Family Mission Trip - March 2023
Tuesday, March 28
First thing every morning, we meet as a group on the patio, which overlooks the ocean. It’s amazing to start our day in the presence of God surrounded by His beautiful creation: palm trees swaying in the wind, birds diving into the water, and the sun beginning to shine. Today’s devotion was from Romans 12:12 and we were reminded to “Rejoice in hope; be patient in affliction; persevere in prayer.”
We are so thankful for the amazing meals that are prepared for us each day. Cheryl and Connie have travelled from Canada to work in the kitchen for the week, and they are keeping us well fed! This morning we ate breakfast quickly and loaded up the vans to head out to Camp John 3:16, which is run by Pastor Gama. Located an hour drive from the base, the camp is near a couple of small villages. We learned that many of the kids walk through the jungle from one of these small villages to get to the camp! After dividing into three teams, we began to work on some maintenance projects. Some members shovelled gravel to backfill a hole where a new cistern had been placed. A second team was working on painting one of the buildings. The weather and conditions here are hard on painted concrete, so the transformation was amazing! A third team worked on cleaning windows. The 37 degree days that we are having here make for some hot work days, but it is so encouraging to see both the local workers and members of our group working hard, without complaint!
At the camp, we were treated to an amazing meal of salbutes - similar to a taco, but with a homemade, deep-fried shell. After eating, Gama shared his redemption story: how he dedicated his life to following Jesus after a friend invited him to camp at the age of 17. Today, he is passionate about camp ministry and the long-term impact it has in helping kids come to know Jesus. God has given Gama a beautiful dream for this camp and it was a privilege to serve beside him this morning.
After a swim and siesta time and an early dinner, we headed out to our evening event: serving pancakes and ministering to people who were waiting outside the hospital in Merida. Many people wait outside the hospital for days as they try to access treatment or wait for family members who are in the hospital. Our team made and served the pancakes while a local team of translators interacted with the people and made meaningful connections. This is a regular Tuesday night activity for many of these volunteers and we were encouraged by their desire to share Jesus’ love with those who are hurting. While our team is here for just a short week, we are constantly thanking God for people we’ve met like Gama, Jorge, Rebecca, Jonathan, Joanne and Gary, who faithfully serve here long-term.
The A Family