Update from Bill Peace
Once again I have the opportunity to travel with a team (6 missionaries) from Saint Luke's Church on Hilton Head. We're flying this morning (Feb 5) from Savannah and should be in Tegucigalpa, the capital of Honduras, by early afternoon. Then we have a 2 hour drive to the children's home in Danli. At the home are 47 children -- well fed, clothed, sheltered, home schooled and learning about Jesus.
The home was established by Betsy Hake, a deeply committed Christian who for years walked the streets of Tegucigalpa trying to convert the prostitutes and drug addicted women to take Jesus as their Lord and Savior. The home was a safe place to clean up and learn some skills. Considering that Honduras has the highest murder rate in the world (8 million people -- 20 murders every day) she is a very brave and committed missionary.
In time she began getting the children from the prostitutes, abandoned children, and children no one wanted. For many of the children their parents were dead, mostly murdered or victims of drug overdoses. In some cases the care giver or grandparent would have the children (boys and girls) provide sex to men. Food for almost all children in Honduras is a real concern. The nation's poverty rate is over 70%. If you're poor you have nothing. They do not get welfare money or hot school lunches. Their medical care is almost non-existent. Cuba has sent over 100 doctors to help in the rural areas, but the shortage is great.
Honduras is just a mess as the most lucrative business is supplying drugs to America. I'm told 40 years ago, before Americans had such a high demand for illegal drugs, Honduras was a good and safe place for children to grow up. Now illegal drugs and dirty money have destroyed families and the government. The same thing has happened in Guatemala and Mexico and will do the same to America. Sadly the supply and demand for drugs in America is at an all time high. Just as tragic is the fact that almost every 12 year old knows where to buy drugs, but our police and government pretend to know nothing.
Three years ago the Peace Corps left Honduras (too dangerous) and have not returned. What's ironic is at the airport we will cross paths with missionary teams from all across America. They keep coming. All of the missionaries share the loving healing word of Jesus Christ and do so at some personal risk.
Once again our team will be doing maintenance and construction work. Saint Luke's and the Church Mouse are providing $5000 for the construction work. We do whatever we can to help. We also bring clothing. Tuesday was amazing as we loaded 7 suitcases with almost 350 pounds of clothing. The people at Saint Luke's are incredibly generous, as about 85% of the clothing was new and of excellent quality.
We do spend significant time with the children and the boys work side by side with us. Most speak English which makes it easy for me, as my 30 words of Spanish really do not go too far.
The children at the home are so happy to see us. Honduras is a beautiful country. The climate (80 degrees) is great and so is the food. Really so much to like. I value traveling with committed Christians and the work fits my skill sets.
You may want to visit the Jericho web site Jericho-min.org. Seems like every year Betsy has more children. Just 2 weeks ago Betsy took in a 10 year old girl who was begging for food on the streets and a 10 year old girl who was a victim of sexual assault. The need for financial support is large. I know Betsy prays a lot and somehow it works out. If you feel called to help please do. We all are so blessed.
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This blog has been created to keep you up-to-date on all of the things God is doing through the team He has sent to Honduras from St. Luke's Church, Hilton Head Island, SC. Sometimes it is difficult for the team to send information to us due to limited access to the Internet. Be assured that all of the latest news will be posted as soon as it is received. We ask that you please keep this mission team in your prayers and be sure to post your comments of encouragement when you feel led.