Sunday, May 24, 2015

Los Pinos

I love my church in Santa Ana.  I love going to church with the Casa kids and watching them grow spiritually.  But, I have a very special place in my heart for the church in Los Pinos.  It has been more than two years since I have been to Los Pinos for church. 

Matt and Nicole go to Los Pinos about once a month.  I thought I would go last Sunday with them, but there was a city wide service and everyone at Los Pinos was going to that.  So, last week we decided to go to Los Pinos today. 

I love that church and I was so happy to be there.  I hugged several people and walked in and sat down.  I felt the tears pooling in my eyes.  I did not expect or plan that.  Thankfully, I got that under control before I had a full blown melt down. 

The singing was great.  The preaching was great.  The fellowship was better than that. 

I was wearing a big smile.  When I saw Linda, I felt those tears again.  She is so grown up and so beautiful 

I am thankful that I could get away and go to church in Los Pinos this morning.  And, I hope I do not wait two years to go again.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Mother's Day Programs

Mother's Day or el dìa de la Mamà is a very important holiday in Honduras.  One of the most important.  All of the schools and churches do something for Mother's Day.

I was very fortunate to be able to go to the program at Haley's school.

This one was the Wednesday before Mother's Day.

The one at Juan Lindo was the Saturday before Mother's Day.  Luci went to that one.

In our church in Santa Ana, all of the kids were in the program that was on Mother's Day.  Haley said a little poem in Spanish.  Haley is pretty shy about being in front of people.  I was so proud of her.

Then there were songs and skits and games and all sorts of things to honor the mothers.

And for people that send butter to school for their child's lunch, they get to be the mother of all mothers.
She really got this honor because the word "Mama" was written on her red heart.

 There were also Mother's Day programs at Los Pinos and Lomas Diamante.

Thursday after Mother's Day was the program at the high school.  Luci went to that one.  Friday, everyone got to go to one.  Mirian went with Yair to the kinder.  Elena went with Rosy, I went with Reina and Luci went with all the other kids at the elementary school.   

The one at Reina's school was very sweet and simple.  Reina and a boy were supposed to lead a song that honored mothers.  Reina was a bit nervous standing in front of everyone, but the boy was so scared he almost passed out.  They had to stand where he could not see the crowd.  I snapped one shot before they moved.

I felt honored and loved.  I was also glad when all those programs were over and I could rest.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Saturday Night

It has been one of those weeks.  A Grammy-Emma date. Five trips to town.  Nine appointments.  Haley's mother's day program.  Receipts. Reports.  Therapies. Good new.  Bad news.  A couple of hours with a friend.  There should have been another mother's day program today, but there was a terrible tragedy in Santa Ana and it was canceled.  I am not glad for the tragedy, but I was glad for a slower day today. 

The night meds are done.  I hope there are no crises up at Casa tonight. 

I have done some laundry.  Picked up a few things.  

I fixed myself some spaghetti.  I am going to have a Dr Pepper and listen to Michael W. Smith.  I am excited about church and lunch with Matt and Nicole and the girls tomorrow. 

There are mountains of paperwork staring at me.  Every where I go.  I think I am going to ignore their stares and relax tonight.  It has been one of those weeks.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Today Is Dump Day

Today is the day we call dump day.  It keeps our dump ministry going. 
Please visit Trey's blog today at
Two easy ways to donate:
Mail a check to:
Honduras Hope
P.O. Box 9222
Columbus, MS 39705
or online at

Thank you for giving of yourself today.


Monday, May 4, 2015

Dump Day 2015

The first time I ever saw the dump was February 19, 2008.  That is Nicole's birthday and I had planned to write a blog honoring my daughter.  She is worthy to be honored, but after what I saw that day, I had to write about what I saw.  This is what I had to say.

We drove out to the dump. The dump is a horrible place. The odor is awful. At least two hundred people live, yes live, at the dump. When the garbage trucks come in, these people rummage through this filthy, stinking, sometimes rotten garbage trying to find anything to eat. Rotten apples, banana peels, anything. They pull out plastic bottles or anything else they can find to recycle. Hundreds and hundreds of buzzards live there also scavenging for the same food these people are. Most of the people there had on clothes that were tattered and worn. That is not an adequate description at all. Iam positive this would be the only clothes they own. The shelters these people live in are also just what they can find and put together. They would offer essentially no protection from the wind and the cold. How they sleep at all, I do not know. There were little children there. Little children that should have been in school.

The dump is without a doubt the worst of the worst. It just doesn't get any worse than what I saw today. We are definitely working on a way to get those people fed once in a while.

This has been an emotionally draining day, in some ways harder than building houses. I will not forget what I saw today for a long time. I hope I don't ever forget. I need to be reminded of those that need to be served.

I guess it would have been easy to drive away and not do anything but talk about how bad it was.  But the things I saw that day haunted me.

A couple of weeks later, Matt and Nicole arrived in Honduras to spend their spring break.  They had one hundred dollars that a friend had given them to do with whatever they saw fit.  After reading my blog, Nicole's heart was breaking and they both knew exactly what they wanted to do with that $100.00.  Buy food and feed at the dump.  The thoughts from that first dump feed.

Those images of the people at the dump, fighting the vultures for food, have not left me since I first went to the dump a couple of weeks ago. It is really our job to take action on needs we see. More action than just praying the God blesses these people or hoping that someone else takes them food.

A man that is a janitor at Harding, and is a friend of Matt's and Nicole's, gave them a hundred dollars to help someone in need while they were in Honduras. They chose to buy food for the dump people. As gross as this sounds, refried bean sandwiches are loved by many Hondurans. Yesterday we bought enough beans and bread to make 250 sandwiches. This morning the four of us made the sandwiches. We had a good system and it did not take too long. We started down the hill and stopped to buy four stalks of bananas to go with the sandwiches.

As we headed toward the dump, I was quite nervous and a bit scared. I was afraid when we showed up with food we might get mobbed. I have heard the dump is dangerous. I silently prayed about my fears. We took off our rings and watches and, along with our cell phones and wallets, locked them in the glove box before we got to the dump.

We drove up and got out of the truck and locked it. We had decided to hand out the food out of the bed of the truck. At first, no one paid us much attention. When they realized we had food, they began to quickly make their way to us. There was really nothing of which to be afraid. They were asked them to form one line and they did. One of the dump men helped keep them in that line and, at times, handed out some of the bananas.

I went to dump a few weeks back, but did not get out of the car. I thought I was prepared to go hand out food. I made a point of looking into the eyes of every person to whom I handed a sandwich and a banana. There were no smiles, no joy in their eyes. They were grateful. Oh yes, they were grateful. Each person said gracias. Some got their food and walked to the back of the line to get another one. We did not care.

These people were filthy and smelly. Some of their hands had so much black filth on them that I cannot imagine them ever being clean again, no matter how much scrubbing was done. There were small boys, about 8 - 11 years old. There alone, with no family. There was one little girl with her mommy. I think she was about our sweet Camille's age. Some of the ladies wanted to hug me and I did hug them.

I saw a few of the dump people making sure that everyone received both a sandwich and a banana. How Christlike is that?

Not knowing if the dump was safe or not, I chose to leave my camera behind. I did not want to have my camera stolen. But an even greater consideration in that choice was being respectful of these people. I would not want someone taking my picture if I was in the same circumstances.

I maintained by composure while I was at the dump handing out food. But when we got back inside that car and drove away, I was crying my eyes out.

I am so thankful for a janitor at Harding University in Searcy, Arkansas that wanted to help someone. And with that hundred dollars he sent, we can feed the dump people bean sandwiches and bananas one more time.
I am so glad I did not let my fear paralyze me.  It would have been easy to do.
A few weeks later a group from Atlanta was here.  Most of these were teenagers.  A very few were taken to the dump to feed bean sandwiches again.  These kids could not believe that people had to live like that.   They went home and raised enough money so that we could begin weekly feedings.  The menu was still sandwiches.

In May 2009, Trey Morgan entered the scene.  He began an annual fundraising day through his blog.  Because we serve a great big God, our God delivered in a big way.  Over $12,000.00 was raised in one day.  On a blog.  If anyone dared to think that it was a fluke, God showed our wrong that was when the next year more than twice that was raised.  In one day.  On a blog.

On May, 27, 2009 we began serving a hot meal of beans, rice and tortillas every Wednesday.

 A hot meal has been served to those people in the dump every Wednesday since except for four or five times.  That is possible because of Dump Day.

Wednesday, May 6 is the 7th annual dump day.  People still work in the dump.  People still live in the dump.  People are still hungry.  Please pray about what you can give this year.

Donations can be made to:
Honduras Hope
P.O. Box 9222
Columbus, MS 39705

or for easy online giving go to

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Beach Day

Today was beach day at Casa de Esperanza.  We have not done this in three years and it was definitely time to do it again.  Some of the kids had never seen the beach because they were too little to go last time.  This time, everyone went. 

None of the kids had been paid for three weeks so when they got their money and got to buy in the store yesterday, that took two hours. 

We have planned this for over two months.  The anticipation level was high all week.  Haley and Emma spent the night here last night.  We came out of my house at  ten minutes after 5:00 to go pack the coolers.  There were kids everywhere.  Carrying stuff.  Packing stuff. 

There were 25 kids and 8 adults.  It was going to take three vehicles to get us there.  I decided to ask Willie if we could rent the bus that day.  That was a good decision.  It was fun for us all to be in one vehicle.  At ten minutes before 6:00, the kids asked me if they could start carrying stuff to the front.  At 6:00, I heard the bus blow its horn and a roar of delight immediately following.

Desired time of departure: 6:00 a.m.  Actual time of departure  6:15 a.m.  I was impressed.  Those kids loaded that bus and we were off.

I expected the excitement to be noisy.  It wasn't.  Some of the kids even went back to sleep.

 The twins were ready for the beach.

Yair looked out the window the whole way.

Two stops, a slight misunderstanding with where the driver thought we were going and where we thought we were going and we were finally there.  And not a single soul puked a single time.

It was beautiful.

First thing we had our morning devotional.  What a great place to have devotional.  And we had worked so hard on the bus ride, it was time for baleadas.

Then most everyone was in the water.

 When the tide came in, the beach disappeared.  We just moved to higher ground.

Emma wore herself out.

Some ate the whole time we were there.  Some played the whole time we were there.  Some found time for both.  Everyone had fun and everyone was tired.

Many of the kids slept on the way home.  Most of the sleepers got a second wind about 45 minutes from home.  It was 7:30 we we got back to Casa.   A very long day.

I cleaned up all the coolers and went to start some of the laundry.  There was no water.  Someone turned it on and I heard the tanks began to fill.  With everyone wanting to shower, I knew it pointless to take about laundry for quite a while.  I came down here, where I was sure I would have water.  I was right.  And my shower felt so good.  And, I got my laundry started, too. 

A long day.  A tiring day.  A fun day.  A good day.