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.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Hello from the TuriCentro Tiosh Aboj in beautiful downtown Santiago Atitlan.

We had a half day of service this morning, then had lunch at Camp Eden before moving up to the hotel for R&R. We will be here tonight, tomorrow and tomorrow night. The kids have been working hard and so are now ready to relax a bit and enjoy the wonderful sunshine (although we have warned them multiple times about the sunburns…).

We had good service days in Santiago. It was a little more challenging with a number of places speaking a Mayan dialect instead of Spanish. We were able to work it out, though, and saw good results at the programs. Service got to spend the day and a half building a baptism beach for the local church so they are the first team to officially spend time actually in Lake Atitlan. Medical was able to do a clinic and a half, even though they were down to the last bits of medicine. We stopped and refilled a number of he meds on the way from Malacatan, but we went through all of that as well. The positive side of that is the number of people they were able to help, people who otherwise would probably not receive any medical care.

We have had some good teaching times for various leaders during the trip during our evening get together. Those, along with the devotional book, have hopefully helped the students develop a better understanding of What missions really means and how to translate what they have experienced on this trip to their lives when they return to Minnesota. We will have at least one more time together to recap the trip and talk about ways we will be able to encourage each other and make this more than a passing experience.

Tomorrow we will sleep in a little, spend the morning shopping in Santiago and the take time in the afternoon to let each team debrief their experiences and then just enjoy the pool and hotel grounds. Saturday we head for Antigua and then a hotel in Guatemala before we fly out Sunday morning. We are all looking forward to the homecoming crowd we anticipate will be waiting at the airport for us.

Following are some more posts from team members, and then some pictures from our time in San Marcos.
Hasta manana.

Hi Family and Friends!
This is the first time I have been able to read the blog so I am sorry if you have been waiting! This has definitely been a life changing experience! My heart has been totally broken by the degree of need the people hear have. The medical team has worked many long hours and we have seen over 1000 patients. I have seen things that I have seen in medical books, but never expected to see face to face. The kids are getting some awesome experience. I am really looking forward to hugging my family. We are soooooo blessed! If you have a chance to blog on the Colorado Blog Please tell Mari I miss her and I can’t wait to hear how things have been going for her.
Scott was sick when we were leaving San Marcos but it passed pretty quickly. I had one day that was pretty tough, but I think it was something I ate. The gluten free diet has been a challenge, especially when you can’t speak the language. Everyone is currently healthy which is a blessing for the nurses! I’m looking forward to sharing my experiences with everyone. God has worked Miracles and has been very very good! I love all of you so much! See you soon! You better be at the airport Kirk and Trent!
Love tons! Wendy Stensrud.
Hola Familia y mattsons/hansons!!
This is my first chance to write!!! Yeah!! we are doing so well and building great relationships here both on the team , with the interpreters and with the beautiful people of Guatemala. I miss all of you, rol (aka gringo grande rollie /butt ka), boppa, luke, jen, mickey, ben, Zach, Krista, and of course my sweet little piper (bee-girl) we have seen about 1,000 patients and still have energy left!! Nellie is now almost fluent and I just now sat with 3 little mayans who taught me how to count in Tzu-to-hil!! I pray you are all well and happy! We are really doing great things here, including surgery. The talents on our team all compliment each other so we have such a well balanced ability to serve. It is so cool. Luke and mick, say hi to boppa and tell him I miss him, too!! JAIME SAYS HI TO GRINGO GRANDE AND TOMORROW WE PASS OUT THE SHOES FROM THE KANTARS!!! WOW, HOW GREAT THIS TRIP HAS BECOME. CAN’T WAIT TO SEE YOU ALL
Kirk are you out there?
This is amazing. Today all I could think of while we were riding in the back of a pick up truck to our clinic was that this is surreal. God is dong amazing things here and I’m so thankful to be a part of it. We are staying in dorms now and it’s so fun getting to know all these wonderful senior highers. I really have a heart for all of them and love being called mom by many. Thankfully Jess is only slightly embarrassed of me and her hugs are getting me thru some of the more emotional days after seeing really sick patients.. Only 4 nights left until I can come home and squeeze you kiddos. Claire, have so much fun at camp. Please, be careful and look for a letter from me. I really love you guys. Chris, thanks for encouraging me to do this. I will be changed because of it. Emma, I hope you’re having a fun summer so far. I bet you love sleeping in. Chris jr, I miss your smile, see you soon. Thanks for all the prayers. It’s working. We’re healthy and happy.
Hugs and kisses,
Heather, mommy
Jessica Krocak
Hola! Today was pretty hard core for the service team. We were basically moving sand to a spot on a lake where people are going to be baptized , which is super! I’m really enjoying the time here in Guatemala. I think I enjoy it because I’m really connecting with God. Being here is like finding pieces of God. I just love it! I am also getting to know new people. I never thought that are OCA team would be so encouraging and so inclusive. I can’t help but feel welcomed everywhere we go. I don’t want to go home, its just so beautiful here. Sorry I wrote some random stuff, ADHD does wonders. I just wanted everyone back home to know that this trip is worth going on. BUENO! BUENO! BUENO!

Hi family!! It’s Lisi. I just wanted to tell Catie that I am seriously right by tons of volcanoes and that it’s awesome. Miss you! Bye.
Hi mom and dad!
Today we start R&R and we only have 3 ½ days until I come home!!! I’m so excited to see you guys! I’m already planning my Sunday night meal, which is macaroni and cheese, an apple (please buy some apples), and milk! I’m having a great time but I’m definitely ready to come home. Well we’re starting lunch now so I have to go but have a great weekend and I can’t wait to see you Sunday night!!
Love you!


  • At 6:00 PM , Blogger Nancy said...

    Wow! God is good and He's done some awesome work on this trip! We're so excited for all of you! We'll keep praying for your health and safety.
    Mary and Jess-any food requests?
    Lots of love,
    Nancy, Tom and Simon

  • At 9:02 PM , Anonymous Beth Neubrech said...

    it' sooo good to hear from you and see you in the pictures I pray you all have a fun couple of days and an uneventful trip home.
    Love, Mom

  • At 9:05 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Words can not express how much your stories warm my heart about the lives you are changing including your own and those of us anxiously waiting to hear all about it. Hugs and love Sarah bear! Can't wait to see you Sunday! Beth

  • At 10:32 PM , Anonymous Mark and Kris said...

    It has been such a blessing to read this blog! Thank you for updating it daily and including the great pictures. Many days I have gotten teary-eyed as I read your amazing stories. They touch my heart. It is truly incredible how God has worked through all of you on this trip. I am just amazed at the number of people you have ministered to. Thanks for all your hard work! You have been a blessing to so many people, and I'm sure you've been blessed by them as well. Enjoy your last couple days of R&R. You certainly deserve it!

    Sarah, we miss you lots and can't wait to see you on Sunday night! I planted flowers outside your bedroom window yesterday, so they should be bright and cheery for you to enjoy.

    Ben and Dad say "Hi" too. We'll all be there to greet you at the airport. Can't wait to give you a big hug and see your smiling face!!

    Love ya lots,


  • At 12:10 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    We continue to pray for your health emotionally and physically on this journey. It will be awesome to hear about your adventures! Gods planning has placed you all there to share with others and learn something about your own faith. We have so much to thank Him for! Ashley, grandma submitted a post. Hope you received it. I am wondering what all of the children think of your red hair. The children in the photos are beautiful. I can tell that you and your fellow missionaries see that too. Enjoy. Your time has come to rest and reflect. I believe your travels have changed my life too!
    Hope you can feel the hugs and kisses I am sending.
    Love you, mom
    PS. White rice works

  • At 8:46 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    To granddaughter Ashley Davis
    Kathy and Alan called yesterday to let me know that they have been following your journey on the blog. Their email service doesn't work at the cabin - but they wanted me to tell you that they are very proud of you and they love you lots!
    Autumn searched the globe to find Guatemala. Everyone always wants to know how long an air flight it would be.
    Enjoy your R&R time. Even Jesus took time to rest. It's important to take time to reflect, share and recharge your batteries.
    Gram is also so very,very proud of you for accepting this challenge of Guatemale - and for sharing God's love with others. You bring joy to my heart.

  • At 9:31 AM , Anonymous Vicki said...

    To all...You got mail!!

    These verses were part of my devotion today and they seemed so applicable to your group, I wanted to share them for reflection and inspiration! You all have been sharing your individual gifts (some that you may not have even realized God had graced you with) the last two weeks and have also experienced the awesome oneness and power of the body of Christ!
    I'm proud of you all for sharing our awesome God through your talents and gifts! It seems apparent God has blessed you by enriching your souls!

    Ron and I feel immensely blessed & appreciative for the presence you leaders have had/have in our children's lives!
    Stay strong....
    Vicki (Autumn's mom)

    Romans 12:4-6a, "Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given us." (NIV)

    1 Corinthians 12:4-6, "There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men." (NIV)

  • At 1:14 PM , Anonymous Holzworth's said...

    Thank you so much for doing this blog throughout the trip and keeping us informed daily, it has been so great reading this and keeping in touch with what all the Teams have been doing and praise God for the lives that have been touched by all of you.

    Lindsey, we miss you soo much and am so excited to see you Sunday night. Enjoy your last couple of days of R&R.
    Love you forever!!
    Mom, Dad and Luke

  • At 1:18 PM , Blogger Kerry and Colin said...

    Greetings from Minnesota! Wow...you have almost completed one of the most stretching trips of your life. Hope you have found it worthwhile. Looking forward to seeing you and hearing all about it.

    The Chicago group boards a bus after midnight to head home. Please pray for their last day of service.

    Tim, either Cam or me will be there to pick you up from Wooddale after you get all the equipment back to church. If we don't connect before you leave Guatemala, please text or call us from Houston with your timeframe. The Chicago group is supposed to arrive around 10am tomorrow. It will be good to have you both back home.

    Connie and Peggy, et al, hope your experience has been fruitful and memorable!

    Kerry Fox

  • At 1:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi ashley! I hope yoour having a lot of fun there! (Mom just ran a red light...) anyways I have been sleeping in your room because I miss you so much: ( see you soon! Love you - hanna

  • At 1:56 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Hi ashley! I hope yoour having a lot of fun there! (Mom just ran a red light...) anyways I have been sleeping in your room because I miss you so much: ( see you soon! Love you - hanna

  • At 2:10 PM , Anonymous Amanda DePesa said...

    MARIA!!! I have missed you o so verry much!! i can not wait to see you on sunday!! :D i hope that you have had just the most fun in guat. (with out me)I hope that my "husband" in guatemala will be happy if when were married, we move to sweden. i have always wanted a 'svidesh accent. then i could say volkswagen right! yayy!i havent gone in your room once!! its HORIBLEEEEEEE!!! i wanted to go in the yesterday but then mom strongly scolded me and said "AMANDA! YOU ARE NOT ALOWED IN MARIAS ROOM! HOW MANY TIMES DO I HAVE TO SAY THAT!" It was prety depressing :( but i got over it! i was sick for 3 days!! and i had a sore throut. but im okey dokey now!!!!! :D i hope that mime make up wasen't to hard on your skin. (if ya know what i mean!) when you get back home, i am going out to lunch with you. ok well i guess this msg is long enough for my big sister :) LOVE YOU MARIA!! see you when you get back :)

  • At 2:23 PM , Anonymous Alyssa said...

    Hi Maria!! Just two more days until I can wrap my arms around you and bite your neck! That will be awesome! I love you lots and can't wait to see you! Hope the rest of the trip is fun and safe. Take some time to reflect. Write down your thoughts. Love you!
    P.S. Guess Dr. Henderson likes you enough. Your in.


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