Last Wednesday was a day many of us have been looking forward to with anxious eyes. Honduras officially installed its new president, Porfirio Lobo, as the new leader. The 62 year old businessman takes the reins after a turbulent 6 month ride by interim president Roberto Micheletti, who led the country during the exile of ex-president Mel Zelaya. International pressure on Honduras during this time was immense as Honduras endured economic sanctions and boycotts from countries who failed to recognize Micheletti as president. Zelaya was removed from office after trying to illegally change the Honduran Constitution to allow him to have a chance to run again for office. The Honduran constitution allows only 1 term of office for a president, whether it is for 1 day or for a full 4 year term. That part of the constitution is not allowed to be amended.
Although the inauguration did not receive a lot of fanfare worldwide, it went off without any problems and the transfer of power was completed in a very professional and dignified way. Tim and Mark were just a few of the many who where there for the inauguration and the president's inaugural ball (rumor has it that Mark was actually all dressed up in a suit!). With the new president in place and the political situation resolved (Zelaya was given official permission to leave the country to go to the Dominican Republic) a new chapter is about to be written. Lobo, from the conservative party, will hopefully bring Honduras back to the center of the political pendulum and restore assistance to the poor and needy of Honduras. And, just as importantly, financial aide will begin to return to the country and mission teams will once again arrive and work. The year-long layoff for most groups has put a huge strain on the poor and their ability to survive.
Plans for our trip to Honduras are progressing nicely. Actually, our trip is flying along at Mach 3! Things are happening so quickly that I am watching it all like Hans Solo watched the stars blur by when his Millennium Falcon jumped into hyper drive! The interest in this year's trip is like nothing I have ever seen. Since the initial information went out back in October, I have had more e-mails, phone calls, and Facebook messages than I have ever had for a trip. So, in case you haven't heard, the trip is officially full and a waiting list has been started. This is the first time I have ever had to cap the trip because of size limits, but even the Mission House (Villa Gracia) has limits to its capacity!
The team, including the waiting list, is now over 180. In order to run a mega team (any team reaching triple digits) we are going to take a new approach. Instead of running our team as 1 mega team, we are going to divide our team into two separate teams, the Alpha and Omega teams. Nathan will head up the Omega team and I will be in charge of the Alpha team. The teams will be equally divided by number and talent and will be run as 2 distinct teams. We will set up meal schedules for breakfast and dinner and will have separate morning devotionals. The evenings after dinner will allow the full team to mix and visit, along with time in the dorms. We will have a combined devo each night as well. I can only imagine what the singing will be like at night!!! By operating as 2 separate teams we will hopefully avoid downtime and will be able to keep everyone busy each day. But, this is going to take a lot of coordination and a lot of help with project leaders, construction crew chiefs, and multiple segundos.
The bulk of our work will be done in the Tegucigalpa area from the time of our arrival until the morning of July 7th. At that time we will divide into 2 groups. 1 team will travel to Choluteca to work in Timeteo's home village and the other will be going to a new area, Catacamas, where we will be doing work with a local congregation there. I will give you details on both of these works later as the details are hammered out. Both teams will return to Tegucigalpa the evening of the 9th and will spend the last couple of days there at a local hotel until we depart on the 11th. Tom Beach's team from South Carolina will arrive on the 9th and we are hoping to have a combined devo with them before we leave.
I will be posting another blog soon that will discuss supply collections and shipping plans for this summer. We have a lot of new groups coming on board this year and I will introduce them to you as well. I am so excited about all the things that are happening right now and I can assure you that God has great things in store for us this year! I hope you are excited and are praying about the trip. It will be here before you know it and this year is going to fly by... I mean, we are already in February!
This Friday is the deadline for the early bird registrations and deposits. After February 6th, applications need to have a $250.00 deposit check included (instead of the early bird $150 deposit). All checks need to be made payable to the Western Hills Church of Christ / Torch Missions 2010 with your name on the memo line. Trip balances are due the 1st week of June. Let me know if you have any questions, my email is email@example.com . RUE2B?
Esta usted listo para ser utilizado en una manera poderosa este verano?