will they follow up with a doctor and be able to get more medicine, what will be their outcome? We commit our work to God and trust in Him for the outcome.
On a happier note, one of the sick babies we saw on Monday was able to come to the community we were at today and received two more nebulizer treatments and seemed to be feeling better. When mother and baby left we let her know that we had been praying for them. She broke into a big smile and said "gracias."
And that is what we say to you, our family and friends at home who have been thinking of us and lifting up us to the Lord in prayer.
Almost forgot, we saw Jorge Reyes, an eleven year old boy with muscular dystrophy,confined to a wheelchair. A previous MAMA team had helped finish building their house last March. We had a nice visit with Jorge and his mother, Aracely. They were very thankful for all the help that had been provided for them. Also, our two physical therapists, Jen and Natalie, were able to do exercises with Jorge's arms and legs.
Gracias again for your thoughts and prayers.
Finishing the week strong,
Beverly Unruh for the team.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

DiĆ” Dos (Day 2)

And so the second day began with a morning breakfast at 6:30 am after a restful night for a new day of service. Proceeding breakfast, we waited for our rides - Gustavo for the men as well as Dinora and Aurora for the women. Aurora and Dinora took the women to a nearby community, La Buena Inversion, not as remote as El Cayo was. It was raining the night before as well as in the morning a bit before we left, so we had to drive off the main road onto muddy, puddle-filled roads. Thank goodness it was not too long of a bumpy ride, as we made it to our destination shortly, at a school for the children. The children greeted us as we unloaded from the van. The way the school was set up was perfect, as it had 3 rooms divided in one large room. The first room was de-worming and vitamin A as well as the first consultation; the second room was where the nurses did their evaluation; and the third room was the pharmacy. It didn't seem as busy as yesterday, but we actually ended up giving out prescribed medicines, vitamins, and de-worming pills for about 190 people. A few highlights of the day was being able to give out reading glasses to an eldery woman who was graciciously happy, as she was able to see better, so that she could read her bible. A little boy was also happy to be able to see better with his new glasses. We were also able to give out toys, crayons, notebooks, baseball caps, and stickers for the children. Another highlight was that we met an old friend of DRE MAMA, Milton. Barb and Bob told us Milton's story of his severe burns and how persons from DRE helped him to come to the US for surgery. He was a smiling, happy boy today and his mother and grandmother were joyful too. Also an update on another friend from a past team - Nolvin with the club foot had his surgery today. After we left the school, Barb got to go to the CURE hospital with Dinora near our hotel. Although visiting hours were over and they could not see Nolvin, they got to visit with his father who was most appreciative for the help for his son. Meanwhile, the men started their second day at the school outside of San Pedro Sula. Today they finished the remainder of the rebar and pouring the concrete. Yes, they did have to haul it up a large hill. In fact, there were women in the community who were so pleased to be helping. There was a young lady who effortlessly carried up a bucket filled with concrete up the hills. Phew! I am exhausted thinking about it. Thank the Lord the guys (and the women from the community that helped) had their strength and energy to do their job today. By day's end, they were exhausted. We all were hoping to be able to go swimming when we returned, but it was raining, so we had some free time to catch our breath and do some preparation for tomorrow. We had a delicioso dinner that Aurora made us - a chicken and rice soup with veggies along with warm tortillas. Following dinner, we had a nice group meeting, reflecting on our day as well as having our daily devotional prayer time. 
It was indeed a blessed day serving the community with God's gracious love. Thank you all for your prayers!!!!! Beunos noches! For our team, Natalie Bedio

Monday, May 21, 2012

Day 1 - Getting to Know Honduras

This day, as well as the two days preceeding it, has been full of the glory of God. God's power and provision was shown in mighty ways. Firstly, we were all awake and in good spirits for a 6:15am breakfast call. No small feat for a group who has had two very full days under their belts. God is good. Secondly, we arrived at our destinations safely. God is good. Thirdly, and most importantly, we were privileged to take part in how God is moving in Honduras - through caring physically for His children and providing for them when they cannot for themselves. God is good. Today was our first day of service. The six women in our group along with four dentists, one medical student, Dinora, and Aurora traveled roughly an hour outside of the city to a village called El Cayo. We were pleased to find a congenial community waiting for us with open hands and hearts. Although the town is far from stable economically, the people are not lacking in joy. We set up a medical clinic complete with a parasite preventative station, a nurses station, a pharmacy, and even a make-shift dentists office. During the span of 7 hours, 171 patients were seen and prescribed medication in addition to receiving deworming pills and vitamins. The dentists estimated a probable total of 60 teeth extractions as well. God is good. While the humidity and heat kept us looking damp and less than fresh, I felt oppositely in my spirit especially as the day wore on. I felt a progressive renewal with every pill I administered and every smile I reciprocated. It is a blessing to serve selflessly as unto the Lord. I believe those with me today in El Cayo would mirror my sentiment. God is good. While the women were treating the sick in El Cayo, the men in our group ventured to a school outside of San Pedro Sula to work on the completion of a wall that surrounds the property. The purpose of the wall is twofold: to lower the amount of students who leave during the day, and to keep unwanted visitors out. Their task is to finish the fourth side of the wall as the other three are already done. Together with Pastor Juan, the men in our group (Bob, Matt, Matt, and Phil) worked on creating forms for the concrete and tying rebar for the structure. They worked with 5 or 6 Honduran men and accomplished a good portion of the work today. Tomorrow they will finish with the remainder of the rebar and pouring the concrete (apparently it must be hauled up a large hill after it is mixed - I am sure they will be plenty exhausted by days end). I am thankful for a day well spent. A day I can look back on with no regrets, in which no time was wasted because it was spent caring for and loving and learning from God's children in Honduras. Thank you for your prayers! For all of us in San Pedro Sula, gracias. Sarah Detweiler

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Dia de Dios

Hello All, After getting a lot of much needed rest last night, we all woke up rejuvanated for the day. We began the day eating a leaisurely breakfast at the hotel. Dinora, Aurora and Gustavo then arrived to pick us up, Aurora and Gustavo a bit tired after being up till 6 in the morning after an all night special church service to pray for peace in Honduras. We then went to the market in San Pedro Sula, where everyone had a chance to do a little shopping. We also went into the back of the market where there were row of women making tortillas. From the market, we went to the plaza in the middle of San Pedro Sula and visited the main cathedral of the city. We dined at a resturant in a nearby hotel and then headed to an orphanage. The orphanage Hogar de Emanuel was a Christian orphanage, home to 84 children from infant to teenager. The children at the orphanage are there due to family not being able to take care of them or due to other family issues. The environment at the orphanage was impressive to see. The walls were brightly colored with fun paintings on the walls associated with the type of activities that took place in that room. We saw the dorms for the children and the house that held the infants. There we were able to hold some of the children; however, most of them were sleeping. As part of the orphanage, they have chicken and a garden where they grow trees. It is the responsibility of the children to care for the chickens and the garden. Also at the orphanage, they run a program called "Caminado para amor" (Walkig for Love), where they get donations of shoes, the childring help separate them and then they hand them out to children in the public schools all over the country including Tegulcigapa, San Pedro Sula, and Santa Maria. They have a pre-school and kindergarden classroom on the campus of the orphanage but the older children go to school at the public schools. After we were done touring the orphanage, we handed out beanie babies and candy to the children as well as blew bubbles for them. The "Dot" candies were a favorite among the children! After the orphanage we came back to the hotel to freshen up before heading out to the Gracias a Dios community for a service at Igelesia de Principe de Paz. Pastor Juan and the congregation were excited to see us. Bob and Barb presented Pastor Juan with a banner of peace to hang in their new church building. Also during the church services, the three mothers on the trip, Barb, Bev, and Laura were honored by the congregation as a late Mother's Day celebration. After the wonderful services of music, prayer and a message from Pastor Juan, we were provided with a delicious meal of homemade tortillas with cheese and homemade salsa prepared by Maria and several other women at the church. During the meal, we were able to reconnect and visit with the church members and children. Before we knew it, Gustavo was at the door yelling "Vamanos" to take us back to our hotel. Everyone enjoyed the day and is looking forward to begin the medical clinics and construction tomorrow. Thank you for all your prayers and continue to pray that God will work through us at we plant the seed of his love in the Honduran communities. For all, Jen Gehman Detweiler

Saturday, May 19, 2012


After many months of planning and preparation the team arrived at San Pedro Sula to bright, sunny skies and HOT, HOT tempatures. We felt the Lord's Hand of protection upon as we had two very smooth landings in the airplanes. Dinoro met us at the airport and we soon we on our way to the Hotel Nuria. After a bit of rejuvinating ourselves we unpacked the bags and prepared for the clinics on Monday. Some of us went swimming while others collapsed on their beds until supper. We have a full day ahead of us tomorrow so signing off for now. Buenos noches. Beverly Unruh for the team.

San Pedro Sula - May 19, 2012

The day went well - starting at 2:15 in the morning at DRE. However, tonight, the lack of sleep is catching up with us, and we're all ready for bed.  The flights were good, and our friends in Honduras arrived at the airport at the same time we were leaving the customs area.  Gustavo had to change a flat tire on the way, so they were later than they wanted to be, and he was wet from the heat and humidity.  But, Gustavo, Aurora, and Dinora and Derek were there to load up our luggage, which all arrived this time, and take us back to the hotel. After eating some really good fresh fruit, and then a couple of pizzas, we managed to tackle the 15 bags of meds that we brought with us, as well as about 5 others that were left from the March team to SPS.
Before supper, which Aurora would be bringing us, a few of us jumped into the pool for a few minutes, just to cool down and relax a little.  The weather is very hot and humid, but there are showers rolling through, and the forecast calls for this all next week.  After a delicious dinner of chicken and rice, with a salad, we all decided that it was time for rest, even thought it was only about 7:30  - local time, which is two hours behind our time at DRE.

So, we arrived safely and are ready for a spirit-filled week with our friends here in SPS. On Sunday, our plans are to visit the local market in the morning, visit an orphanage in the afternoon, and attend Pastor Juan's church at 5:00, with a meal provided by the church at some point, as well as visiting with our special friends in the community of Gracias a Dios.

For the team,

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Team #23- Partnering with Deep Run West May 19-28, 2012 Ten days until our next team departs for San Pedro Sula. We have a good group for some construction projects and medical clinics. Team members are Bob Moyer, Barb Rice, Matt Nyce, Sarah Detweiler, Bev Unruh, Phil Heacock, Laura Heacock, Matt Heacock, Jen Detweiler and Natalie Bedio. Thanks in advance for your prayers!