Saturday, January 30, 2016

Sad and Diffiult Time

This week, there was a death of a young baby.  It was one of those situations that is very difficult and with a powerful story. 

Sometimes, we just do not understand circumstances. That is the bottom line.  We just do not.  Even for Christians who have a lot of faith in God, there are struggles.

Kemmel and I attended this funeral on Thursday.  The family members are Christians here in Chichi.  They had been so excited about this new addition to the family and now are in shock with the tragic event.  Before we left for the walk to the cemetery, Kemmel was asked to lead the final prayer. He did a wonderful job, even though it was hard.  He focused on God's love and asked for comfort and peace for the family.

Yesterday, I went back to the site and placed more water on the flowers.

A day that will not be forgotten.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Clinic in Mactzul!!

We had a good number of patients today in Mactzul II. Mike, Julie, Maury, Aura, Micaela and I headed out together. 

It was interesting to see how the building is coming along.  They have made a lot of progress on it.

On the way home, I ran into a herd of cattle. I am not sure who had the right-of-way but I was glad to give it to them.

Tomorrow, Kemmel and I will attend a funeral and ceremony at the burial.  It will not be an easy day but something that we need to attend.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Clinic in Lemoa and Donated Diapers

Today, we had clinic in Lemoa and we had good patient load.

We had been gifted some special diapers and have been watching for some babies that could use them.

This little girl picked one special for her younger baby brother.

This young baby needs to have his lip and palate repaired but he is short a few pounds.  I think that he will be ready to go in August.  His mom selected a black diaper.

This young boy could not wait to try on his new green diaper!

It was a good day of clinic.  We had some patients arrive late but we saw everyone.

Tomorrow we will be in Mactzul II, to see what we can see!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Ladies Class in Pacaja Xesic

This morning, I headed out to Pacaja Xesic to do a ladies Pap/ IVAA class.  I have really been looking forward to it because the leaders of the congregation there have been very involved. When I approached Pacaja, I picked up some ladies walking to class. When we arrived where I thought the class was going to be, they told me that they had changed the location to accommodate more ladies from the community. There is a small community building near the cemetery and it worked well.

We had about 40 ladies in attendance. 

Aura, our dentist, started the class. Becky, her sister translated for me.

They had mentioned having a question and answer time at the end of the class.  I like to do questions as we continue with the class. Many times, people forget their questions or begin to tire of sitting during the class and hesitate to ask questions.

They were really active and there was a lot of participation.  Becky seemed surprised that the 90 minutes went so quickly.  By the end of the class we had 16-17 ladies signed-up.  Now we just have to find a day to have the clinic.  One step-at-a time!!

Many thanks to Aura and Becky for the help today.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Time is Flying!!

The last two weeks have just soared by.

Last week we had the ladies Bible Class in Mactzul VI.  We almost set the church building on fire-------a little exaggerated--------but I do not want to give away the story in case I get to do the class again.

We also had our second Chuguexa clinic this month with 14 patients.  It went well and now we are planning on doing a Pap/ IVAA class for them.

Went down to Montellano last weekend.  Rick was there with a large surgical group and there were some that I had not seen in a long time so it was nice to visit with them.

We are having a cold spell.  It is dry because we have not had any rain but it is quite chilly.  Even Stormy can not go out without her coat on.

This Saturday, we will have a Pap/ IVAA class in Pacaja Xesic.  I think we will have a good turn out for that class.

I will keep you posted.!

Monday, January 11, 2016

Opening Ceremony in Paxot II

We all left early this morning for Paxot II to attend the opening ceremony.  They have been planning this day for a long time and it is finally here.  So much preparation went into it!  When we first arrived, there were not a lot of people there yet.

This is the entrance that later was used for the ribbon cutting ceremony.  It was the last view that I would have of it.

The ladies were inside the kitchen were working as hard as they could.  They had over 1,000 guests to feed.  The ladies here are making breakfast and this is a basket of tamalitos.

This side was making lunch. There is more work than people realize for a day like today.

After most people had finished breakfast, the group starting gathering outside.  Several people were making videos and it was also on the radio.

When we moved over to where the ribbon was in front of the door,  Lisa and I were in the back.  We could not even see the door.  They cut the ribbon and presented a section of it to the elders of different communities.  This is the best use of a selfie-stick that I have seen.

There were people across the road that could not even get near the entrance.

Finally, they let us enter but continued to remind people to go slowly to prevent a stampede.
This congregation has two levels and it was eventually opened and filled.

This is the front of the church building and this painting was sent from the states on ten separate panels and then hung.

The young people carried in the banners and they sung the Guatemalan anthem.

One flag that will remain, is the flag of the United States and we sang the anthem.

This is Pat Hile and he painted the back-drop and had it brought down from the states.

Kemmel was thanked for his service with Health Talents and for also supporting the work in Paxot II.  He was presented with the vest that he is wearing.

Lisa was also thanked and presented a gift for her work in Paxot II.

We had a worship service and then a guest speaker from Mexico.

We enjoyed a lunch together and then another worship service.  It was a very special day that will be remembered for a long time.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Busting clinic!

We had a very busy day in Lemoa.  When we started, the promoters told me that 30 patients had arrived. I got off to a slow start but a good start.

My first group of patients was a middle-aged man and his parents.  His parents were not able to speak very much Spanish so he translated for them.

Through questioning, I found out that his dad was a heavy drinker for most of his life.  His stomach has bothered him for several years so he drinks to take the pain away.  We talked about that for quite a while.

When we were close to finishing, I wanted Gaspar come in and meet them. I introduced them to Gaspar and explained his role in the clinic. I explained what I had talked to the family about.  That sometimes when a person starts drinking, they have it under control and it is not a concern. Then the more they drink, the more problems that they have physically, emotionally and spiritually.

It is the same as a person who is out in the middle of a lake and can't swim. The first minute or two, they can tread water and remain calm.  But the more that they drink, the more difficult it becomes to stay above the water.  Eventually, the person is struggling to breath with their mouth.  Then the real panic begins when they lose control, unable to breath through their nose and begin to sink.

When we finished talking they went outside to spend some time with Gaspar. The conversation continued to go well and then they invited Gaspar to visit them in their home on Tuesday to talk some more.  It is situations like this that make this ministry so very rewarding.

We had 28 patients today and 18 of them were new!! The  word is spreading, the clinic is growing and people are being receptive...................what can be more exciting than this???

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

What a clinic!

Today, we started our clinic in Chuguexa every 15 days.  Before, we were here only once a month.  We had a great turn out and think that we will even see more growth.

We had 25patients today and the majority off them remain diabetics.I am not sure what the reason is but the diabetic just are not catching on very well. Yes it is normal to have a few patients who are not very compliment.........but this seems to be the norm here. It is very sad for me to admit.

With going to twice a month,I hope to have more time with each patient. I also want to carry my photos that I have used in diabetic classes before.  Maybe something like this will help.

I will keep you posted.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

More Babies for surgery!

As mentioned a few days ago, I want to introduce you to the babies who will go to Montellano for surgery in February.  We will head down on February the 13th and will be there for about a week.  A large group will be led by Rick and it will include physicians, nurses and caregivers.

This is Amarilis and her surgery will be sponsored by Kory.  When we first met Amarilis, she had a loud heart murmur and needed heart surgery before we could do her lip and palate repair.  She had her heart surgery in Guatemala City and all went well.  Now, we will close a small hole that remains in her palate.

This is Brandon and his surgery is being sponsored by Jeanie.  He had his lip repaired last year and now it is time for his palate repair.

This is Eliezer, who also had his lip repaired last year.  Danny will sponsor the surgery for Eliezer.

This little girl, Estefany, won the heart of the staff last year. Her mother always dressed her in pink and she always had a smile.  Her surgery will be sponsored again by Donna.

Juan is not excited about going to Montellano.  He did not have a lot of fun last year but I hope that this year will be better for him.  Danny will sponsor his palate repair.

This is Kenia and her mom.  Kenia will have her palate repaired and Kory will sponsor her surgery.

This is Milton and he is only 3 months old.  He will have to wait until August but I think he will do great then.  He has a twin brother that is very healthy and doing well.

This is Sheila and she also is 3 months old.  She too will have to wait until August to have her surgery.

 The final baby is Randy and he will have his palate repaired. Danny will sponsor his surgery again.

Please pray for the team as it travels to Guatemala and that all of the surgeries go well, without complication.

A special thanks to everyone who is sponsoring a surgery.  This opportunity is a great blessing to the child and also to the family.

Matthew 25:40------Then the king will reply to them, 'I assure you that when you have done it for one of the least of these brothers or sisters of mine, you have done it for me.'

Monday, January 4, 2016

Wonderful Visit Over Christmas

Being home for a few weeks was great!  It was good to see some friends, visit in Winston and just chill a little.

Yes, my parents are a little silly at times but it has kept them young!!  I think that I did a good job of raising them :)

We had an addition to the family this year........and she is sweet!  Mackenzie can be anywhere in the house and when dad starts playing music on the computer, she puts her crawl into high-gear and then pulls herself up on his lap! He sings along and she slaps her hand to the music. It is quite a talent show!

She is a little ham and and practices her wave.

"Mae Mae, can I eat this?"  "I do not think is a candle, honey."

Mom teaching Mackenzie how to say, "Mae Mae."  And she trys!

Not quite ready yet to wear glasses but she tries.

This is my brother, Mike.  I am converting him to Amazon..........he made a purchase for his rifle.  Amazon is wonderful!  I need to buy stock in it

It was a good Christmas, all it lacked was some snow :(

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Up and Running Again!!

OK, the holidays came and went!  Some days were better than others but we all survived!

My flight home was delayed 3.5 hours, when I left Guatemala.  Needless to say, I missed my connecting flight in Houston.  The airline was nice enough to put me in a hotel for the night but all of my luggage was sent on. Therefore, I have a new Houston shirt to wear :)

My parents had to make two trips to Charlotte but I know they say that it is OK :)

This is my family on Christmas Eve.  From left to right is Mike, my brother.  He is a fireman and works for the NC Fire Service.  Angie is his wife and she works in real estate. Paige, is their daughter and has a new baby of 11 months. Then there is my mom, Ginny who is holding Mackenzie........and then my dad, Jack.  I am very thankful for my family and it was good to share time with them.

This year, we did things a little different and it worked well.  Usually, South Fork Church of Christ has a dinner and I share stories and photos of the work here in Guatemala.  This year, they asked if I would do it on a Sunday morning, after worship.  It went well and we counted a little over 85 people.  We had a few people from Charlotte and Lenoir and it was good to see them. It was also good to see Rachael and Vanessa from the hospital.  I had not seen them in almost 10 years :)

South Fork continues to look for a minister so please remember them in your prayers.

The rest of the time was spent relaxing.  I spent three days in Winston with Sally and we visited her mom.  Mom and I did a little shopping but not a lot.

I spent one Sunday in Morganton, worshiping with the Morganton Church of Christ.  It was good to see them and share the year of activities. 

My flight returned to Guatemala on January 1st.  Since it was a 0600 flight, we spent the night in Charlotte................and it was a good thing.  That last night, my parents were attacked with the flu.......and I mean, ATTACKED!  Both were totally down.  We did not sleep the whole night and I had to take a shuttle to the airport.

When I arrived in Antigua, I spent the two days in my room.  I am so thankful that I was not as sick as they were but it was difficult getting back to Guatemala.

So many things occurred over the three weeks but it is time to get back to work.

Tomorrow, Sara and I will be in Lemoa in the clinic  It will be good to see everyone again.  I am so lucky that I have two worlds in my life and they provide me with much happiness.