NEWS FROM THE FRONT LINE…

EVERY OTHER YEAR WE SEND TEAMS FROM OUR CHURCH TO SERVE JESUS IN BRAZIL, UKRAINE, AND MEXICO.

 

JOLT Mexico Mission July 2016 – it’s almost time!!

July 17/18th
 
 

Hellooooooooo world,

Seattle taught us many things, one of them being to always check underneath your sheets before you crawl into your bed and another being to never check underneath the bed before you do go to sleep. But in all fairness it has been a great 3 days since we have left and we have all managed to make it to Mexico safely. I’m pretty excited because I have successfully made through both the American and Mexican border without giving them my passport. Yup, I thought the border guard took it and didn’t give it back but it turns out I never gave it to him, oops. My contagious smile and dashing looks must have completely caught them off guard, it’s a blessing and a curse. I guess you could say I’m successfully smuggled into 2 countries. Quite the accomplishment. San Diego was bright sunny and a good relaxing day to prepare us for the week to come.

 

Another day, another burn.

 

A couple of things are almost always guaranteed when down in Mexico, and one of those things is that you will not put on enough sunscreen to not get burnt. We stayed true to that fact today but with majority of the team redder than me I can happily say my Reid skin did not burn to the fullest of its ability. We spent most of our day at the job site playing, working, and getting to know the community we will be working in. After a few bent nails and a broken hammer we are happy about the progress made on the house we are building and by the looks of things we will need prayer for strength through the hot sun of a typical Mexico day. With a quick zip over to the grocery store for more sunscreen we will be ready to take on what tomorrow will bring us. Another guarantee when in Mexico is van quality, and with one van deciding to temporarily power down today we thank God for powering it back up and allowing us to make it to the job site. It was not a surprise to most of us as we have been travelling in it for over 7 hours and know that rattles and shakes like that do not come without fault. 

 

To our pleasant surprise the sleeping conditions (once cooled off) are quite enjoyable, although they did lack a few spiders. To make things right and sleep in true Mexico fashion we caught some spiders for our rooms tonight so we will be kept company by our eight legged friends. But in all seriousness Bill’s house has been amazing! It feels just like home and we are very thankful to have this nice place to stay. Thanks for all of your prayers in our travels and the continued prayers for us on the trip. We are having a muy bueno time and cannot wait to see what God has in store for this week. The early mornings, van rides, and sunburns have unified us and brought us together to spread God’s love.

 

Sincerely your favourite blogger,

      Neeks (Nicole Reid)
 
IMG_2137IMG_2124IMG_2214
 
July 19th
 
My name is nick spenst and today was a good day over all, started out with an amazing breakfast and then we headed to the work site. The kids looked very happy to see us, they even came and greeted us when they heard the vans. As the day went through the family gave us frozen juice to help cool us off which was great and really needed. After our cooling off break we were told the mother of the family was making us lunch. That made me realize that she and her family are really grateful for what we are doing for them. To me that takes a lot because for a family who has little I can imagine the cost of the food for them was not small. I am enjoying my time here in Mexico and I love that I was able to do this again, God is showing me new things every day and I’m glad I am able to get closer to him, I am also glad I am able to show Gods love to the people we are building for and to the neighbors around them, I really think we are making a difference and I glad I can be apart of it.
 
July 20th
 

Hello FamJam back in the Wack!

This morning, we woke up at 6:45 just in time for some delicious oatmeal and some very ripe bananas. After breakfast we left with our filled agua bottles and headed out to the job site. We had a lot to do today if we wanted to finish the house in time for tomorrow’s house dedication. We sheeted the roof and put up the inside walls and trim. Others made some more amigos in the dust fields behind the house playing soccer and giving many, many “capuchis” (piggy backs). When lunchtime rolled around, the family once again made us all some bean soft tacos and we munched them up hungrily. After lunch we were still a little hungry so we snuck into the van to grab some backup sandwiches. Little did we know, there was a little Mexican finger that we did not see. Reaching for the handle, Rachel, in ferocious anger, slammed the door shut onto poor little 5-year-old Jasmin’s finger, cutting it clean off her hand. (Jk, there were only a few tears, a bandaid, and little Jasmin was A-OK) After we had our fair share of sandwiches, we distributed the rest to the community. One little boy received the sandwich and instantly ripped it in half and tried to give it to Jon, who said, “No Gracias” And the boy eventually ate it. After working hard on the house some more, we cleaned up, ate, and scurried off to church in our Wednesday’s best. Finding our front row seats, we worshiped God in pure Espanol. We were able to understand most of the service as the Mission provided head sets in English. After church, we headed out to Thrifty Ice Cream. Sadly they were out of Minte chocolate, so we had to settle for the 25 other flavors. Here, we met up with the other group staying at the Heart Ministries base. They were all from Virginia buildin’ some houses n’ spredin’ the love of Jesus. We then went to find some sunscreen, and with Darren’s fine acting skills and my great Spanish knowledge, we found it. On the way back to Bill’s house, we missed our turn off and decided to go on an adventure instead. After being lost in the Baja of Mexicali with no van headlights and a popped tire, we finally made in back at 1:00 AM. However, the night was just beginning. After finding some dear slayers under our beds and some black widows outside, we managed to fall asleep in our 40 degree loft, and only one girl was bitten. (Don’t worry Arlene, she’s fine) We went on to wake up bright and early the next morning at 6:45, but that is another story for another day… To Be Continued…

            Yours truly,

                   Carly and Bethany.
 

July 21st

Hola Senors y Senoritas!!

            Sorry to all you Spanish speakers, we couldn’t figure out how to do the squiggly lines on top of the letters. This is Dani here, in Vicente Guerrero. If you’re reading this out loud, roll those Rs, people.

            We woke up right at 6:45 this morning, and the chefs served delicious hashbrown burritos fifteen minutes later. If you know me, you know that mornings are SO not my jam. I adopted a nickname for morning me: the Angry Chihuahua. Lorne…

            We finished getting ready to go, and left for another day of house building. Roofing, electrical, and furniture construction were the last things on the list to do. I decided that the safest thing for me to do was to get up on the roof and work there. Simon, Jon, Nahum and I put down the tar paper while Bethany, Jamie, Ashlee and Carly completed the very difficult task of making the beds. Nicole and Derek hand-crafted the countertop for the kitchen, meanwhile, Darren and Lorne were doing their best to avoid electrocution or setting the house on fire. Dad, you would be proud of their handiwork.

            Finally, after endlessly passing around the communal Gatorade bottle, hammering tacks into the rocky shingley papery stuff, we finished the roof. I shakily stepped down the ladder and looked around at the work that had been done. The door was being built, and our translator just arrived. After the soccer squad (the ones who weren’t building but playing soccer with the neighborhood kids) arrived we would hand out backpacks that were full of stuff. The kids were super grateful for the backpacks, and we were happy to hand them out.

            Next, the dedication. When we arrived back at the work site, the work was done! Nahum and I were somewhat prepared to give the dedication speech and Nick was excited to say the blessing. First up, yours truly. I presented the reason that we wanted to give them this gift: Jesus. Nahum took the stage..ehm..well..the dirt ground. He explained to the new residents that we were so thankful that we did what we did, and after Nick prayed, Rosario stepped forward and told us that he could not say in words how thankful he was. We handed them the keys, and ten minutes after they accepted their home, they gave us food. Good food.

            We got back to Bill’s house and formed an assembly line for food hamper supplies. Rice, beans, oil, toilet paper, sugar, and a few other…varieties.

            Later, we went to the Nuevo Vida, men’s rehabilitation for addictions. They totally destroyed us at soccer *ahem, football. For dinner we ate something pretty original. Tacos! If you’ve ever been told Mexico doesn’t serve genuine Mexican food, you’ve been deceived. Tacos, burritos, tamales, and BEANS. Lots and lots of beans. This has been our diet for the last few days in Mexico. Mango, papaya and cactus made their way into our menu too. And we’re not leaving til Sunday!

            Well, I can clearly see that many more Baja beauties await.

            Goodbye, fellow adventurers! Explorers! Couch potatoes!

Yours truly,

            Dani

P.S. enjoy your shower!
 
 
July 22nd

Dear amigos,

This morning we woke up to Mayra’s everyday call “It’s 7:45 girls”. After we ate our delicious pancakes, we headed out to the orphanage for a tour. The short tour ended with a taste of macadamia nuts from the orchard. We then went across the street to the bazar, where we had the chance to purchase our Mexican blankets, ponchos, backpacks and bracelets. We quickly found out that bracelets were “one dolla”. And that the bazar probably has no coconut freezes left. As we got back into our vans we handed the kids, selling bracelets, our leftover sandwiches from lunch. We then headed out to find our big cheeseburger on the side of the road, where we met up with Christina. She brought us to her house where we served food to the community with her family. Here we found out there really is a poor part of Vicente Guerrero. We were told to keep our valuables on us, and our vans locked. After lunch we distributed food hampers, hats, shirts, and bibles. From there we headed to the dump to hand out the rest of our food hampers and food. The first dump we went to we were greeted by a bunch of pigs, that were no longer pink. Four people got out of the van to serve the 5 people that lived here. Here we found out why you don’t eat the pork in Mexico. We then went to the second dump back in Vicente Guerrero. This dump was a lot larger, with about 25-30 people living here. We continued to give out the rest of our food out of the back of Paulino’s truck. Paulino is Christina’s husband who lived at the dump for about 15 years before accepting God into his life. He now continues coming to the dump regularly to give these men food and water.

After praying for Paulino at the dump, we left to go back to Bill’s house. The highlight of the drive back was when Josiah realized that he had previously drank about 12 bottles of water and it now needed to exit his body very quickly. On one of the bathroom breaks Rachel was slightly dillusional and ran into the boy’s washroom, surprising Josiah. Screaming and laughing while running out she successfully made it to the girl’s washroom. 100 bathroom breaks later, we made it back to Bill’s. Most of us were dry, but one was slightly wet. Here Peggy made us a delicious dinner of lasagna and garlic bread. We then did devotions and worship, to finish our day off with showers.

 

~Carl & Big Beth

 
July 23rd
 
After a pancake breakfast we got ready to drop off food hampers at previous house build locations and at Luis’s house. We were able to locate the houses from 2008, 2012, and 2014. Only for the 2008 house did we find someone home, but unfortunately it wasn’t Ishmael and Gabino. The people currently living there were actually in the old house located right beside the one we built and they said that Ishamel had been going to school in Ensenada, the last they knew. We still dropped of a food hamper for them. It was nice for me to see the 2008 house and it brought back some good memories. There was grass growing in the yard now and a few more trees as well. I am the only youth from the 2008 trip to have been today, and Lorne called me the lone survivor. Lorne, Darren, and Alyssa were leaders from that trip who were there so see it again as well.
 
Between previous house build stops, we swung by Luis’s house to drop off 25 food hampers. Those hampers weren’t for him and his family but were given so that he could give them to people he knew who needed help. We also gave him some money to buy a new water tank, because his current tank is too small. What he does with his wife is house people from the surrounding area who are struggling with certain issues until they can get back on their feet. Luis’s house often runs out of water when someone is over, so they really could use a bigger tank. Luis is the kind of guy who would take the money and give it away, so we asked Jamie (who came with us) to make sure that Luis would actually spend the money on the new water tank. Luis was very thankful for the food hampers and money and praised God.
 
After we stopped by the 2014 house, we went to a beach in San Quintin. This beach was close by unactive volcanoes. It was a bit of drive down a bumpy road, but when we got there, the van Lorne was driving had a problem. The tie rod broke, so Lorne took a look and just needed some tools to fix it. So Darren drove his van to get those tools, but his van got stuck in the sand only a very short distance away. Great. During this time the youth were already in the water, so Mayra called them over and Alyssa asked the youth to pray for the situation. We held hands and prayed Mexico style. Shortly after we prayed, a guy named Julio was there with the tools needed to fix the van, and Lorne got it fixed. It was a great opportunity for the youth to see how quickly God can answer prayer. And yes, we still had fun at the beach. The waves were great to play in.
 
The youth went for tacos for supper later that day and then went for ice cream. Bryce and I were invited by Jamie to a baseball game in Vincente Guerro. It was fun watching the hometown San Quintin Frositoes won 5-4.
 
Tomorrow we will get up early, have breakfast and head back to San Diego. Thanks for reading and praying for our group.
 
Sincerely,

Derek.

 

July 24th

This is your head honcho, bubu lubu, bricycle, (Bryce Waugh)
 
Everyone’s fav and fun leader will be taking you through the crazy and hectic day Sunday was! After a 6am wake up call and Ben getting an always enjoyable visit from our favorite felion friend it was time too go down the loft stairs for the final time and fill up on cereal! Once we finished eating it was time too clean up and pack the vans. One day ill conquer Mexico by bringing home less stuff then I came with but this trip will not be it. A quick stop at the base too fill up our waters, drop off our donated clothes and say goodbye and get bear hugs from our favorite Mexican Jamie Nicholls, then it was on the road again towards la boufadora (blowhole). Although the road was long and whinedy, yours truly managed too stay vomit free, but don’t worry Hoeppner clan it would soon claim its first victim. With everyone’s eyes glued too the shop strip upon arrival, only one thing remained on the mind of miss Carly Frose, “all I want is a picture with the tiger cub”. Alas no such triumph came as the exotic baby animal booth was no more. After more than half an hour had passed Simon had consumed 2 bags of churros by himself, but today was not his day to tango with the tilt-a-hurl. Once everyone had returned from their hour shopping spree, it was time too hit the road again along with many t-shirts, coffee mugs, soccer jerseys, and about 10 pairs of sunglasses. A quick stop at a gas station too empty bladders and switch up van seating, it was time for Josiah Hoeppner too take centre stage. Just over an hour into our second leg, an abrupt stop halted our progress and once the dust had settled, Josiah emerged from the van hunched over clasping a large Ziploc bag that used too contain oranges but now held enough liquid too relieve the San Quintin valley of its drought. But he shook it off like a true gentleman, dropped his puke bag behind a bush and we were back on our way with Josiah taking a much needed nap in the back with his new friend Gravol. No need too worry he is doing very well now, and thank goodness I was in the van behind him or I too would have been right next him on the road. Tacate border crossing was in our sights and after only a 1 ½hr wait apposed too the 5 hr it would’ve been in Tijuana it was back too good ole San Diego for an In n Out Burger feast. Is Bernie Sanders Canadian? My guess is no, but I assume those republican border guards aren’t big fans of his. #yinittowinit

 

After filling up with a 10,000 calorie meal, it was time for testimony sharing and communion done like never before in room 165 at the Days Inn, and boy were we in for a treat! Once a handful of us had shared, the Kleenex started flying, tears were in everyone’s eyes as some of the greatest life stories I have ever heard were shared and truly god was with us all. I am honored too be a leader in this group, these kids have come so far and have grown so close, this is truly a family! Once communion was finished and hugs were exchanged it was off too bed for the youngins while Derek helped me type this out, so if there are any spelling/grammar mistakes Dale, you can blame him.
 
All is well in Trumpland, and everyone is anxious too see their families on Tuesday but tomorrow is activity day so I best be getting my beauty sleep, we all know I can use every minute of it.
 
Seacrest Out , love the MM crew down south!

 

 

 

 

 
 
For past Mission Trip Blogs, click on the link below.