Honduras Missions

The Ritchie Family / Children's Lighthouse

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Thief Chasing

Outreach on the mountain last night. Our evangelist preached till 8pm and several young folks trusted the LORD. Then a gospel movie till 10pm home 11:30pm.(no electric up there so all power is from kia or Generator) Our preacher has been there all week visiting and helping the pastor stengthen a work that had been sifted. It has been nothing but good reports. On a unction, outside the door of the church, I began talking with and counciling a teen girl. She was in rebellion with her folks and God. She learned what was true salvation. And in tears she reconciled and prayed with her parents. Her dad was overwhelmed in tears as they hugged....hmm
On the way home coming off the mountain overlooking the city lights, the kids with me were excited to see the shooting stars. Get home only to find power had just came back on(we had all the back up lighting up preaching), dinner ready and Lisa and the kids had been chasing off theives all evening....( 9years in and it is still the same as the first week here, Soul winning and thief chasing..often they are the same job :)


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Heavenly treasure

The week is over and the group of friends from America have left but not without leaving behind treasure for heaven. Many putting their faith in Christ, many seeing clearly. It has been a month of blessing, work and trials. A new kia provided but rushing to get it ready to do the work of ministry required. A week of late night welding to build a rack and seating and trailer hitch to move the coming group around. Paint still drying when they arrive. Many situations in the background to attend to while group is fighting spiritual wickedness out front. Even with a visiting group providing a great blessing, the regular things still have to get done, counciling, fixing broken things, buying food and gas ect. But the treasure put in heaven by such tasks and outreach will take an eternity to comprehend. 300+ souls cried out to God this week, 1200+ saw more clearly and the work of followup begins. This group was packed with old friends, several pastors who I hold in High regard, A missionary to the middle east who has become a great friend over the past couple of years, and a few new ones. It was hard to fellowship with the flow of needs before us but it was squeezed in as we could. If you are a chuch looking to support a missionary to the middle east you could do no better than J.P. Day and family, they are and will be an effective voice for our Saviour where there is often no other. If you are a church looking to support and effective ministy of harvesting Souls, Truthfortoday Medical missions will put abundant treasure in heaven on your behalf. Thank you to the churches for sharing your pastors, you have truly cream of the crop men who love the LORD and love all those he died for... Thank you to all the ministering Saints who made this months blessing come forth. The container, New kia, medial outreach and support...
Amen.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Life

Been quite the week so far. A 40 foot container of donations arrived, a new Kia was provided, and our multi church youth conference took place. A lot of work is an understatement. But blessing abounding as well. The container was filled with food, shoebox gifts, a frig, stove and a long awaited washing machine. Along with bibles and 2 million tracts... Should keep us busy a while. We took delivery of a new kia provided my ministering saints, and began modifying it to fit our needs as a people mover and ministry truck. Our first youth conference with more than 100 young people from 4 of our churches. They listen to more than 5 hours of preaching by our Bible institute students. Most of the lessons were on not following the worlds ways, proper relations and marrage. Strong stuff. Feed them lunch followed by a short game time, which were also life lessons/preaching of which they became the object lessons.  Taking them all back up the mountain left the old kia rear end complaining. Hopped in the new kia this morning to go to the river for baptisms from the campain in the other mountain. I was expecting 14 but it ended up as 28 believers entering the waters. One was a blind teen had I hiked in the mountain and gave a bed to her and led her to Christ... 4 years ago. One was a young man the pastor led to Christ more than a year ago but had not come to church or been faithful...He went at midnight pounding on the pastors door and begging him to pray with him and get right with God... Another, Angel the boy Pastor Santos took in after his parents died of aids. Then watch Pastor Ruis have the pastor's daughter wrap up his feet in plastic to keep the not so clean water out of his diabetic sores so he could baptise the new and old converts... Humbling to say....


the least. The new kia was broke in with a sermon preached from the bed and hauling kids for the Youth activity yesterday... amen!

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Psalms 37:23

 Tues-What a day... Mostly sitting around all day making calls...from a tire shop. Headed out this morning to do banking, pay bills, meet with pastors, and deal with government customs about a container that is in country. Opted to swing by the tire shop and have a noisy shock replaced and check the alignment... turned out to be alot worse. Got it on the alignment rack and found the right front spindle was broken. Only one bolt barely holding it all together. Had it broke at highway speed, nothing but bad and really bad news. Head first into someone or tumble down the road. I had Lisa do a late night run with it the night before for internet paperwork, yikes. Took it apart at the shop and began looking for parts. Found one in the capital for tomorrow. So for today we welded back together and were able to get home. Fixed Wen.

We have a wonderful blessing of a 40'container donated and shipped and is currently in customs awaiting payment paperwork ect. Been 3+ years since our last container. But our new government is so bent on collecting taxes on everything they put forth new rules and they want an an extreem amount for import taxes, and they are not letting tax exempts off the hook. Not a good situation. They want $7400 in taxes and fees exc. more than 2x what we were told before shipping. That is on top of the cost of shipping and collecting. We sent a lawyer to plead with Gov officials in the tax office, but to no avail. Pay up and your time is running out was the reply. Our wonderful ministering saints who sacrifice to collect and send it, are sacrificing yet again and seeking to cover the expense but it puts a very dark cloud whether it is worth doing it again. Dont get me wrong it is still worth the blessing, even at double the costs, but it makes it questionable who is willing. If you spend $7 to get a $40 blessing with just a little risk and alot of work, most people find it a great deal, but spend $14 to get a $40 blessing with the same risk and work, not as many takers. Bottom line is the ministry and poor here suffer and will miss out more in the future. These kind of donations are another avenue to gain help tools without affecting regular support. It has been much harder to grow the ministry in the last 3 years without the extra help. Bibles, tracts, food for the orphanage and poor. It is much harder to raise funds, to purchase here, that kind of volume verses what is donated and shipped... and oft times unavailable here. Hoping conditions change on this...one thing you can count on here, nothing stays the same... except the poor who always pay some how.
One of our pastors and his second man were out soulwinning in the mountain on his motorcycle. They went to a place they thought had many homes. After dumping over the bike and breaking the clutch handle and foot pegs they walked the rest of the way in, but only found 3 homes. They did their work and saw 2 come to Christ. On the hike back out they passed the home of an elderly lady they knew who was not a christian, she was the grandmother of a church member and had rebuffed them numerous times. Tired, muddy opted to just return to the motorcyle. As they got ready to leave the pastor could not find his phone. They returned up the path looking and found it in front of the elderly womans home. Figuring it was the LORD they went to witness to her and received a warm welcome and a soul who trusted Christ as saviour. Ps 37:23 They left rejoicing after finding that which was lost.

One of our 10 year old boys got burned. A big pot of soup was on the stove and one of the teen boys was asked to help move it to be served. As he turned he stumbled and dropped it, at the same time the young boy was going into the kitched(without permission) and let the dog in. The soup landed direcly on the dog and the boy fell into the hot mix on the floor and burned his back. Two trips to the Hospital. He will be ok but it may leave large scars on his arms and back, Eric is his name. Always in need of Prayer.
 Internet and phone communications have been bad as of late. Hoping it will improve when a new cell tower is finished between us and the city. Took the older teens out fishing in the river with one of our pastors. Been a long time but a fulfilled promise to one of them. Casting the net... amen.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Real hope

What makes a beautiful funeral? Is it all the flowers or nice funeral home, or is it the nice trimed cemetary with shaded seating. We had none of those. Or is it the testimony and hope in Christ shining bright in the family and the lost one. How many pastors see 20+ people come to a saving knowledge of Christ during their own child's funeral, with more than half while they preached? How many limit it to a few words rather than preach 5x to different crowds even late into the night? I can say without a doubt it is not the niceities surrounding a funeral that make it beautiful. It is the "way" that makes is beautiful, the hope of the family. The preaching of this same salvation to the neigbors that makes it so. Friends carrying the casket and lower it into the grave they labored hard all night to dig. Only to hear a grieving mother whisper "may I see her one last time?"... And without hesitation the men jump into the grave and lift the casket and hold it over their heads to allow a mother one last glimps of the body that housed their daughter and read the open bible on her. Watching our girls give cold water to 200+ brethren in sweltering heat. And seeing a grieving father comfort everyone else in his time of mourning... Yes a christian funeral is a beautiful thing to behold... because of hope.

Joy in tears...

Honduran funeral: Went and picked up food for the church to cook for the funeral(people there all day). As I drove back in they said they want you to preach. Uh ok. Open my bible to find a passage and get stopped... they want you to preach now. uh ok. Share what the LORD gives about the difference between the death of God's children and those who are not. Hope. I used the testimony of the pastor also how the early church grew because of the death of the saints. True christians meet death differently. There is joy in our tears. We read Psalms 116 and 1 Cor 15:53-58 and Phil 1:23 I had made an offer of salvation and saw hearts moving but then turned it over to the pastor, the father of Rixi. He was deep in prayer and a little unexpecting but jumped up and finished the preaching. 12 adults came forward for salvation... Amen. Keep in mind, A Honduran funeral most often it is the family that does everything. Preps the body, digs the hole, cooks the food...and in this case preaches his own daughter's funeral with a salvation message of hope...The picture our girls tookwas her younger sister leaning on the casket. There will be 4 times of preaching and she will be buried in the morning after we move her from the house to the church then to the cemetary... Not sure if the kia will be a bus or a hearse today..



Monday, May 12, 2014

Days in the life...and death

Prayer needed. Internet not working right hard to post anything
Days in the life... Chasing spiders, building walls, sealing holes, counciling and loving in deed. Rainy season has begun and we are playing catch up. Electric goes out daily as they fix all the lines. Dry season allows one to coast a bit and get other things done. Still repairing the wall at the church. Going to really hurt at the end of the month. Also had big holes in our roof that needed attending. Showed the boys what to do and sent them up (lighter). to fix. Roof tape, tar and young teen boys...make a big mess. We will see how it holds soon. Sat morning they run in with a bunch of taranculas. Three of about a dozen they found out by the laundry room. Can we keep um? ...Do you have an cage? uh no... then no. Put them back and wait till you have a cage for a dozen big hairy spiders.(not likely to happen) Drove to town and was waiting for someone and opted to wait near the soon to be new kia dealer. They are displaying cars there already. Pulled up to a new kia like ours and waited and looked. Our old one obviously was jealous, nervious or thinking it was time to finally escape to car heaven because after about 10 minutes it overheated and dumped all the water... Asked the car cleaner guy for his water and refilled and revived it... has not lost any since. Hmmm. Was called out to do counciling as well in the midst of it all, rare time when a humble spirt prevailed. Then got a call Sat night from Pastor Renee but had a bad connections and confused, and he said he would see me in the morning. Pastor Renee needs prayer. His oldest daugher was hit by a car. She was in the capital hospital and not sure if she was going to make it, or if they could save her leg. He sent his wife and other daughter to the hospital and he stayed to preach. He got a call in the middle of service saying she was dead, only to have them say moments later they revived her. Confusion and heartache. The hospital was not helping as they thought they should and all wanted to get her in to a pay clinic specialist care. I know this hospital it is a training facility and patients have a new doctor ever 4 hours. In our 2 weeks there never saw the same Doctor 2x. And the Drs hate to be questioned. I gave him all I could to move and care for her.
 Not sure if it will be enough and not sure how we are to get through the month, but no other way to obey 1John 3:16-18.
Mothers day went well. As I was waiting at the gate in the kia to go pick up folks a humming bird started tapping the windows. Cute and memorizing. Front, back sides then I saw a crow nearby so it was likely trying to hide. Lisa prepared nice gifts for moms and a dinner afterward. I was distracted dealing with Renee only to have a neighbor come over saying our cow was stuck in their fence. Grab 2 boys and send them to get the ox out of the ditch. Always in need of prayer
 Update as uploading...
Pastor Renee's daughter was hit by a car this weekend. The injuries did not seem that bad at first. It has been a time of turmoil and heartache. But we just learned Rixi Estela Sanches did not make it. She was 22 years old. He is the pastor of the church we are trying to rebuild the wall on. He is on a bus on the way back from the capital with her body to bury her here. Heartache upon heartache. So often we seem too little too late here... She did know the LORD.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

In Everything Give Thanks

Been a bit rough the last few weeks, sickness on sickness, fighting computers, electric outages, roof leaks ect. Being sick, hours fighting the computer, then the internet to post and electric going out while uploading, on multiple occasions, kind of takes the zeal out of wanting to post anything… Woke early yesterday with folks banging on our gate telling us the rain is washing away the new church building in San Gernanimo. Rush out to see. As I drive out the kia blows oil all over. Make it to the church only 4 miles and used 2 qts of oil. The front retaining wall fell exposing part of the foundation. Make calls try to get the ball rolling. Buy 2 gal($50) of oil to drive to town and fix kia. Bearing, seals and an hand full of money later, noon back on road pick up $500 in supplies and head back, need much more.
On the second trip to town for more blocks the exhaust lets go. Stop(while loaded) and have it welded only to find a manifold bolt broke too so it is still loud and have to drive with windows open because of exhaust fumes in the cab… repairs for tomorrow…
Church men have it cleaned up and almost ready to lay blocks by evening. Cover it with tarps and hope for no rain. As I drive home get a call from our ministry corporation lawyer. We are updating papers for the government requirements plus for the container coming and find something was not correct and must be redone and now has a $500 fine for being late. Try to post pics on internet and keeps going out. Give up go to bed and the rains begin hard and the power goes out and the roof leaks above my bed…. hmmm. In everything give thanks…. Now 3 am and electric back on and rains slowed. Dread seeing the church in a few hours. no confidence in the tarps…Funny thing these are not the things that stress me out… It is just time money and sweat… The LORD will provide as He always has.

Now a sweet true story. A while back one of our preachers, from a very poor mountain church, by chance met a small group from some of the larger member different denomination churches while making purchases in the city. When they asked him questions they were bemused by his answers and asked if he was a pastor. He replied yes. They then began to tell of some of their fundraisers in church how they raised x000s in different offerings. Finally asking what kind of offerings does His church take in. He replied  sometimes $3 sometimes $5, sometimes a chicken. They began to laugh and say God was not blessing his church... He then asked if they knew about salvation... Did they know where they would go when they died? Not a one could give a biblical reply, Some said if they are good enough, if God allows... if or maybe was as good as it got. He then shared that all the regular adults in his small poor church could answer that question with yes. And that was worth more than anything else and a much bigger, much richer blessing. He asked if they wanted to hear, but they scoffed. Strangely they asked him to preach to a group of preachers. Willing to preach the truth anywhere, he agreed... but was soon disapointed because they did not understand what preaching was. His prepared message was strong for preachers, but they had him preach on the corner outside of where they were meeting... He did but changed the message and led some passers by to the LORD... If you ask him if he would do it again... the answer would be,.. of course...
 

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Holy Week tropical

It has been an interesting week so far and more to come I am sure. Had two aniversary services in two churches in the mountains. One in the day time another at night a few days later under a red moon. Rush to fix kia leaks before Sunday. Begin blocking up the septic system in a church on Monday. Then Tuesday the preacher schedualed did not make it and the pastor was feeling ill so at the very last moment the third string batter was up,.. me. After the long drive up, they wanted to feed us. It is proper to accept when they are all waiting on you with food that is hot... considering the ladies carried coolers a couple of miles on their heads to feed you. As if that was not discomforting enough, what makes it real uncomfortable is,... only we eat. Everyone else just sits around us and watches us eat... Hungry people and children looking in the doorways and windows as well as those already gathering in the church, all watching us eat. We are the only entertainment at this point in a place without electric and all eyes are tuned into the local channel. When done we move to the new building. I saw we had a few visitors from other denominations and was led to a message. Why am I a baptist? The plan was preach, then a movie, then cut the huge cake Lisa made...  after eating around 5pm the kids helped set up lights off the kia inverter (no electric for miles here) and prepared for the movie, then song service with numerous specials and testimonies, then preach/teach. We are the only light on the mountain top. I would talk a while and ask shall I continue or start the movie? The reply was always continue and the response was good. By 10pm it was decided not to show a movie, they would have continued... but I told them I was done and to cut the cake... (Real reason? It has now been 8+ hours and no real bathroom and still 2 more hours to get to one.) Good thing there was no second floor and I was younger. Most had a long red moon night walk home... and ours was a long drive. The odd thing is I pulled a muscle in my leg preaching. As if I was like Billy Sunday or something... But all I was doing was returning to my seat... I am no longer getting old, I have arrived and staked out a claim. Hard to shift gears because of leg on ride home. Arrive home slide out of kia and legs dont work like I want, plop down I went. Grab a chair and use it as a walker and make my rounds then bed...Yeah I have full title to land in Oldsville.  I am just an old polar bear living in the tropics...Welcome to Honduras... during Holy week... Still more to come by Sunday. A sunrise service in one church and an evangelistic outreach at night in another...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Boys need supervision


Finally got power... all the outages did something to the substation. Strong winds knock out power and toppled 2 trees on the Children's Lighthouse property. The boys and church members helped clear them out of the way. Lenin had been cutting a limb about 15-20 feet up. He got tired of wacking more than half way through the thick part and "rested" by stepping higher up above the section he had been cutting and wacking a smaller limb with the machete... Boys need supervision... And before yelling for him to get down... take a photo... Gotta have priorities.. :)


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