Saturday, January 18, 2014


Our celebration dinner was a good time of expressing gratitude to the MAMA staff and remembering to be faithful. Tim Weaver shared a story of a little girl waiting for a seed to sprout. Her grandfather reminded her that all it took was her faithfulness to water the cup of dirt each day.

Mary reviewed our totals for the week:
Parasite medicine- 677 people
Medical consults (one doctor)-  316 people
Teeth pulled= 124
Low hemoglobin= 77
Malnourished children found= 22
Reading glasses to 118
Cement floors done= 31, 253 bags cement (50 yds or 100 ton)
People in homes w new floors= 62 adults, 75 kids

As you can see- an amazing week as the staff and team worked to remain faithful to serving others!

We ended the evening with each team member taking a parasite pill (for good measure) and a gummi vitamin (or two or ten).

Off to Copan or the airport!
Love, Barb for the team

Friday, January 17, 2014

Good Last Day of Work!

Even though we started the day at 59 degrees, we had a really good last day of work!  The construction crew met their goal totaling 251 bags of cement for the week. We will get all the statistics on our week both construction and medical brigade, tonight at our celebration dinner with all the MAMA staff and volunteers. We will be sure to share them with you.

We stayed in the neighborhood today. The medical team working at the San Francisco de Yojoa municipal health clinic (with a dental clinic named after Dr Priscilla Benner). The cement floors were in houses down the road from the mission house in a community Quebradas de Aqua (ravines of water).    The construction crew reports again they had lots of community help. The first three houses done by Chris's crew were close together, so everyone watched and listened (Tim Weaver talking to Wilson in Spanish) and by the second and third houses everyone understood what was going on and pitched in, including lots of kids. The Daves and Tim Nyce felt compassion for a disabled teenager at one of their houses, and saved cement to make a handicap ramp. They were thankful for their translator Elvis who could discuss the idea of the ramp with the mom before they did it. Tim Weaver and big Dave went back to one house to check out an outdoor stove and the mom was ecstatic over her new floor.  Both crews finished early as usual, so had time to lay about 75 blocks on Eddie's house. He bought land a few years ago and has been building slowly as he has funds,  with walls going up now.  Eddie  is so proud of his house.

The medical clinic went smoothly, with our Honduran doc, Dra. Diana doing a great job.  Madison enjoyed finding cute hats for the 8mo- 18mo babies. She especially loved the giraffe hat on one cutie!!  Ruthie loved giving out clothes and seeing how happy everyone was. Barb was happy to quiet tears of a little boy w a coloring book and crayons. And we had enough monkeys for the whole week!!

Well the guys just came in from the porch-- too cold!  And everyone is gathering for our celebration dinner- 27 total. Chicken Corden Blue and other goodies--usually a cake!!

We thank a God for a great week, safety and the opportunity to help so many!  We are sending 6 team mates back to PA tomorrow. The other 7 headed for R&R in Copan.

Thanks for praying!!
Love Barb and the team.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Heartfelt Thank Yous!

Tonight we reflected on the touching heartfelt thank yous received in the community of La Sabana.  The construction crew were blessed to do cement floors in some really needy houses and the families were so appreciative. Today was a day of responding like "those on the right" in Matthew 25,  actually giving the shirts off our backs. Team members gave jackets to those they met today for the current cool weather we are experiencing (60 degrees this morning!). We also returned to two of the poorer families at the end of the day with clothes, coloring books, and some money for food.  These gifts were received with joy and thanks and expressions of "you have done too much".

The construction crew did 6 floors today (50 bags of cement).  Again they were assisted by families and other community people. They were especially impressed with one mom who carried a 5 gal bucket of water (40lb) on her head with a toddler in her arms and did not spill a drop. One homeowner wanted to save all the dirty cement water from rinsing the mud pan and tools ....water is that precious?

The community was pretty healthy including the animals. There were big pigs, horses and Karen pronounced the dogs as fairly healthy.

Ruthie and Madison are busy giving out parasite medicine, vit A, gummy vitamins, stickers, some clothing and shoes, and a monkey!!  We still have monkeys for tomorrow:-). Even teenagers ask for a "mono" (monkey).  Barb met a little guy with an awful ulcer on his back. We will follow up with him as a Children Without Choices case. A mom and 4yr old girl were invited back to the nutrition center today and were packed and ready to go at the end of the day. Can you imagine packing up and moving somewhere else for 6 weeks with a few hours notice?  This mom is willing to sacrifice for the  sake of her child.

We are all healthy and enjoying lots of laughter together after our days of hard work. Tonight's entertainment was stories of Preston, big Dave's dog and also videos of the electric wheelbarrow he built on a wheelchair base.

Thanks for your prayers. We definitely are feeling God's care in many ways!

Barb for the team.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Wednesday reflections

We woke this morning to the question - do you know what day it is?  It's hump day!  It's hard to believe Wednesday is here already. At breakfast, Don announced that last night we sorted and bagged 34,000 pills - a whole case from vitamin angels.  We traveled to casas viejas (old houses) for our clinic and construction day. We had been there last year and the community remembered us (in a good way).  It was sunny with showers sprinkled in which created muddy conditions both for driving and for working. We again had good community help with both the clinic and construction. A 14 year old boy named Marvin carried buckets of sand at all the houses we worked at.  There are a lot of duplicates on this team:  2 Dave's; 2 Tim's; and 2 Karen's. I believe this may be the first time Dave Rice has ever been called little Dave. We are getting in the habit of checking for big Dave before we leave anywhere - he may be playing soccer, or helping someone, and we almost left him once or twice. After lunch I worked at the clinic helping people with reading glasses.  Marvin came and sat by me and we talked for 15-20 minutes. He will finish school this year and then begin working in the fields. He has 3 brothers and sisters and cares deeply for them. The construction team did 6 houses and 49 bags of cement. Again today I heard several Hondurans say 'you work very fast' to the construction crew. The clinic saw around 200 people and there are some health issues. I believe 2 invitations were extended to families to come to the nutrition center.  the team arrived back at the mission house by 3:30 - so we could enjoy a porch view and some beef jerky before dinner.  We are grateful for a great staff that plans well, oversees the daily routine, and is a lot of fun to be with.  Tonight we reflected on Jesus' mission statement from Luke 4:18-19 on his desire to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captives, recovery of sight to the blind, and proclaim the year of the Lords favor. we followed Ruth's sharing about abundance last night by thinking about what we have using to see our status in this world of 7 billion people. We closed with Oscar Romero's prayer "A future not our own."
Tim Weaver for the team.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

January 14, 2014

January 14, 2014. Panacam, Santa Cruz de Yojoa
We enjoyed scrambled eggs and bacon and our team had a good start to another great weather day. We arrived at the sight after a thirty minute drive.   We unloaded our materials and set up at the school. An older man approached Dave Radeschi as soon as he arrived. He wanted Dave to pull his tooth! That would have been interesting. While Dave was speaking to a boy the cement crews were ready to leave and go to their first sights. Luckily Dave left his gloves and hat on a seat so the crew remembered to call him.
The cement crews said that the homes they worked in today were very, very needy. Karen noted that the children were very helpful and greatly appreciated the food and toys that were shared. Tim Nyce said that a young boy and mother helped by getting water for the job. They had to go down the mountain then 150 yards along the road and cross a four lane highway to a fruit stand to get the water. Every time the men took a bucket the mom and boy filled the container again. They were amazing workers. At the end of the day they gave an offering to the mission of three pineapples. Vince said this was an huge gift considering what they had.
While doing deworming Madison was stung by a stinging insect. Her neck swelled, a welt appeared and her face was very healthy looking on the side of the sting. Good thing we had a doctor and medicine. She is doing better now.  The children were beautiful!  There were two sets of twins and a baby that was less than a month old .
Time to leave and we are in the van. Dave Radeschi is once again missing. He was on the soccer field with the children. We had to tell the children he couldn't play anymore.
When we returned to the mission house Don got a shower and said he felt like a hundred limps (5 dollars).
It was another busy, productive day.
Thoughts by many, written by Ruth Hohenstein

Monday, January 13, 2014

Monday January 13, 2014

Monday was off to a great start as we traveled to Santa Fe in San Francisco.  It was a picture perfect day and the fields of corn, sugar, grazing cows, horses and beautiful hills entertained us on our hour and a half drive.  Since our team was there other years we knew to set up in the school.  We had a doctor, dentist as well as our team and the Mama team from the mission house.

Madison Trauger worked with me giving vitamin A and deworming pills.  This was her first experience on a Mama trip.  She did an excellent job and was very mature.  Her Spanish came in handy and she enjoyed the children.  We had 150 pass through our station.  The children enjoyed the lollipop and the small stuffed animal.  Pills are good for them but the animals bring the smiles!  I also enjoyed Hector, the MAMA director fit people for reading glasses.  He was patient and kind and it was a joy to see how happy the people were when they could see!

We thought we were going to see Nolvin and put a floor in his house, but his father changed his mind.  Nolvin was the child that had his club foot fixed.  Sadly we discovered Nolvin's mom had passed away.  Nolvin is now picking coffee beans.
The cement crews completed seven homes mixing 48 bags of concrete.  They had a good experience and we're pleased at the help they received carrying, and mixing.  People mentioned that the team finished the floors quickly.
We have had two very nice meals.  There are twenty of us that share a meal together.  Devotions were led by Tim.  He encouraged us to notice the things of beauty around us.  All is well and we are looking forward to Panacam a town we have not been to.
Written by team member Ruth Hohenstein

Sunday, January 12, 2014

We arrived to sunshine and 80 degrees!

We had a good trip and we are happy to be here. The beautiful weather is a bonus after our cold weather in PA last week. What a nice surprise when we gathered at DRE this morning at 2am---Ed Wyse was there to see us off and actually rode along to the airport with Mark Rush and the suitcase load. We know you are here in spirit Ed! Our flights were smooth and only one suitcase did not make it. Dave Rice always seems to be involved in suitcase problems. When we identified the missing donation bag as the one Dave checked we went to the claim desk and his name was already written on the board.  At least they were aware of the problem. The bag should be here in a day or two and just has extra clothing and toys. This has been dubbed "the year of the monkeys". We rec'd a donation of a ton of little stuffed toy monkeys. Enough for every child we encounter. After arriving at the mission house, we spent a few hours sorting donations and packing pills and feel pretty organized for our first day. We are sending some hostess gifts and toys with the cement crew this year. They will leave a little surprise package in the houses with the new floors. Guess where we are going tomorrow?  Sante Fe, Nolvin's community!  Nolvin is our Children Without Choices poster child,  the little boy who needed club foot repair. Looking forward to seeing him. Pray for safety and good health. Also for shorty Dave (Rice) and tall Dave (Radeschi) not to hit their heads on the low door ways!
Looking forward to a great week!  Barb for the team.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

We are headed out in a few hours...DRE team #26! Arriving in Honduras about 1pm Eastern time Sunday afternoon. Looking forward to a great week. Plans to do lots of cement floors. Pray for strength for the construction crew and good health for all. Joe, Ruth and Karen Hohenstein, Jake, Barb, Don and Dave Rice, Chris and Madison Trauger, Dave Radeschi, Tim Nyce, Tim Weaver, Vince Fleck