Other Mission News
SEPTEMBER 19th, 2018
Most of us don’t give clothing a thought except, of course, when the closet is too full, styles change too drastically, or our bodies have made adjustments on the plus or minus side and nothing we own fits anymore. But in many corners of the world clothing is much more than a matter of heading to the nearest shopping mall.
Tacloban in Leyte Province in the Philippines was devastated by a typhoon in 2013. The city was flattened. Under the best of circumstances many families in the area face daily challenges to support themselves. Under the worst of circumstances, like a devastating storm, the situation is aggravated to a greater degree. The economics of the area and the residual effects of natural disaster have left many families in great need. Schooling is often unaffordable, and the basics of clothing and shoes unattainable.
Veteran Fellowship missionaries to Japan, Rob and Kathryn Fleming, became involved with the need in Leyte through their children who were attending school in Manila. They made a connection with The Lighthouse, a church-based outreach to the children of the area that provides education, food, and outreach programs for the poor of Tacloban.
The majority of Japanese families usually consist of one child. Used clothing, shoes, and toys are normally thrown away as they are outgrown. The Hand-Me-Downs project became a means by which the Flemings could help Japanese families learn the basics of charity and recycling while providing The Lighthouse with practical help for the poor.
One large box (80 kg) can be shipped from Japan to the Philippines for $100 (CDN). There are currently boxes in storage awaiting the funding for shipping.
FAIR’s goal for this project is $10,000. This will provide a long-term solution for this ministry. We encourage you to get involved. One box would make a perfect project for a Sunday School class or small group. Visit the website at www.fellowship.ca/HandMeDowns for more information and to donate.
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Our mailing address is:
Fellowship Aid and International Relief
PO Box 457
Guelph, ON N1H 6K9
Attached is our latest prayer letter.
Thank you for your prayers to God for us.
Curtis and Diane
Click Below to Download and Print
Hey, what's up guys!
It's Keegan doing our update for May 4th. Today was are final day in Honduras.
We had an early morning to catch our flight to Texas at 12pm. It was bitter sweet leaving; we all wanted to stay and continue to help the kids, Tina and Melody. The things they went through, the pain they went through, we can never imagine. We weren't even in the van on are way to the airport for half an hour when Shawn got a message from the Home telling us how much they missed us!
The whole ride too the airport, we sent voice messages back and forth to each other. We safely got through airport security and were on the plane for around three hours. We arrived at are hotel at about 4:30pm and we then went out to eat at Papas BBQ. Their food there was monstrous such big portions. We then walked around for a couple hours. Shawn, Jay, Sandra, and I split up from the group to go to Walmart to pick up some stuff.
Well there we ran in to a very kind lady that wished us safe travels in God's name. When we got back to the hotel, we played cards for a little while and returned to our rooms where Curtis and Shawn read an email from Melody explaining more about how she felt about what we did at the Home for the kids, as well as for her. We then prayed for the kids Melody, Tina, and the friends we made along the way.
We then prepared for another early morning, to get the flight to Montreal. Over the course of our time in Honduras, I did many video updates that I hope to use to edit into one video to share with everyone. We all miss the kids and I definitely am going to try to get on the next team. I'm definitely going to see them all again. Well I've got to get some sleep now; we missed you all and are glad to be coming home even though we are going to miss the kids.
I hope God lets me go, once again!
See you all Sunday -- Keegan
Our last day at Casa Hogar started with a shopping trip. Tina dropped me off at school with some of the children so I could meet up with the team. The dentist next door spoke English and invited me inside to wait. I told her that we support and were here to help at the children's home and she told me she works at a children's home with her husband in another city.
After meeting up with the team we went to the souvenir shop of friends of our interpreter Nancy then to a local market. From there we made a few stops to pick up electrical and automotive parts for repairs at the home. Shopping for supplies is a very slow process so it was 1 before we got back to the children's home. Some of the children were home by then and clamoring for attention so of course we obliged!
Shawn and Nick went back to town for more needed supplies, Vicki and Madison installed new screens, Doug fixed the screen door to the patio and checked all the plumbing again to make sure all was finished and working, Jay and Keegan rearranged the laundry for the Tia's and then put it back again because it couldn't work with the power supply! So they helped clean up and spent time with the children. I was busy cleaning up our storage area and general gopher. Curtis was busy installing new LED lights and moving the old lights in the kitchen, where I was busy taking pics and selfies with some of the older girls and the Tia's who got Curtis to come down off the ladder to be in the pics with them. Shawn and Nick got back and the guys used the shop vac to suck up bat crap where it was rotting the boards in the ceiling and did what they could to fix and seal it. Would be good to find a way to fix the problem, bat crap is deadly!
We spent some time with the children doing a paint handprints to take back and handing out Barbies and toys that Anne C had sent. The girls and little boys were happy but the middle boys were a little disappointed. Next time we need to send some dinky's and small trucks!
When we had cleaned up our work for the day Curtis called the older kids together. He had felt Gods call that day to share his testimony. They were attentive as he shared his hurt and anger towards God and how God loved him through it and sent people into to his life to help heal him. And how God loves them even when they are angry with Him and they are special to Him and He wants to heal their hurts and be in their lives. Later Curtis shared how one of them came and thanked him for sharing as they also felt angry with God.
We spent the rest of the afternoon playing with the kids. The guys played a lot with them on the soccer field. They get so much use out of it and it's great to see their joy as they play with us!
As the afternoon wore on our hearts became heavier knowing it would soon be time to say goodbye. We all gathered in the living room as we spoke of Gods love to them and they spoke of Gods love to us and we prayed together. We gave out the Bible verse crafts from Open Arms which the children loved and they gave each of us hearts with hearts in them and Bible verses to represent our hearts together in God.
My nickname means grandmother! Which everyone called me! There were many hugs and many tears! It was so hard to leave.
We went directly to Pastor Luis's church where we were again blessed by their love for God and us and heard how they prayed for us ever since they heard we were coming!
After some supper we returned to the camp and packed for our early morning start. There we were blessed to meet Joshua the camp director and his parents who were visiting. They are missionaries in Mali, Africa. A great end to our day!
Thank you for all your prayers for us and the children and the care givers, Melody and Tina.
God has greatly blessed us this week and shown His love for us!
Sandra for the team
Hola church family!
Today our team continued maintenance on the children's home; painting, electrical work, fixing the generator and El Flaco got to clean bat poop. Most importantly there was snuggling, soccer and laughs! Vicki, Shawn and I also got to go into town to the hardware store with Melody! (I know that may not seem exciting but it's all exciting in Honduras plus we stopped for coffee, which was better than Starbucks!!) We also picked up 130lbs of coffee to fundraise so be excited for that!!
Melody is joining us for a supper of tallapia, potatoes and gazpacho, and our devotions! So far during supper we have seen (and Jay cruelfully caught) a gecko, countless June bugs and a centipede. Tomorrow is our last day with the kids and we are all prepared to say yes to another week! Although tomorrow is one day closer to seeing our families we will all be heartbroken as we leave a peice of ourselves here in Honduras.
Thank you all for your continued prayers!
- Madison Faber
Today started like all our other days, breakfast at 7:30, followed by our morning prayer and devotion. We then took off to the home to paint, fix electrical, and fix more plumbing. That's all stuff God has blessed us with having the skills and means to do. However we have learn very quickly what means the most to God, Love. The feeling of love as you walk into the home is supernatural. The kids crave your attention and make it very hard to get work done, but being conscious of there need for love is a calling we all possess. The whole group has identified the greater need is in time spent with the kids over the work that needs to be done. We balance that by allowing them to help and showing we care enough about them to teach them something about what we are doing. It seems every time a wrench come's out you have the same cast of characters hovering to watch and lend a hand.
Time spent with these kids is valuable to them more then anything else. It is through that God's love shines through us. At one point Curtis and I went to the hardware store for supplies and kids flowed into the vehicle to tag along, neither of us wanted to say no they couldn't come but Melodie quickly became the bad guy for us, good thing because I drove with Curtis... Let's just say it's interesting, we don't need to put the kids through that. We also celebrate all the April birthdays with a huge Oreo cake Melodie made. Guess who got a corner?... that's right El Flacko ("the skinny one"). The day wrapped up with cleaning and games on the soccer/basketball court. With volleyball and football (Canadian football)
When it was time to go the van flooded with kids not wanting us to go. We thank God everyday for the patience of our driver because we are always slow to leave and kids again swamped the vehicle not wanting us to go or to miss the chance to say goodbye.
When we got back to where we are staying we ate and quickly showered because we would be having a special guest for devotion, Melodie joined us for some laughs, some tears, and some songs. Devotion time is always emotional but this one was especially so.
I ask all at home to pray for wisdom and guidance for Melodie as she helps care for these kids as well as care for herself. It is only through God's strength she can do her job and our prayers are always needed for her and Tina.
Each member of our team is different and plays a role flawlessly, I thank God for each of them. Especially our leaders who have guided us over every stumbling block with ease. Please continue pray for all members of the home and us as we continue to not work, but simply love one another and all the members of the home, work is just the by-product of the love we share for these people and children.
Signed. The Thin One, Nicholas
Well just wait. I need to tell you something about the very end of day five.
As we were doing our nighttime devotions on the back deck of the building in which we were staying, the sky was alive as it has been every night with lightning and quaking thunder. Shawn asked us if we would go outside with him and run around in the rain after devos. Most of us said no, but Keegan and I accepted his invitation.
To our disappointment, the downpour had ceased by the time we had finished devotions. The few of us who were disappointed in that stood on the deck for a few minutes to see if the rain would pick up again.
"C'mon God we wanna run around", Shawn said in a childish tone.
Eventually we decided to take a step in Faith and go out in our swimsuits anyways. We started walking and praying for a few buckets of rain, but it didn't come. Shawn jokingly suggested that we climb up a ladder and stand on a platform so we'd be closer to God. We did. So we three amigos started singing any worship song about water that we could remember! The maintenence guy who was patrolling the camp (who speaks only Spanish) walked up to the base of the platform and started laughing at us. He said we were "moi loco." But eventually he was trying to sing and dance along with us!
After about an hour Shawn and I were standing in a light rain praising God for all he had given us on this trip. It was a long time after we went outside that it started to rain again. But if we would've gotten the rain immediately, we would've been inside and in bed before we had the chance to worship alongside a foreign brother. And we wouldn't have spent an hour and a half praising God for all his wonderful ways.
Now, for Day 6.
We arrived at the home around 9:00 a.m. this morning and got to work at our painting again. We accomplished a lot for one day despite the heat and the paint fumes that made us all feel a bit... tingly.
Once we finished working, we spent time playing soccer. I'm sure there are many other hilarious stories besides Curtis showing the children good Canadian sportsmanship and punching Nick in the eye and splitting his eyebrow, and Nick earning the nickname "El Flacko" (which means the thin one)
The best part of the day was when we had a bonfire at the home. I had the amazing privilege of playing music with our driver, Betuel's son, Isaac around the fire. Shawn told a story (With the help of our translator, Nancy) about when he, Aiden, and Shae were ice skating on a cloudy night and asked God to show them the stars. He told of how the stars were shown to them and how important childlike Faith is. During his story the thick clouds that covered the sky rolled back to reveal the moon. Curtis also spoke about how snowflakes are all different, just as we are unique and of how God has a significant purpose in our time on earth. during Shawn's closing prayer for God to reveal himself in an unexpected way, Keegan's phone beeped and a verse was there on his screen.
Now, there were two things that made that an undeniable answer to prayer. First, there was NO possibility of internet connection at the home. Yet, Keegan phone had a brief connection to an unknown Wi-Fi network!
Second, the verse was Philippians 2:13. I ask that you read through all of chapter 2 if you want to understand the significance of this if I haven't already convinced you.
Altogether, it has been a wonderful day. The Holy Spirit is using and blessing this team in unimaginable ways. Melody said to us that the older children and teens did not enjoy attending church, but they said that they would love it if it was like tonight around that campfire.
Thank you for your prayers. Please keep it up and be praying for each of us to have overflowing Zeal, Passion, Love, and above all a Heart after God's own.
We love you brothers and sisters,
It was a very busy day but it was a good day!
We got up , had breakfast, morning devotions then we were off to church where the children from the home go. We saw our friends there and made some new ones.
After church, we went for ice cream and to a market in town with Melodie and our driver Betuel.
We headed back to the camp for lunch then we picked up our translator Nancy, and our friend Luis and went to Omar’s coffee plantation. It was really cool! He showed us the roaster and the grinder. It smelled so good!!
The land where the coffee plants are was so cool to see. There were row and rows and rows coffee plants everywhere, big and small. We also stopped to see some banana trees which was interesting. We saw a bunch of bananas that was ripe and Jay really wanted to climb to get them. Omar said no because they had workers for that and he would get very dirty.
On the way down the hill from the coffee plantation Nick, Jay, Keegan, Madison, Vicki and Luis sat in the back of Omar’s truck. They say you don’t have a real Honduras experience until you ride in the back of a pick up truck.
Nancy invited us to go to her church with her tonight. It was the 3rd church that we’ve been to and we’ve had amazing experience at all of them! They are all so welcoming and loving. We may not understand the message because it’s in Spanish but we could definitely feel the love and God’s presence there.
After church we went to a local restaurant with Nancy, Betuel and Nancy’s pastor and his family to try baleadas, which is a tortilla with cheese and refried beans plus what we wanted to add for other toppings. They were delicious!!!
Night time devotions, worship and some time for prayer and we were ready for bed!
We’ve tried many times as a team to try to speak Spanish, sometimes it works but other times no one understand us... we have fun trying!!
Much love to everyone at FBC from the Honduras team and see you when we get home!!!
Hello All! (Email Received Sunday Morning - March 29th)
It's Doug with a day 3 update.
Please excuse my poor grammer and spelling. Tracey's not here to proof read.
The struggle is real! Work or play?
We enjoyed another good day at the children's home. We tried to stay a little more work focused and got a start on the painting. Everyone missed playing with the kids.
Curtis and Melodie started their morning running to town to get supplies. The rest of us started on the painting. Shawn mixed the paint up, Sandra, Jay, Keegan, & Nick did the edge work and Shawn, Vickie and Madison where busy with the rollers.
I tried to take care of some crack filling with Alex (one of the smaller boys) who was on my back and eager to help. Literally.
Jay was able to make an instrument today and it was a hit with the kids. He hopes to make more soon.
Nick was also able to look at the generator and install a new solenoid. He also did some maintenace and is waiting on some oil and we praying it will fire up.
While cleaning and painting we also discoverd most of the sinks where leaking and a toilet tank need attention. Curtis was able to get what we need and when we left today the leaks were gone.
We capped off the day at Los Ferro, a near by restaurant. We had a beautiful meal with beautiful people.
Thank you! For your prayers.
Please continue to pray for those that are sick with cold like symptoms. Pray that everyone gets a good night sleep and recharges for what's next, but more importantly pray for the workers at the home. Pray for the children let them feel appreciated and loved.