Wow 5 weeks!
*March mission team:* Kelly & Dave departed bright & early this past Tuesday morning (3/15). Their first flight was delayed 2 hrs which was a blessing in disguise…it got them on a direct flight(vs another connecting flight in Ohio) to MN and even arrived home earlier than originally scheduled! It was encouraging to be told by Kelly when she attended Wednesday evening activities at First Baptist Church how many people told her they are praying for Recycled Lives, for me & Brad & our family. I definitely feel the prayer covering. Thank you so much!
It was a wonderful 2 weeks serving alongside Kelly, Dave & Brad. We experienced a lot & ministered well together.
Here are the highlights:
*the team played baseball for hours & served over 100 plates of the local favorite meal: rice, tortillas and beans in San Gabriel (community surrounding a garbage dump )
*The team spent an evening popping 16 batches of top secret kettlecorn (60 treat bags) and provided a movie activity with the kids and moms in San Gabriel another day. The kids enjoyed a dinosaur cartoon movie & being loved on by the team
*the team attended a weekend prayer retreat and learned more about spiritual warfare and battling in prayer. We prayed for the ministries of Recycled Lives and for the 7 spheres of influence for the communities we are actively working to fight the grips of poverty.
*we built a 12×16 foot home with an attached sheltered kitchen with cooking stove for Miriam, Jose (7), Gabriella (3 1/2) and Daniella (6 months). It was 5 hard days of labor but it was amazing, sore backs and all! Sponsoring a home like this costs around $3,000 for the materials, labor & transportation. Any amount donated can help the next family receive a home!
*the team performed the Recycled Lives’ monthly food distribution for 130 families. There is consistently at least 10 or more families that come every month in hopes that there will be extra food. Some months we have a few extra packages, sometimes not. Would you consider sponsoring a year of food for these families so we can add them on the list? It would cost $450 ($38/mo). We want to add all 10 families at once to be fair and also need a commitment to help for at least a year. (Changing quantities of food purchased each month poses problems with our food distributor/order and also with the families as we only add families to the list when we can promise consistent help for the year. Please let us know if you can help with this need.
*following the food distribution the team enjoyed serving a hotdog BBQ with the San Gabriel community. It was a blast!
*on sunday we swam in a sea of people while spending a day in downtown Antigua taking in the craziness of 1,000,000 people (seriously) watching a holy procession which is a parade with one very large float the size of a large boat. It is carried by 100 persons wearing purple and white tunics, one block at a time before switching to another 100 people. People make alfombras in the streets along the procession route (they are carpets of various items such as sawdust, colored sand, pine bedding, flowers, fruits or veggies.) It is very beautiful and also a very interesting tradition.
*Clinic and Activity Center*:
We are in awe & praising God that a local Guatemalan cement company donated 240 sacks of cement for the construction of the clinic. This is a huge thing for a company in Guatemala to make such a donation!!! God is blessing this project one beautiful step at a time! Please continue to lift this need up in prayer.
Brad and I began the construction of another home in Alotenango Guatemala on Wednesday (3/15). We expect the home to take 4 to 5 days and will take the weekend off of building to give ourselves & the workers the weekend off from the heavy labor. The home construction has been very different as it is on a very narrow strip of land for a family of 7. Please pray for us as we work in tight quarters and create the home as we go as it is on a “pie shaped” piece of land from 8 feet wide in front to 6 feet wide in back by less than 30 feet long. There will be an area in front of the house where we will create a covered kitchen/storage area and toilet. It is going to be challenging but we are confident we will be blessed as we work! Please pray for the family to see the value of hard work and be released from feelings of helplessness and dependence upon the help of others.
*for all persons suffering throughout the world that lack physical resources but most importantly that do not know the saving relationship available through Jesus Christ. That during this holy week we can shine even brighter as we serve.
*for the families we assist to not only know the comfort of shelter, water & electricity but the comfort of their Savior Jesus
*for Kelly and Dave as they adjust to returning home and process their experience.
*for Brad and I as we construct another home and prepare to minister over holy week to the communities God calls us to
*for support for additional homes to be built for the long list of families that need them . 2 homes could be constructed each month if we had the funds.
*for our family back home, for care to be found for our Grandson Leon. *****PRAISE REPORT: Brad and I were baptized on a Palm Sunday 13 years ago, our daughter Jordon felt the Holy Spirit call her to be baptized while attending Palm Sunday service this past Sunday!!!! I cried with joy when receiving this exciting news! Thank you so much to those of you that thought of recording her testimony and baptism and sending it for Brad and I to enjoy seeing and hearing! (we will view the videos that have been sent as soon as decent internet is available!)
*for Brad and I to continue to make decisions together in God’s will for our future ministry in Guatemala as a couple.
*for me to continue to learn and be able to speak spanish so I may minister more directly to the people I have been called to serve
Thanks for all of your love and support.
🙂 Shawn Johnson
Founder and Executive Director