Operation Central America

Come and see what is happening on the Operation Central America missions trip. Also learn about the teams and their prayer requests.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Chisec, Day 1

Buenas dias! After spending the morning driving from Guatemala City we now have one day of service under our belts and the students have had a chance to put all they have learned into practice. We are in Chisec, Guatemala, up in the central highlands rainforest. It is quite warm and humid here - 'sauna-like'may not do it justice!

The students and staff were very excited to finally get to perform and get the medical clinic up and running. The clinic was set up in the church and will be there for the next two days as well. The church is a space about the size of 2 basketball courts, surrounded by brick walls and covered with a high tin roof. They are still finishing the building so the windows and doors are still just nicely shaped holes in the walls and the floor is dirt. We have the doctor see patients in a room in the pastor's house which is adjacent to the church and the dentists (4 graduate students and a supervising dentist) work on the covered patio. The team adapted their system to the facility and language challenges (most people here speak Kechi rather than Spanish so we need 2-step translations) and were running very efficiently. We'll get a count of the number of patients seen in the next update.

Mime and childrens went to a nearby park and performed for and played with a group of about 150 children of various ages. Even with the language difference the interaction has been very good. Last night both teams also did their program during a service at the church. Also at the service 2 of the students were able to give their testimony and Jeremy provided the message. It was a great way to end the first 'real' day of the trip.

Service team had a wonderful day of carrying things here and there and helping the local workers paint the walls of the church. They had an entertaining time with the handmade ladder and paint roller extension handles (long boards taped to the paint rollers).

All of the students and staff have the opportunity to stay with families here. As you might expect the accomodations are a little different than you would probably find at home. But they are having a good experience interacting with the host families and seeing what 'normal' life is like here.

Prayer requests:
1. Health: its hot and everyone needs to be drinking more water than they ever imagined. So far people are doing great and everyone is holding up well. Please pray that we are able to avoid any serious illness.
2. Energy: its hot and the sleeping conditions are not always ideal. Please pray that everyone will be able to get the rest they need to stay healthy and able to stay positively engaged in the trip activities.
3. Connections: we have and will be seeing lots of different people in lots of different circumstances. Please pray that God will touch their hearts so they are open to His message that we bring and also that we will be sensitive to their needs. Also please pray that we can communicate - the interpreters are great and many of the students are doing well with their Spanish but it is always a challenge, so please pray that God gives us the wisdom and ability to present the right message at the right time.
4. Team unity: Everyone is getting along very well, but as days go by and people get tired this may become more of challenge. Please pray that relationships between the team members stay positive and that those who may not be as strongly connected forge some strong connections.
5. Leadership: Our team leaders are doing wonderfully with the "flexible" scheduling. Please pray that they will be able to effectively manage their teams and not forget to take care of themselves.

Thanks for all your support!


  • At 7:30 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Thanks for the update. The kids arrived in Colorado and Project Colorado adventures and work projects are underway! The hotline isn't working yet, but the blog is up. I'm hoping Cam will will be on the blog or hotline sometime while he's there.

    Oh, how I remember the heat and humidity in Guatemala on OCA 2006! Thinking of all of you. Take care of yourself, Tim!!!

    By the way...we are having rain and Kyle drove home without functioning windshield wipers on Big Blue. Bret is at class giving an informative speech he started at 10pm last night. Colin completed day 2 of soccer tryouts and is at Dylan's after hanging out with some church kids today (movie and lunch).

    Love ya,
    Kerry and the boys

  • At 7:51 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    It is great to hear all is going well so far! Kim and I will try to pray every day for all of you. We are finally getting some sleep after the all night party at our house but it was well worth the sleepless night to kick off the OCA team. We are very proud of all of you for doing God's work. "Here am I Lord! Send Me!"

    God Bless!

    Tim and Kim Backlund <><

  • At 3:27 PM , Blogger Business Development Coaching by John McMunn, McMunn Enterprises, Inc. said...

    Hey CJ!

    I miss you boy! Although...we have your EP Senior 'stand-up' sitting at the dining room table, and we feel like you are right here with us!

    Mehan & Jordan's wedding was amazing (as you can imagine) Every one was asking about you, and Tyler...You both were greatly missed.

    350,000 people showed up for the Pittsburgh Penguins victory parade! Ya gotta love it!

    I am keeping all of you in my prayers, Ceej. I love you. Ty sends his love as well.


  • At 3:34 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...


    It's good to hear everything's going well! I wish I could have made it to the send-off service, but I'll just have to trust that you are an EXCELLENT mime! Have so much fun and good luck with everything!


  • At 4:12 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey Jon,

    Glad to hear you made it safely to the airport and Chisec. Keep your money tucked away.

    We are praying for the whole team daily and that your mime presentations will touch the hearts of all who see them. Do your best to show God's love for all.

    Sounds like the service team could have used your height when painting the church. "Boards taped to the rollers! Amazing!!"

    Drink plenty of liquids and get some sleep since you'll need it to beat the heat. It's warm and humid here in Eden Prairie too!

    Mom is getting reservations set for travel to visit Mark in Arizona. More heat, but much less humidity! Ha!

    God Bless you all as you serve Him. With all our LOVE, Dad and Mom (Busch)

  • At 4:58 PM , Blogger Janice said...

    Hello Lauren, glad to know you all made it there safely...sounds like an interesting trip so far, much different than Minnetonka! Lily missed you all day Sunday, me too. Take care of yourself and can't wait to hear more news about everyone down there. Try to get some sleep and hope you are able to make it "comfy"! We are fine, and very rainy here since you left but that's ok. Love you lots! God bless you! Mom

  • At 5:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hope all is well down there in that beautiful country! Can't wait to hear all about it. You're missed very much back home but I know how incredible what you're doing is. Have fun and I hope to have a personalized update from you soon! Love you much, my sister..Take care and come home safe!


  • At 6:27 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi Steph

    Hope your managing the heat O.K. in all that BLACK! I know God is going to use all the teams in powerful ways for His Glory!

    Dad said to tell you he will be fishing on Father's Day and wishes you could be with him but knows you have way more imp. things to do, like serving!

    We are praying often for you all and trusting that God will meet all your needs!Have fun steph and check out Rom. 10:13-15 (you have beaut. feet!

    love you,

  • At 8:09 PM , Anonymous Mom, Dad & Cole said...


    I really missed you today as I was cleaning your room! Hope you recognize it and everything you want is still there!! Tomorrow it is supposed to storm. It is humid here too, but probably not like where you are. Hope you are well and rested. We're praying for you daily and that not only will your mime presentations speak to people there, but that you will be blessed and spoken to by the Holy Spirit. Cole is sick with the flu - fever of 102 tonight. Hope he's better when Scott gets here tomorrow night.

    Take care of yourself and know we miss you and love you very much.


    Mom, dad and Cole

  • At 10:17 PM , Anonymous Colin Fox:) said...

    Hey dad, Soccer is great and I really miss u. Even Kieran and Beeker miss u. I went to 8th grade Flom camp and was easy. I reffed 2 club games tonight and one of them was Brandon Brink's little sister's game. It was fun. I hate protein shakes.

    Love u,
    Colin Fox

  • At 10:54 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    To all the Seniors!!!
    U guys rock!!! I am so proud that you all have decided to go back again or are going for the first time. You guys will have the time of your lives. Let me know what is the same and what is different.
    Love you all
    Ashley Weis

  • At 11:14 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey Joel,

    How is your Spanish holding up?

    We are leaving in the morning to pick up Anna. We plan to play some mini golf there if it's not raining.

    Anna has Special Olympic competition Fri. and Sat. plus the relatives from Montana are going to be here so it will be busy.

    We miss you...the house has been quiet w/out u2!!! We are praying A LOT for you and the team. God has brought you there to teach you about Himself and to use you for His kingdom.

    Let God be God and He will be glorified!!

    Love, Mom and Dad

  • At 10:23 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hope all is well being Jesus. Keep gettin after it. Were praying for you here. Let me know how things are going. We miss you. And tell Kelsey me and VC got lost in Hopkins on a bike ride in the rain yesterday and her muscular father almost had to rescue us. Keep getting after it mime team. See you guys soon.

    Ya boi,


  • At 11:44 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I'm praying for you, Steph. I love you lots! Aunt Laurie :)

  • At 1:39 PM , Anonymous Jessi's Mom & Dad said...

    Hi Jessi!

    We miss you so much! Our home just isn't the same without your shining eyes and smile! And even your punches! We pray you are healthy, well rested, and feel God's arms around you as you serve and pass on God's love for you to all the Guatemalan people.

    I miss you working at VBS with me too! We've had 500-600 kids every day and they're loving the music!

    Josh is really happy with his new job, but he's wearing himself down with classes and 10-1/2 hr. work days. Dad, Jake and I are going up to the cabin this weekend for Father's Day -- I know dad will miss his baby girl!

    As a VBS song says, "let your light shine" Jessi -- and "do not be afraid, because God is with you wherever you go!" We love you soooo much!!!
    Mom, Dad, Josh and Jake

  • At 2:34 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Dearest CJ,
    I miss you because you make every situation fun. I just put in a huge garden I can't wait for you to see. Hello to the whole mime team. I pray for you all to stay rested, healthy, and that the people you are serving will want to know more. I pray each one of your faith stories makes an impact on their lives.

    Momma Rene

    Hello Amy,
    I pray the medical team is rested and healthy. I can't wait to hear more about the service work the medical team is doing.

    Enjoy some Guatemala meals Amy. Say hello to Andy if you see him.


  • At 3:25 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi! I hope that you are all just having a blast. I know that you are. I can't wait to hear about all the cool stuff you did in Chisec. It sounds aweseome there! Kelsey, everytime I see a red jeep I think of you! Haha I'm sure that you are just all doing fabulous on the mime team. And Britt, I hope those scrubs are holding up! Miss you all lots. Love,
    Chelsey Payne

  • At 10:00 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    I miss you my Sunshine Girl! Hope all is well! I miss you tons. I've been to Salt Lake City and Atlanta and am heading home tomorrow - then off to Boston on Sunday. Looking forward to us both being home. Love you baby.

  • At 10:35 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey, we miss you. We received your message and glad you are ok. We think of you often and are praying for you and the whole team. We are proud and so encouraged by the willingness of you all to serve.
    Lots of love to you,
    Dad, Mom and Buddy
    Please greet Jaime for us.

  • At 10:59 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hey Missy,
    we all miss you so much! It is so quiet around here without you. I got a cold from the couple all- night shopping and packing adventures; I hope you did not get sick!

    We went to Joey's party today, he is bummed he didn't plan around your trip. Everyone was asking about you.

    We are so proud of you and are keeping you and all the group in our prayers. Take this opportunity to really stretch yourself and find out what God can do through you and what his plans are for you.

    take lots of pictures and drink lots of water.
    Love you lots!!!
    mom, dad, Nick and Rach. (pooh)

  • At 11:40 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi Sarah,
    It has been a quiet week here without you! Kristina is with Mari and friends tonight before Mari heads to LA on Sunday for her internship. I had to clean your room :) because Doug is here with us for the weekend for a disc golf tournament. We miss you a lot and pray that you are staying healthy, rested and hydrated. I am very proud of you and can't wait to read another update on how it's going for all of you.

    Love you!


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