Luke 2:10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people."

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Calm Before the Crazy!

The past month has been relatively calm.  We haven't had too many short term groups so the IDC building team has spent time preparing for a very busy summer.  The calendar is jam packed from June 1 - September 1.  I will be busy prepping homes and building, in addition to making pre and post home visits.  Susie will be scheduled to cook every Monday and Tuesday for the mission teams during this time and the kids will be full swing in school until the year ends in October.

Since we haven't had many homes to build over the past few weeks, we have been making home visits and assessing their needs.  Recently, Luis and I were able to visit a family who received a home built by IDC about a year ago.  We were able to help counsel them through some personal issues and this morning I went back to add a water capture system.  This will enable them to use rain water in their water filtration system.  They'll have plenty of drinking and cooking water as rainy season has just begun!

Here are a few pictures taken this morning:

Looking down from the roof.

Homes are typically very close in rural villages.  Family helping family.

Had to include a selfie!

Installing a water capture system on the roof.

In Him,

Saturday, April 18, 2015

T-Shirt Sale

Mandy came home from working her tail off in Guatemala and immediately set up a fundraiser for us.   Thank you, friend!


I'm selling these to help fund the Townsend Family's second year working in Guatemala. They are available in adult sizes. Adult S-XXXL. XXL and larger should add $2 to the cost.  $25 shipped for the basic tee and $28 shipped for the blue Dolman (womens).  Message me ( to order and I'll let you know how to pay.  Thanks!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

We are Family!

We are probably the *luckiest* expats here!  My Aunt Betty Lee came in November, my Aunt Karen and Uncle Mike just left after visiting for three weeks and my parents have been here twice since we arrived 9 months ago.  In July, my sister and her family will visit with my parents!  So thankful.  My family rocks support.

On Saturday, we drove my Aunt Karen, Uncle Mike, Mom and Dad through the town of Pastores to show them some homes the IDC building ministry has built.

On Monday, my uncle and parents went with Jack to help build a home for a family of 8.  They have 6 children, 4 of which have special needs.  They were so grateful for their new home.  And I am so grateful my family was able to assist with this amazing ministry.

It is a very special gift to have our family visit us in Guatemala.  In addition to sharing this wonderful ministry, we get to enjoy walking all around this gorgeous town, playing cards, and visiting touristy destinations with them.  

Building the home! 

They worked extremely hard!  I am so proud of them!
My mom had the honor of giving the family their house keys. 

In this picture, my Aunt Karen is dying Easter eggs with the kids.  My aunt and uncle also brought a ton of goodies, which filled their Easter baskets.  They spoiled them!

Thank you, Uncle Mike and Aunt Karen for a very special visit.  We will miss you!

PS We have amazing friends, too!  Another awesome family is visiting in November and we can't wait to see them, as well!

Monday, April 6, 2015

20 Years Later...

When I was in high school, I had a teacher affectionately nicknamed, "Mr. C" for both history and IPLE, a Political Science class.  When I was graduating, he was retiring.  Early on in my senior year I told him I would be going to school in Wilmington, NC and he informed me that he and his new wife were moving to Wilmington, NC when he retired!  Craziness!

Life happened and we lost touch until Facebook came on the scene.

Thankfully we started chatting again and Mr. C became a huge encouragement for our mission in Guatemala, offering his support and prayers.  He came to our send off party and bought a tee shirt and told us he would wear it proudly.  He also paid 10 times the cost for it.

Recently, Mr. C sent me a private message asking me where he could send a check for a family to receive a home.  A home.  Mr. C and his beautiful wife, Risa, decided to put their own needs, their own desires, their own wants aside.  The result?  A family now has a home, a water filtration system, a stove, two windows and a door with a lock.

A father will not worry about leaving his family in an unsafe structure when he goes to work.  A mother will not worry about the disease infested, dirty water her family drinks.  As of this evening, 6 children will not have to share a bed with their parents.  And this adorable family now has their own stove.

If you would like to see exactly what $3000 does for a family, click here.  I have said it many times before, a home offers hope to a family, which extends down to generations to come.  When parents have a safe, clean home for their children, they can spend the money they were saving on sending their children to school.  School costs money here.  It's not free.  When a child goes to school, they have a future.

This is the family that has been abundantly blessed by Mr. and Mrs. C's generosity.  These pictures were taken just after handing them the keys to their new home.  Best moment ever.  This beautiful family of eight has hope and a future because of so many people like you, who have supported our ministry in Guatemala. 

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Palm Sunday 2015

Hosanna!  Save us, now! On Palm Sunday we celebrate the time when Jesus entered Jerusalem, the holy city.   A large multitude of people gathered to see the Messiah, spreading their cloaks on the ground before Him and waving palms to honor Him.  They may not have known his death was near but they certainly knew He was the one who came to save. 

This week we are celebrating Semana Santa, Holy Week, here in Guatemala.  It is simply amazing.  There is no denying the beauty of this country and the magnificent colors all around us.  Alfombras, which are carpets of flowers, fruit and colored sawdust decorate the streets by very talented people.  Processions, made up of ornate floats, walk through the city all day long, while musically gifted bands play on.  Every time I see an alfombra I think about the people lying down their cloaks and waving their palms as Jesus rode into town.  

I am in awe of the vibrant colors and the creative artistry all around me.  I am amazed at the crowds coming out to celebrate Holy week.  I am honored to worship here in this beautiful land as we prepare to observe the day Jesus rose from the grave. 

Yet I can't help but think the significance is lost.  I want to hug these people and let them know they don't need to have the most beautiful float to receive forgiveness.  They don't need to spend hours and hours working on their alfombra to have true repentance.  They don't need to place their special needs child in the front of the procession in order to be healed.  The work has already been done.  It is finished!  In one week we get to celebrate the Risen King! 

John 17:1-5
1These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son, that thy Son also may glorify thee: 2As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him. 3And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. 4I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do. 5And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Our First Family Team

Our first family team arrived two weeks ago and left yesterday. 

Marty, Mandy, Eli and Julie were a phenomenal help over the past two weeks.

This incredible family built three homes, served with Campos de Suenos, helped distribute 500 water filters, shopped for local families, spent time loving special needs children at Hermano Pedro, and so much more!  During the last few days of their stay, we were able to spend time in fellowship with one another, taste some wonderful Guatemalan food and visit this gorgeous country. 

Here are a few pictures from their stay:


Thank you, Rhodes family, for serving alongside us in Guatemala.  Your prayers and support over the past few years have been a huge encouragement to us.  And your visit was a gift.  Thank you, Lord, for this family who clearly has a heart to serve You!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Astrid's Week

Let me tell you about Astrid.  A week ago she had a three year old daughter and a very hard working husband.  They lived in a small, small home, perhaps even the size of a pantry in the US.  On Friday, she had a new baby girl.  On Wednesday, she came home from the hospital.  On Thursday, her family had a new home.  Her two babies have a safe place to live with a door that locks and a stove and clean water.  They have blankets, food and a very special place to call home.