Posted by: Honduras Mission Team | January 30, 2014

Day 5 – Wednesday

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Buenos dias! This morning began with a team reflection centered on a section of Pope Francis’ encyclical (Evangelii Guadium – “The Joy of the Gospel”), which is entitled, ‘The Special Place of the Poor in God’s People.’ Pope Francis notes that God’s heart has a special place for the poor, so much so that “he himself ‘became poor’” (see 2 Cor 8:9). Jesus himself was born into poverty and remained materially poor throughout his earthly life. And, because we as Christians are called to put on “the mind of Christ,” to be fully Christian we must be one with the poor. “This is why I want a Church which is poor and for the poor,” Pope Francis writes, “They have much to teach us.”  Oh how our eyes have been opened throughout our trip to the many ways the poor can and do teach us! They teach us how to give even when we lack the means; and how to welcome others, laugh and enjoy life even among the difficulties we face, just to name a few.

After a nice breakfast with the Sors in the elderly home (complete with fresh Honduran coffee), some of us visited the main office and warehouse of the Central American Medical Organization (CAMO). The office/warehouse is located right across the street from the girls’ home. CAMO is an amazing organization, based in Ohio, doing tremendous good for the people of Honduras by providing cost-free medical supplies and equipment to medical offices and hospitals. The CAMO office also provides dental services in-house, and thanks to God’s providence on a prior trip, the SMA Honduran ministry has been able to arrange for annual dental check ups, cleanings, and fillings for the girls in the home. This week while we’ve been here the girls have been getting their check ups – no matter where you live there always some nervousness in going to the dentist!

Back at the elderly home, some of the team assisted the residents with some more painting activities and with making Valentines cards. From there we brought in some pizzas for lunch for the residents, for the jovenes (the teenage girls who help around the home), and for the Sors. Everyone loves pizza! And we’ve probably made for a record week of sales for the local pizza place.

After lunch we went down to the girls’ home, where some of the team continued to work on our library refurbishing project, while the rest of the team began helping prepare for the quinceañera celebration. (For those unfamiliar, quinceañera is a special celebration in Latin American cultures for girls turning 15). This year three of the girls in the home were celebrating their quinceañera – Nelsi, Melissa and Virginia. Magda, Karla and Jodie helped the girls with their hair and dresses, and we then all went to the chapel for mass in special honor of the quinceañeras.  Mass in the orphanage is especially beautiful – several of the girls are gifted on guitar and lead the angelic voices of all of the girls. Heaven on earth! After mass we had homemade punch and cake (with not-your-ordinary birthday candles, but instead some sparklers on top like we’d see on 4th of July), along with plenty of laughter.

After dinner the team spent time with Joe Self and included him in our nightly reflection. Given Joe’s first-hand knowledge of the needs of the girls and the elderly we serve, we wanted to hear from him as to how he feels things are going with the SMA mission, and any adjustments he believes would be helpful. The team will share Joe’s insights when we return to our regular committee meetings, but suffice it to say Joe expressed his appreciation and gratitude for the SMA ministry – not only monetarily but also in our commitment to travel here and be present to the girls and elderly twice each year.

Adios – God bless you all.

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