Just days before torrential flooding hit Honduras, a mission group from Richmond County helped out a Honduran family in need.
Hamlet’s Second Baptist Mission Team of 12 members left on Oct.5 for southern Honduras, near Choluteca, where they constructed a 19-foot by 25-foot cinder-block house. They conducted Vacation Bible School and built relationships with the Honduran people.
Lead by team leader Trent Strickland, the mission team began planning for this trip in January. The congregation of Second Baptist, many individuals, and Christians from other churches and communities, contributed financially and donated baby blankets and clothes, crayons, baseball caps, sun shades, Spanish Bibles, gently-used clothing, soccer balls, shoes, flip-flops, jump ropes, T-shirts and other items.
“The outpouring of support from Second Baptist Church was quite substantial and no fund raising efforts were needed,” said Clara Strickland, team member. “Several local Hondurans volunteered to help construct the simple building. One of the major concerns each day was making sure each worker drank enough water (or other liquids) to prevent dehydration due to the intense 100-plus heat.”
The team stayed in the North Carolina Baptist Men’s Mission house in Choluteca, a town approximately 10 miles from the building site. Four women lived in the mission house, along with full-time missionaries, Mike and Ginger Greene from Richmond County, while the eight men lived in an adjoining bunkhouse.
The one-room house, built in a shaded area beside a Honduran church, was completed on the final day of planned construction, during a torrential rainfall that has continued and is now flooding many areas of the country, displacing families as homes are destroyed.
“It’s unbelievable,” said Strickland. “When we see the pictures on TV, we recognize some of those areas. We were actually going to the Pacific Ocean and we picked up the Honduran pastor on the way, and now his house and church are under four feet of water. I feel the good Lord got us out in time.”
Two Second Baptist members were invited to preach at local Honduran churches. Pastor Chris Hawks spoke on Oct. 9, at the New Life Baptist Church in the village of El Corrizo and Rev. Jason Moore spoke on Oct. 7 at Gethsemane Baptist Church in the village of Lagero Blanco, where last year’s Honduran Mission Trip Group, sponsored by Hamlet’s First Baptist, worshipped and taught three sessions of Vacation Bible School.
“We certainly are praying that God will give them the strength to get through this,” said Hawks. “The greatest part of it for me was to see how God works in the lives of the Honduran people. There is poverty in our country, but even the most impoverished person is still better off than those we have gotten to know.”
Hawks said he was astonished by how people in such poverty could still love the Lord and be joyful. He said he was thankful for being able to get to know the Hondurans and see how they live day to day.
“We went to minister to a group of people who didn’t have a house, and we built it. Rather than giving blessing, we received blessing from them. I think every person ought to visit another country. It really changes your perspective,” said Hawks.
Heather Hawks planned and led a three-session VBS for approximately 50 children who walked to the church. Frances Altman, Betty Lynn Warnock and Strickland assisted Hawks. Having no tables, the children used the pews in the church as tables to complete their VBS projects as they sat on the floor.
Other team members were O.W. Altman, Steve Davis, Allen Jordan, Mark Thurman and Cameron Yates.
— Staff Writer Dawn M. Kurry can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 43, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.