Thursday, September 22, 2011

Bits and Pieces…Bruises by Rutgers

There has been a lot going on this week, so I have decided to do another update. This time I am going to break it down day by day to keep things straight. Prepare for a long one…

Monday, September 19
This entry was written by my daughter, Teisha, who accompanied Dick Rutgers, Gerardo, Taryn, and me on a trip to Las Palmas and La Gomera. Comments in red were added by me.

Today, I had the wonderful opportunity of accompanying Dick, Daryl (my Dad), Taryn, and Gerardo (our translator) to visit Escuintla and Las Palmas. We visted and were able to help more people than I imagined we would! Our day went a little something like this...
IMG00882-20110919-1051After departing at roughly 9:30 this morning, we headed off for Walter's house (a six year-old boy who is just about as cute as they get!) He has an appointment at Hermano Pedro Hospital in Antigua tomorrow, and we went to talk to his mother about all that would mean as far as what time to get there and what to expect. We also provided her with the money to take the chicken bus into Antigua along with money for the appointment itself. Please pray that all will go well with his appointment tomorrow and they will be able to take care of all that is needed! (Actually, we went planning to arrange for their appointment for casting of his legs for new braces. After talking to his mother, we realized that he is also having hearing problems, so we arranged for her to come in early the next morning to see a doctor for that as well.)

Second stop was David's house.. We went there to invite him to camp and also to see when his graduation will take place... which is a pretty big deal! It was a privilege to get to meet his family! :)
IMG00887-20110919-1230Third stop was down the road to visit an elderly woman, Pilar, who is 85 years old and who is struggling from malnutrition. I can honestly say that I've never seen a person that skinny in person before... We checked in to make sure she was drinking the Insure we provided her a little while ago and to make sure she was drinking plenty of water. We found out that she was only taking about half the Insure she should be taking and that she hardly drinks water... She prefers coffee. But Dad (Daryl) explained to her (with the help of Gerardo) that she needs to be taking more Insure and she needs to be drinking lots more water for 2 reasons. First that she will start to feel better physically and gain some weight and be healthier altogether. And Secondly, she'll gain the energy she'll need to meet some new, cute men. ;)

IMG00888-20110919-1230And while we were there with Pilar, we met a little boy who is 4 years old and who has struggled with fevers, breathing, and just lack of energy his whole life. His big brown eyes and his sad little face broke my heart! But we were able to set up a time for them to go to Antigua to Hermano Pedro next week to get him checked out. Prayer would also be greatly appreciated that all will go well with his appointment! (I will be meeting them in Antigua at 4:00 pm on Sunday to set them up with lodging so they can be at Hermano Pedro early on Monday morning to see a doctor. We suspect he has heart problems and are concerned about the severity. His mouth and fingers often turn blue due to a lack of oxygen. Please pray for him. His name is Alejandro.)

IMG00889-20110919-1308On our fourth visit, we saw a man named Ponsiano. We were pleased to see that his father had built him some parallel bars.. that he can hold on to to hopefully Work on his walking! It was very encouraging to see his famly step up and try to help him in his need! It was kind of rough for him to stand and walk, but it didn't matter because the excitement in his eyes and the smile on his face made up for it! Hopefully with time and more practice, he'll get much better at it. (The dedication of this family has been a blessing to see.)

IMG00891-20110919-1319The fifth place was across the street from Ponsiano's house, where we visited an elderly couple, Pedro and Victoria. Being as old as they are, they were previously advised to drink about 6 cups of water a day because they were dehydrated... and they could use all the energy the could get. They're now up to drinking 3 cups of water a day... that's progress, right?

Sixth stop was a few doors down to Reyna's house, an elderly woman who was also having dehydration issues. We stopped there for just a few minutes to make sure she was drinking all that was suggested to her (and of course she wasn't... but she's drinking more water than she was before..) But even though we couldn't stay for long, the smile on her face when we walked in told me that it was worth it anyway.

IMG00893-20110919-1548After Reyna's, we went to Carlos' house to drop off a few camp forms... one for himself and two others that he would give to his friends... And after Carlos, we went to Maria's house to also drop off a camp form. She's 23 and has severe spastic Cerebral Palsy. She lights up the whole room with her beautiful smile!

(At this point, God redirected our trip and we ended up visiting a family that we hadn’t intended to visit. It was a God orchestrated change, as we realized that we needed to confront a family with some concerns. We praise God that both Dick and I were there for this and that Gerardo did an amazing job of communicating and confronting in love. Due to confidentiality and my respect for the family, I have chosen to omit these details.)

I am so thankful that I could be a part of the ministry of Dick and Dad (Daryl) And I am thankful that I can learn how to better serve my Jesus with them. I would be very blessed if someday I could have half as much wisdom as they do... 

So today was a long, but great day and I learned a lot! ..but most of all, God was glorified! And that's all that matters. :)

(Thanks, Teisha!)

Tuesday, September 20
Today was one of those full days that were filled with back-to-back appointments. Here is a snapshot of the day:

  8:15 am – Take Brittney to Rey de las Naciones school where she is considering accepting a teaching position for next school year.
  9:30 am – Meet Walter and his parents at Hermano Pedro to see how their doctor’s visit for his ear problem is going.
  10:15 am – Much needed stop at the bank with a long line ahead of me.
  11:00 am– Pick up Brittney
  12:00 pm– Staff meeting with our new Encarga Director
  1:30 pm– Discipleship meeting with a young man
  3:00 pm– Return to Hermano Pedro to take Walter and his parents to their appointment to get casted for new leg braces
  4:30 pm– Return home to catch up on e-mails and office work
  8:30 pm– Head to Ciudad Vieja to pick up our two houseguests, Scott Hardee and John Siemons and get them settled upstairs
  11:00 pm– Crash hard in bed to prepare for a 7:30 am departure the next morning.

Here are a few pictures of Walter getting casted for his braces. He had a good time smearing plaster on my arms and face!

Wednesday, September 21
IMG00911-20110922-0831This morning Gerardo, Scott, John and I loaded up and headed to Chimaltenango to meet with Dick Rutgers and head out for a three day trip to recruit for the annual camps for children, teens, and adults with special needs. Of course, this means three days of dealing with Dick’s driving and the ensuing bruises. It was only a few weeks ago that I stopped seeing blood in my urine from my last trip out with him.

Although Dick insisted that we arrive at his place early so that we could get an early start, we didn’t leave Chimal until almost 11:00 am. Dick lost his cell phone, and after looking for some time, decided that it must be stolen or destroyed because it was off when we tried to call it. So, off we went to the Tigo store so that he could report it missing and arrange to have his number transferred to another phone. Nothing is easy in Guatemala, so an hour and 15 minutes later, we left the store with the process not yet complete. We all took a vote and decided we should tie Dick’s new phone around his neck.

Since we got such a late start we were not able to accomplish a lot today. We made the trip to the town of Nebaj and had a brief visit with an elderly lady named Juana to invite her to camp. She speaks Ketchequal, so the conversation went from English through Gerardo in Spanish and then through Juana’s daughter to Ketchequal. Then the process was reversed.

IMG00909-20110921-1822After leaving her home, we checked into a nice clean motel. We had the choice of rooms that shared a public bathroom and had hot water and rooms that had a private bathroom with no hot water. Dick, Gerardo, and I chose the latter while Scott and John chose the hot water. That was a good thing since John had been complaining about how cold he was all day. When I came to there room to get them for supper, I found John trying to stay warm and looking like the Virgin Mary.

After getting settled, we headed to a local restaurant run my an American named Don. The food was good and cheap, but I think we were his only customers all night. So it took a while for them to heat up the stoves, find the food, and kill the necessary animals they needed to cook. But we had a nice visit as we waited and left after 1 1/2 hours.

Epilogue from the following morning:
We returned to the motel and had a good night’s sleep. I did, however, wake up once to Dick talking in his sleep. I think he said something about hitting potholes and killing Daryl, but he was mumbling so I’m not sure.

Thursday, September 22
We met this morning at 7:15 to head out for an early breakfast. We wanted to eat quickly and hit the road because we had a lot on the agenda for the day. We quickly realized, however, that those plans might be in jeopardy when we arrived at Don’s restaurant, placed our orders, and Dick and I had to walk up the street to buy eggs for our meals. As Don ambled casually about the kitchen slowly making our breakfast, we had still more time to visit.

We finally got our food, ate, paid and left the restaurant at 9:00 am. So much for an early start. But we have all learned that it is just a part of life here.

IMG00913-20110922-0921We left the motel and made another stop to invite a camper to camp. This was at Maria’s house, a young mother with a bad leg who walks with crutches. It is always a treat to see the previous year’s campers light up when they see Dick at the door. They know that means that camp is almost here again.

IMG00939-20110922-1241From there we headed through some of the most beautiful countryside you have ever seen. Winding and rough roads take you over mountains and through valleys surrounded by God’s creation that takes your breath away. Even Dick’s attempts to hit every hole and bump couldn’t detract from our wonder (although I still need to take time to count my bruises and check for internal hemorrhaging).

IMG00926-20110922-1157We arrived at Victor’s house late morning. He is a charming 19 year old who suffers from cerebral palsy, but is a very motivated and driven young man. He and his family managed to get him into school years ago, before most children with special needs were admitted into public schools. He has thrived. Today we delivered some crutches and a PET chair to him. A Pet chair is a wagon that is propelled by hand pedals. These chairs have worked well for Victor in the past, so Dick had found another one that was for adults to deliver to him.

IMG00933-20110922-1208While we assembled the chair, we attracted a growing crowd of locals who came out to see what was happening. Before we were done, there must have been 15 or 20 people gathered around. Once we were done and Victor had a chance to demonstrate his skills in it, we all had prayer together. A church service broke out as many of the Guatemalan’s prayed out loud together. This was a special time of connecting and sharing the love of Jesus, but I am not sure who received more of the love, the people of the town or our team.

From there, we headed to the nearest decent hotel (about 2 hours away) and checked in for the night. We put our bags in the room and headed out for one more visit with a wonderful lady named Maria. She and her husband, who is disabled, have been regular attenders at the camp for some time, and Dick wanted to make sure they received their invitation. We arrived to discover that her husband is in Guatemala City for surgery to remove a cancerous tumor from his throat. We knelt together and prayed for both of them. In spite of her sadness and fear, Maria radiated the joy of the Lord. Please pray for this couple.

IMG00941-20110922-1309Near the end of the day, we found out that Dick has been struggling with his new GPS unit. It has a feature which allows you to take a photo with it and it places it on the map to help people see the destination for which you are looking. Dick keeps turning it around with the lens pointing toward him and trying to take the picture. Scott observed that we probably have a lot of nice photos that show us what Dick looks like at Maria’s house, at Victor’s house, at Don’s restaurant, etc. Remind me not to borrow Dick’s GPS!

Tonight we enjoyed a nice meal in a local restaurant that did not take hours to prepare. Plus, it was extremely cheap. But we still sat and visited for over an hour as we shared our testimonies with one another. During that time, I was both humbled and touched to realize what a privilege it is to work alongside these men.

Now I am settled into my room that has BOTH a private bath AND hot water. I cannot tell you how pampered and spoiled I feel!

Blessings from some little town, somewhere in Guatemala! (I can’t remember the name and I am too tired to figure it out.)


Saturday, September 17, 2011

An Inside Look

IMG00745-20110716-1816I am tired as I write this. It has been a long day as Taryn, Jeremiah, Gerardo and I have weighed, sorted, and packed food and distributed it to some of our local sponsored families. Each month the process gets bigger as more families are added.

Today was just a distribution to families who are a part of San Antonio Aguas Calientes. That includes the three aldeas of San Andres, San Antonio, and Santa Catarina. Other distributions occur at the first of each month, and still others occur as a part of our regular trips into villages.

I thought it might be a good idea to show you what is involved in each distribution and how it works. I want transparency in our ministry, and our prayer and financial supporters deserve to know how God is using their help.

DSCF7763It starts when we find a person with special needs who requires assistance. We find these people in a variety of ways. Sometimes they just show up at our door seeking help. This has happened on six different occasions. Sometimes we are sent to them by friends or neighbors who know of their need. Still other times, we simply stumble upon them as a part of our village work. Often, we can only explain it as a God-ordained appointment.

Once we find a person in need, we seek to analyze their situation to determine if assistance is truly necessary. If support is justified, we determine the level of assistance that is required. Our goal is to provide assistance in key areas, not to provide all of their needs. Often the difference between losing their home and paying their bills is simply the cost of a child’s medication or doctor’s visit. In those cases, we provide the medication or pay for the doctor. In other cases, it is $30 of groceries.

Once the needs are verified and the level of assistance is determined, we seek a sponsor for that family. Our primary avenue for finding these sponsors is this blog. Someone reads here about the needs of a family and contacts me with a desire to sponsor them. Note: When a person or family chooses to sponsor a child or person in need, every penny that they give goes directly to provide the needs of that person. None is used for administrative costs, salaries, or even the cost of gas for deliveries. A $50 gift results in $50 of food, medicine, and/or diapers going directly to the sponsored family.

IMG00261-20110318-1408That brings us to the shopping (my least favorite part of the process). In the early days, that was done in local grocery stores as we purchased the necessary amounts for one or two families. As the ministry has grown, we have graduated to buying 20 lb. bags of sugar, 40 lb. bags of rice, 10 lb. bags of powdered milk, and 30 lb. bags of black beans at Pricesmart (comparable to Costco or Sam’s Club). Today I realized that we are ready to go to the next level of purchasing 100 lb. bags of each.

In addition to food, a list is consulted for the required medications and we shop at a pharmacy that gives us a 30% discount. We also purchase diapers for children and adult continence products for the older ones.

DSCF8082DSCF8080As the distribution gets close, the large quantities of product are split into smaller portions and sealed in ziplock bags to keep out insects and moisture. This can be time consuming as all of the food is split into 2.5-5 lb. portions, air is removed, and bags are sealed. Then the food is sorted into different piles for each family and bagged. Each family receives 10 lbs. of rice, 8 lbs of beans, 5 lbs. of Maseca, 3 lbs. of sugar, 2.5 lbs. of powdered milk, 3 bags of Encamparina, and 8 packets of soup in addition to any diapers or medication they require.

DSCF8089When the food is distributed we don’t just drop it off at the door. We enter each home, visit for a while, find out how the child is doing, give them the food/medicine/ diapers, and pray with them.  We also check on the well-being of the entire family, knowing the emotional, financial, and physical toll that caring for a person with special needs can take. Each month we remind every family that the help is from Jesus and that He loves them very much. We also let them know that our prayers for them continue all month long.

DSCF8087On a regular basis, those who sponsor a child or person receive an update, along with a photo and news of recent deliveries. This process takes longer and longer each time we do it, as the list of sponsors and sponsored families keeps growing. However, we believe this is important as it keeps individuals connected to those they are supporting and reminds them to keep praying.

I love these distribution. They are my favorite part of our ministry, and I always return exhausted, but full of life. I want to thank each of you who pray and give to make these days possible. Whether you sponsor a family, give to Hope for Home or Hogar de la Esperanza, or simply hit your knees on our behalf, God is using you to make this vision a reality day after day. May He bless you richly in return for all that you do!

Daryl, Wanda, and the Crew

Friday, September 16, 2011

Catching Up

IMG00837-20110909-1159Now that the Ecklebargers are settled in and no longer need my regular assistance, I am working hard to get caught up on all the things that I have neglected over the last month. At the top of that list was spending time with the kids in Hermano Pedro. I realized last week that it had been over three weeks since I had been there. So, on Friday Wanda, Krishauna and I headed out to hang out with our kids.

IMG00833-20110909-1125We had a great time holding the children and were able to check three of them out for lunch at Pollo Camperos. Elmer, Arianna and Miguel had a good time enjoying chicken, potatoes, french fries and milkshakes. And so did we. I had been so busy with life, I had failed to realize how much I missed all of our kids in HP. I found myself breathing fresh life after a marathon stretch.

Not all of my catching up has been this much fun, though. Office work, which I hate, had been stacking up along with a backlog of e-mails and correspondence that were waiting. I have had to frequently remind myself that everything is important and can make a difference as long as I do it to the glory of God…even office work. However, since I doubt you want to see photos of me sitting at my desk with a forced grin, I won’t bother including pictures of those days.

134374_1386628404087_1783368608_735555_6199999_oOn Monday Gerardo, Jeremiah, Joshua and I traveled to Villa Nueva. Some friends of ours from the States have a young man named Daniel that they have unofficially adopted who lives there, and he has been going through a rough time. They asked us to check on him and provide him with some food. So, with nothing more than an address for his girlfriend’s house and the awareness that Villa Nueva is a red zone (a government warning regarding certain areas based upon crime and gang activity), we headed out.

Villa Nueva is only about 12 1/2 miles from our house, as the crow flies. We aren’t crows, so it took us about 1 1/2 hours to arrive in the city. The next half hour was spent asking six different people directions and gradually finding our way across town. When we finally found the address, only his girlfriends mother and grandmother were there, and they were very distrustful. It took us 10 minutes to convince them that we were okay and not out to hurt Daniel. Finally, her mother led us to Daniel’s workplace and we had a nice visit. It was quite an adventure!

DSCF8047On Wednesday we celebrated Gerardo’s birthday. This young man has become an important part of our family and life as he becomes more and more involved in our home and helping with our ministry. He now serves as my helper on our 4-wheel drive team, providing excellent translation when my Spanish falters. He also has Jesus’ heart for the people and shows it when he ministers to them. He is currently enrolled as the first student in our Encarga pastor’s training program and will be receiving excellent training from Ron Ecklebarger and ministry mentoring from me.

DSCF8062He turned 26, and our family had the privilege of giving him his first birthday cake. We also gave him a Cubs hat, which he had been wanting for some time. Now that he is officially a Cubs fan, he is now officially a part of our family! We love him dearly. Please pray for Gerardo in the months and years ahead as he prepares for ministry and assumes more and more ministry responsibilities.

IMG00850-20110915-1013Yesterday (September 15th) was Guatemala’s Independence Day. We celebrated 190 years of independence with parades of drummers, floats, and dancers from surrounding schools. They marched through Antigua and to the stadium where they laid the Guatemalan flag on the field. The entire parade was wonderful, although the drums were rather loud. The color, pageantry, and pride in their country was evident, and I am pleased to consider myself a part of Guatemala.

IMG00855-20110915-1059After the parade our entire family header over to Hermano Pedro for about an hour with the kids. (I told you I have some catching up to do.) As always, it was wonderful to have our entire family there ministering to the children. I believe those times are when I love being a father most.

As we walked through the park from HP to Burger King for a family lunch, we got caught in a downpour. (This was a rainy season downpour that you can come closest to experiencing by having your spouse/child/sibling/friend stand on your roof with a 5 gallon bucket of water and dump it on you as you walk out the door.) By the time we made it to the restaurant we were all dripping wet and laughing. After finally finding tables, we ate and dried off. (Actually, we went from dripping wet to soggy like a sponge.)

IMG00878-20110915-1343On the way home we encountered typical roads during rainy season. The photo here is not of a tiny country trail, but of the main road leading from Antigua to Ciudad Vieja, which we have to travel. After a decent rain, this road flows with 6 to 10 inches of water, and a boat or jet ski would be a better mode of transportation than a car or van. I have been told that they are going to get around to fixing that…one of these days.

Well, that’s all for now. Please pray for me as I will be doing a lot of traveling in the next week to catch-up with families in four different villages. I pray that you have a great week!

Daryl, Wanda, and the Crew

Monday, September 5, 2011

Looking for Normal

I want to begin by giving you an update on my family situation back home. If you follow this blog, you read last week how my cousin shot his wife and then himself last Saturday night. This, understandably, was a shock to our entire family and we have wrestled with the situation all week. It is still hard to imagine this happening within our own family. Many of you have been praying for his wife, Tara, and Scott’s immediate family while also praying for me. Thank you for all your prayers. We have felt them.

As I reported on Monday, Tara is expected to live. The bullet hit her in the hand, one lung, and her spleen, and she has already had two surgeries to repair the damage. I received a message from my sister about an hour ago telling me that her blood pressure is high and she is now running a fever. They are doing some scans this afternoon to try to determine the cause of these complications. Please continue to lift her up in prayer. Scott’s funeral was on Thursday.

Meanwhile, life has continued here in Guatemala. The last week has continued to be filled with helping the Ecklebargers with their transition to their new country. There is so much involved in such a move that it is hard to adequately prepare a family for all the tasks ahead of time. But, overall, their family is dealing well with all the changes and work involved.

Over the last three weeks I have logged over 600 miles (1000 kilometers) in my van and Forerunner, driving them to appointments, house showings, shopping, governmental offices, etc. That gives you a small grasp of the monumental task involved in such a move. Over the last week, we managed to purchase the wood they needed for shelving, set up their bank account, obtain a NIT number for them, and purchase a van. This morning I drove into Antigua, did a money transfer to pay for their new vehicle, and set-up the meeting so they could receive the vehicle. I last saw Ron driving his new purchase out of Antigua at around 11:30 this morning.

DSCF8017The van they purchased is actually one that we tried to buy back in January. Our friend, Esdras, was not ready to part with it at that point, but he made the decision to sell it last week. It is the same make as our van (pictured here), but is 4 years old, enabling them to get a better price. With this purchase I am able to get back to some sense of normalcy as they no longer are dependent upon me for their transportation. (Be careful out there, guys! You are not in Kansas [Ohio] any more!)

On Thursday I was able to get back into the villages again. Ali (our mechanic) was able to make the repairs on my Forerunner and get it back to me on Wednesday, so I was itching to get out. In addition to missing the families with which I work, I was also needing the therapy and release that such trips provide. So, we loaded up the van and my daughter and son, Krishauna and Jeremiah, along with the Ecklebarger’s oldest son, Bob, and our friend, Gerardo, and I headed back to Las Palmas and La Gomera.

One of the things that I realized at the end of that day is that I need to assign someone to be my photographer on these trips. I get involved in visiting and working and completely forget to take pictures. So, I only have one picture of the entire day.

IMG00826-20110901-1301This is Pedro and Victoria and their daughter (I cannot recall her name). We were visiting with Ponceano and working on his physical therapy when their daughter came over and asked if I could visit her father. He has been having breathing problems and she was concerned. So, I grabbed my medical backback and headed across the street to their home. When I listened to Pedro’s chest, I realized his lungs were full of fluid. I told them that they needed to get to the clinic and provided 50 quetzales to pay for their bus fare.

I also explained that both he and his wife were dehydrated. They were both complaining of headaches, dizziness, and fatigue, and when I did the pinch test their skin did not spring back. So I told them they needed to drink more water. Pedro proceeded to explain to me that water made him sick. Patiently, through Gerardo, I tried to explain that as long as they failed to drink more fluids they would continue to struggle with these symptoms. This is one of our big challenges…convincing people to drink more. Most of these villages lie at lower altitudes, so the temperatures are hotter and humidity is high. They sweat a lot when they drink, and they don’t like to sweat. So they drink little, and we hear a lot of complaints about headaches, dizziness, and fatigue.

While we were in town we visited Henri and made some adjustments on his new wheelchair. We also stopped in to see Reina, but she was out taking a long walk. (A great sign considering when we found her she could not stand up unassisted.)

We were also called to the home of a lady named Clara that I had visited back in July. She is on Lasix and struggles with swelling. We found her in bed and in a tremendous amount of pain. Her abdomen and legs were severely swollen. I also listened to her lungs and heard fluid. We gave her and her daughter-in-law money for a trip to the clinic and told them to go soon. They assured us they would go the very next day. Please pray for her.

DSCF7869Finally, we stopped in to see Pillar. I wrote about her last month and described her as the most malnourished person I had ever seen upright. I wish I could say that had changed, but it hadn’t. Her daughter and granddaughter told me that she was stronger since we provided the ensure and vitamins, but she was still a thin sheet of skin wrapped around bones. I asked her if she was eating, but she said that the over-the-counter medication she takes for pain makes her nauseous, so she has no appetite. When I questioned her, I realized that she was taking an analgesic that is noted to cause stomach problems. So, I provided her with one that is more gentle on her stomach.

At that point, I explained through Gerardo that if she did not start drinking and eating more she would die. My Spanish skills have come a long way, but it sure was nice to have Gerardo there who could use the nuances of the language to say it in a loving and concerned way. If I would have said it, it would have simple been, “If you don’t eat, you are going to die!” He, with the love of Christ, was able to express gentleness while communicating the life and death urgency of the instructions.

From there we went to La Gomera to drop off food for Jorge and his family. While we were there, I checked his bed sores and found his foot doing much better. The one on his buttocks, however, is worse. Thankfully he has an appointment with a wound specialist at Hermano Pedro this week. We gave them Q800 from a US sponsor for a scan of his spinal column that is scheduled for this week along with an extra Q100 for bus fare. Please pray that they will be able to help this handsome young man.

While we were at his house, I taught him and his siblings my newest version of the Guatemalan handshake…a hand slap followed by a fist bump followed by an explosion. The kids loved it and their mom and grandmother laughed hysterically, although I am not sure if they were laughing with me or at me.

I returned that evening both exhausted and renewed. As I stated earlier, these trips are therapeutic, and I definitely needed some therapy after the emotional demands of the previous 5 days.

Thanks again for all your prayers and support that make this ministry possible! We could not do this without you!

Good afternoon from San Antonio Aguas Calientes!

Daryl, Wanda, and the Crew