Honduras Missions

The Ritchie Family / Children's Lighthouse

Friday, January 22, 2016

Amen post....

Amen post. Just finished a hard week of medical evangelism with the Wallers and Truth for Today medical missions. They bring a group from the USA and we augment it with folks from our Local churches, giving medical care, glasses, dentistry and of course the gospel... each person receives personal attention.
Hundreds of people in four locations received care and a personal gospel witness. Of those 165 made a profession in Jesus Christ. It is a hard week expensive week, 4am mornings and often midnight nights but it is well worth the harvest...
That leaves a lot of follow up by our local churches. We are planning a larger scale outreach in June if the Lord allows. The airlines lost the luggage with meds and glasses for the group.
It arrive finally for the last day. But the Lord provided ways to keep moving forward and many were saved. Wonderful week to store up heavenly treasure....wonderful week with old friends and new. Melinda needed "security" while in Honduras. Marc and I provided what we could and put her in our shadow... but she preferred to see the sun shining... :)

Friday, January 8, 2016

Ending with a bang...

Ending the year with a bang. It has been a blessed year over all. Many trials, many storms passed but the "Son" always comes out and shines in the end... December was a hard month in many ways, yet blessing fell more abundantly than burdens. Ministering saints allowed Lisa to visit her father after a heart attack and care for her elderly parents.
Two weddings for 2 girls who have been part of our ministry since the beginning. Jr modified another missionary's Kia for more extreem use and also went to Nic with our evangelist and preached. The church building in Nic is going up.
They want us to return and help weld the roof. The classroom construction in St Teresa has begun. The well at the Lighthouse was repaired for much less than we were told and feared it would cost. But only after much labor from Jr and the boys building rigging making tools ect. They were finally able to extract it and do the needed repairs and the well was not as damaged as we thought... Another miracle. A supporting church sent their pastor, Pastor Kiefer and his wife and daughter to help with the wedding of Jenny. With their help it turned out wonderful in every way. They blessed in many ways even afterward. It was a needful visit.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Stop to pick the flowers...

Jenny married part 2 ..stopping to pick the flowers
Lots to share. First the well is up and running thanks to ministering saints and a lot of hard work from Jr. The Lighthouse has running drinkable water and is supplying the neighborhood again. Jr managed to fix it all much cheaper than we were told and feared it might cost. Still lots of money we didnt have, but not the mountain of cash we feared it would take. Prayers worked again and the Lord supplied all. Amen!

Jenny's wedding was simply beautiful in so many ways. The Lord's hand was seen in humility everywhere. From Jenny picking flowers from the side of the highway a few hours before the wedding. Add to it as we entered town she saw a stranger's house with perfect colored flowers. We stopped to ask if we could pay to pick some. The man answering the gate looks at Jenny and says "you are the american's daughter, the one marring Alberto"..."uhh yes," "take all the flowers you want and have a good wedding" Bring light to PROV 31:22-23 amen. The wedding came together because there were so many showing their love to Alberto and Jenny. A pastor and good friend brought his family just to perform the wedding, they have been praying for Jenny weekly for 10 years. He preach a perfect wedding sermon and service.
The night before Jenny came into my room crying, she lost her engagement ring(again). She had taken it off to wash clothes and feared it went down the underground drain. She had looked and looked to no avail. I said do you want it found? Yes papi. Lets look for it. As she started to leave I said not that way and instead we bowed to pray and ask the Lord. When finished I asked one of the other kids to go looked for it and where. But before they could start another child ran in with the ring. Jenny looks at me and smiles and says thank you Lord and thank you papi... amen. They wanted to go with Jr and Lourdes to Nicaragua to do an outreach for their honeymoon. I was able to work it out so not only could they serve the Lord on their honeymoon but Jr and
Lourdes could celebrate their aniversary as well and spend a couple of days on the beach there before returning. Several families bought fireworks to set off after the wedding and 1st of Jan. I bought a firecracker along the road with 1lb of powder...it was really really loud. Why does one buy a firecracker with one lbs of powder or a wedding... I was left alone for a while. Lisa is in the states the Girls (Lourdes, Jenny, Julie) were in the store getting food for the Lighthouse... and I was left alone in the parking lot. The bible says it is not good the man should be alone :) So I wandered off and saw a man selling fireworks along the road. I asked do you have loud ones? He runs to the back and brings out a homemade Honduran 16 inch long 4 inch round made from newspaper firecracker... and says it is real loud and real cheap... i looked around and saw no one saying no. Then he says the main sales pitch "es muy peligroso". uhh. SOLD!  What's a lone guy to do?.... so the wedding festivities began with a bang and several guest dropped their wedding cake... and the whole neighborhood came out to watch the rest....
jr finished the mods for the other missionary's kia and the arrived as he was bolting in the rack... amen
Wonderful day... thank you to all the ministering saints of our Lord. You have made a remarable year possible and stored up much treasure in heaven

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Jenny married...part 1

Married... Honduras requires couples to be married civil before they can marry in church. The "legalize" not unlike a licence in the USA only here it is binding before a preacher makes them say "I do". So we gathered all this morning to city hall Jenny and Alberto along with Josilyn and Hydle. We opened in prayer having the new husbands pray, then the fathers, then the pastor. Right in the middle of city hall praying in a circle. Then the official comes out and does the signing and kiss. He pushed Jenny and Alberto a bit trying for a big romantic kiss rather than the peck they did...
they would not, wanting to wait for the marriage in church before the Lord... fun to watch...They will make their vows in church Jan 1st with a visiting American pastor friend doing the service. He has prayed for Jenny for 10 years with his family. Until then Jenny and Alberto have chosen to continue to live apart to honor the Lord in their marriage.  Amen. In the photo below is Jenny looking up in her church wedding dress. Lisa took one of her 10 years ago in her first white dress in the exact pose. I used it in a video I made years ago and it is burned into my memory. I could not find it. A ministering saint sent me an old copy of our videos and I just happened to see it again... so I took a screen shot. God is always in the details. Jenny came in this morning very early while I was praying, we prayed and wept together for near an hour for the last time as my little girl because after today she legally is her husband's.
thank you Lord. As I got the receipt from the courthouse I turned to Alberto and said just like all the stores in Honduras, once you have the receipt in your hand... no refunds and handed it to him... good laughs...

Monday, December 7, 2015

as honduras turns

Still hauling water. Takes a couple of hours a day.  The local place we have been getting water from is growing tired of us already and has limited us now. Already dealing with diarrea and amoebas in the smaller kids. They are used to drinking from any water source... cannot do that now plus cannot clean quite the same as when there is abundant flowing water. Was finally able to buy a 10,000lbs chain hoist and try pulling the well up. Managed to drag it up 10 more feet but is binding on the casing. Not sure of destruction. Stopped for the night and had someone steal our pipe wrenches... feel like I am in a soap opra some times and the plot thickens...  the well drilling company came to send their camera down but could not until we remove the pump and piping. They said they could replace the casing and clean the well and rebuild well with a new pump for about $5000. Oh joy. They said it cost $125 per hour to run their rig with crew.. and need up to 20hours plus parts to do it... so we at least have a plan..just need provision,... still pulling the pump as of this writing. Had to wait to afford just the chain hoist... 5k is a long way off..

Went out Sat to help do a street outreach in a neighborhood. Set up for a movie and have our kids and teens from our closest church invite the neighbors. Usually a good response 50 to 400. Closer to 50 this time because we chose a night of a big soccer game, plus the annual big fair is in town. But they all heard the gospel. Just fishing for wild sown seeds.

Karen is healing and off the heavy pain meds and going to church. It will be middle of Jan to remove casts and pull pins.

New kia alt. went out again, but this time jr remembered one of our old bad alt. from 6 years ago that still had a good armature. So he dug it out and we swapped the parts to make it generate again...

Lisa still state side caring for her dad, doing ok still needs prayers too.

Weddings are soon upon us as will be Christmas. No plans as of yet on that front. Our school year is now starting as well....
Need lots of prayer as always

afternoon well update... pipe broke leaving the pump stuck half way up in the well with a straight pipe sticking up just under the water level broken... ie kind of worse case... need to  build another tool... more money and not sure will work...went to town to find things to build a tool. After talking to the drilling company they let me borrow $300 in pipe. So that is a savings... now to design a tool ti grab a pipe in a blind hole 60 feet underground...  a tomorrow task...




Friday, November 27, 2015

problems...

Jr has finished lifting another missionaries kia but wheels have not arrived yet so he put on our old ones to test drive it. Runs great. Still need to finish the rack and seating but it is sidelined for a time because of a more urgent problem. We had neighbors in the area who kept turning on the water out by the road and running our pump dry which burns up the pump. What we did not know until we tried to pull it is there is a problem in the casing. Either it broke and shifted  when we had an earthquake months back or the overheated water from the pump melted  the pvc casing... only needs 100 degree water which the pump could have done. So we have no good options. Best option is redrill an new well... this one took us 8 years and lots of money.
A new one will be about $25,000. Second option break off the pump let fall back down and use the top half of the well water. Problems are:
1...we do not know where the pump/pipe will break as we pull on it, might break high making well very shallow usable. Can use a backhoe to lift and break it.
2 breaks low and we end up with half a well. But we ran dry on the full well we will magnify that issue being shallower. Plus we have no idea how far up the damage continues in the casing is until we trial fit a new pump. A pump cost around $1000.
There are no cheap fixes and hauling water daily for a home for children is a full time job alone... limits all other ministry.  Karen is doing better, ministering saints saved the day and operation was paid for she will bed in bed with casts and pins for 3 month and need phy ther when done but should recover fully, amen!
Need prayer, wisdom, provision, because it is a bigger problem than we can do alone... thank you

Monday, November 16, 2015

one more thing...

Had one more person call on the Lord Sunday. Amen.
The retention wall in San Geranimo has been rebuilt and reinforced.
We got a late night message that Lisa's dad had a heart attack. That set a series of events into play. Ministering saints provided a way for Lisa to quickly return to the US and be with family. He is doing better but has many issues that cannot be  addressed. So she is helping her mom and dad for a time. Lots to do on the home front here. Two weddings and school restarts soon. Prep to teach in a couple of our churches, maybe put together a preachers meeting for our men. Plus Christmas, New Years and going to Nic to preach. And still maintain our "normal" house and ministry as well.
Have the wrecked kia painted and reassembled. Still need a bumper but it is drivable and looks ok for now, will make a front bumper when the other project below is done....
In case I was wasting a little time....We took on another project as well. A missionary in the north who runs an air ambulance service saw our kia. He asked if we could build his the same way to use in the moskitia where there are no paved roads. We said yes so he bought a new one Monday, drove it across the entire country and dropped it off wend. Once build and sent back, it will never see pavement again.
So we are raising it(ie making a lift kit) to fit bigger tires and wheels, lengthening the steering shaft, arranging to build new wheels, building a rack and seating system to facilitate any kind of load like blocks, motors, people, stretchers or coffins... If it is like here often several different cargos in same day... old school skills for me, but Jr is doing most of it. Weee. I was in a missions conference a long time ago at our church. The men had challenged each other to give the missionaries nice tools. Snapon wrenches, worm drive saws ect. Top quality stuff. As they were casting lots to who got what I overheard a very young missionary say to his
 wife, "I don't need tools I am going to preach, I'll just take a screwdriver." I thought he is not going to make it, he will need every tool on the table where he is going. I was right he lasted less than 6 months... a missionary wears many hats...
And one more thing. Pastor Renee came by today with a big bag of corn on the cob as a thank you to us for prayers. His wife's results came back neg for cancer. They are treating her in a different way. Prayers were heard... a big thank you to our ministering saints. The prayers were heard. Praise the Lord for His goodness...

one more thing again. We had a very good day all thing considered. So we thought. I almost posted as such. Till screams after supper. The kids wanted a quick round of hide and seek before I called them in. Karen climbed our mango tree in the dark to hide. The branch broke and she fell to the concrete from half way up.
Broke both ankles in 2 places each. She needs to be operated on to walk right. Sched for 6am to open her up and screw her together. Private clinic, not sure how much or how to pay for it but it can easily be 2-3000 even here... need some more prayers and miracles...need a wheelchair as well

Friday, November 6, 2015

Keep moving forward...

Still moving ahead. The retention wall repair for the San Geranimo church is going up thanks to help from ministering saints. The pastor's wife there is having exams for cancer, no results yet. Needs prayer, name is Clare.  Was able to find a headlight for the kia, just need to make a bumper and fix the door and cab corner and paint it all. Another mountain church is dealing with three possible funerals at same time. We are prepping for 2 weddings at Lighthouse property. Various gov officials might be attending Jenny's along with a local paper.  The industrial sewing machine that was donated is in the mountain. Our school year is over but will start up again in just a few weeks... One more trusted the Lord this Sunday. Several in our home have gotten sick over the past weeks, just the normal stuff. Need to visit the mountain churches more, teach more ect. Just never enough time or funds. Mostly the later... Have several prospective church plants. Just need labourers and funds...want to go into Nicaragua the first part of January teach and outreach with the church plants there. An evangelistic medical team will visit here the later part of Jan, should be a great blessing. Hard to captain the ship and paint the hull at the same time, need just the right conditions for the same guy to do both...wont happen in a storm or narrows or shallows...
Went to check on the church wall this morning and clutch went out on kia. Hyd cyl went out found an seal kit for a hyundai that would work and got it repaired while running...Why? It was hot and had kids with me in the airconditioning. Weee. Not what I hoped to do today.... yesterday fix the boys shower. Water would not shut off, cannot get replacement seals or even the same valve to rob parts. Option one,  chip out the concrete and tile make a big hole to repair. Option two,  add a valve to the top near shower head...money and time dictated option 2 for now... weee. Gotta do what you gotta do to keep moving forward...amen...keep us in prayer... thank you

Added ... Wall going up on the San Geranimo church retention wall repair... AND, the walls going up on our first Nic church. Lots still to do but building the walls continues... they want me to go in Feb for the first in building service.
Amen.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Little things...

Little things. Sometimes it is the little things that have the most.... It will be a long story about little things.. bare with me and you will be entertained.. and praise the Lord. Amen.
Alberto proposed to Jenny she said yes. That would be enough to say, but it is the details that make it sweet. Alberto asked me last Jan permission to seek Jenny's hand in marriage, he has won all hearts including mine by his walk in this. Well the day he opted to ask her to marry him was the 10 year  anniversary of me coming to Honduras and Jenny entering my life,.. to the day. All was set he had used a years savings to buy the ring. Actually it was his motorcycle funds and a change of priority as he won her heart and built a foundation for marriage. The rings were suppose to be ready for pick up. He got there having all plans in place.. Jenny on the way and I get a frantic call from Alberto.. rings not ready or available what should I do? I said quickly buy a cheap substitute(meeting at our mall) and do not show Jenny till after she says yes. He thought it was a great plan and bigger relief. So later on the "ring"(in spanish) aka ferris wheel, he proposed... she said yes. Then I get a text. "Papi the ring is plastic!! I texted back, did you already give an answer? ...she texted "yes". What was your answer? "Yes" again. "Well daughter a deal is a deal. Can't change your mind now. But maybe we need to talk to you both about finances because anyone who pays that much for a plastic ring is a bit gullible"... and it gets better. She comes home treasuring the the cheap plastic ring. She visits Alberto's mom the next day and it rains hard and floods the house. While helping clean she looses the plastic ring and comes home very sad... I think something horrible happened. And make it worse by laughing in relief when she finally does tell me. Funny how much and how fast we can place value on little things. To her relief the little sister finds it the next day. When the real ring comes in she tells him it must be done over because he did not get on a knee last time... So she gets two chances to turn him down. She is now wearing the real ring... and made me put the plastic one in our safe...little things.
Had one of our girls sad because the wood doll house she had broke. So a couple of nails and super glue... and a smile of a little girl in the Lighthouse is back in service. In case you ask what missionaries do, just little things,...lots and lots of little things.
Had one of our preachers cut his foot with a machete. Pack up meds before church and run to the mountain to care for him and make it back in time to pick up folks for church. Then on way home pray and give one of our church members $20 so she could test her sick little girl for hepA. (Positive) on meds now. Little things.
Still need to do a few other little things, we received two crates from the Usa with items collected. Some tools donated, trailer parts needed, clothes, and an industrial sewing machine for a mountain pastor. Haven't delivered it yet because of a lack of little paper things. For the same little things we have not been able to repair the San Geranimo church yet. Was able to get blocks and deliver them but need more materials. Cement, rebar ect.
Bigger things...because of ministering saints, we were able to purchase property for another church plant near the border. Our bible inst grads are working that area since the Drs visited back in Jan. They are also preaching/teaching bible in 3 public schools all grades every week... little big things.
Our Nic. preacher acquired another property in Nic and building materials and was lacking 1000 dollars in cement and rebar... which ministering saints provided. Little things...
And though we are always in need of little paper things we are also very much in need of a little thing called prayer always. Had a wreck in the new kia on way home last week. After a flat, then ac fan went out finished the work of the ministry, dropped of fan at electrician and headed home. Started raining hard as it grew dark. On a desolate stretch of highway I came up on three tractor trailers in the road. As I slowed to pass, the last truck also had the same idea forcing me off the side of the road. Then a lady came running out from in front of the truck right in front of me. Hit brakes hard to miss her and slide toward the ditch only to see her baby laying in the ditch at the last moment. Let off brakes to steer and just missed the baby, the lady and the truck...instinct given only by God's mercy and grace and His hand controlled all. All that happened was kia hit the bank and ruined about a $1000 worth of parts + some body work. Thankfully no one was hit. But the lady complained she hurt her back so I took them to the hospital. Three sisters in a dark raining highway stopping traffic begging with baby in a watery high grass ditch... At the hospital the one sister began to complain to everyone and tried to get the security to hold us. So I was forced to call police. X-rays showed no injuries. Strange thing is they took my licence and now I have a date with a judge on Tues...hmmm,  the picture is them the following day back in the road....had to dodge them again... little things.
Back to other little things. After Jenny said yes I began marriage counciling with both of them. To test the waters one night I opted to talk about a girl named Dinah in the bible and said a few things, then had Alberto read a few very selected verses. I just let his imagination wonder and ponder for a bit and connect the fake dots. When he finally understood that part of the story he turned white and the blood left his face. He actually said if its is biblical, for Jenny I will do it. I almost felt sorry for him for a moment...almost, then I was kind of impressed by the commitment.... before I let him off the hook and finished explaining the story...
Even after this... Jenny and Alberto's birthdays are just a day apart so they wanted to take parents out to dinner. That means me... Little things...
Yet the work of ministry does not stop for little things. Several more have trusted the Lord in the churches and are ready for baptism. We went with our city preacher to a new area in need of a church and did an outreach to test the waters. Went well. There are 1000 homes within a 5 min walk. Just need more little things to make all the big things happen....amen... one ministering saint buys an special alt to allow lights from kia.  Where? Australia...little things. Another provides funds to buy church plant property, another  food, another ships needs, another gives to buy building materials to build a church... little thing add up to big things and the interest for riches in eternity is unspeakable.

Ps update... went to the police station about the wreck. Our lawyer never showed but the Lord was there. After much talking...disagreeing. They threw out the report and handed me back my licence. Amen. Thank you Lord and thank you to your ministering praying saints. Now to fix the kia. Found parts needed but are on the other side of the country. Need to send them the money and get someone to put them on a  bus.

Friday, September 18, 2015

Building churches and wedding bells...

More expense added to a long month. Rains caused a retaining wall on the other side of the church to  fall. An adobe house in the same area fell on a little girl that goes to the church as well. They dug her out and thought they might amputate her leg but Dr we able to pin her all back together... they wall... it was amputated and we need to rebuild it before rain can damage the foundation of the church.
Also had a visitor from the north coast who runs an air ambulance. He wants to buy a kia and modify it like ours...so come to see who it was done. Maybe even have jr and I build it for him.

Not official yet but it looks like our fir
st lighthouse child Jenny will be getting married in Jan to one of our faithful church boys. They are both leaning toward full time ministry... lots to do yet lots of needs to make all happen. Need lots of wisdom and prayer. Also in Dec Omar's daughter Yosilyn will be getting married. After Omar's passing she came to me and asked permission in place of her father, later asked if I would give her away in Omars place... humbling...


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