A Christian Mission In Guatemala
We were a weary but thankful group of missionaries that stepped off the plane last week after 11 days in Guatemala. Without telling the full story of our trip, I can say that the beauty of the country and the resilience of its people impressed me. We stayed first in Antigua, a town that has kept its Spanish colonial character, then at the home of Rudy Angel and Mayra Merida in San Sebastian, and finally at Lake Atitlan near Agua Escondida, hosted by Dr. Will and Diane Boegel (formerly St. Jude’s parishioners).
While staying at Rudy and Mayra’s, we spent time meeting with the full parish council of the Union de las Aldeas Corpus Christi, then with some of the individual church communities – Serchil, Canoe de las Piedras, Canaque, Barancas, and Ixcamal. This year we were blessed to take part in a field day designed for the children who receive therapy through A Mi Rey, a new foundation that Rudy and Mayra established to help families with children who have disabilities receive therapy closer to home. We met with Seres, a youth empowerment organization, at Ulew, their demonstration farm near the volcano Fuego. We also learned about Dr. Will’s many ministries through Opal House.
Mission work outside of the United States is a great perspective-builder. We sometimes forget how easy it is to accomplish our goals here. We sometimes forget what deep poverty looks like. St. John the Baptist’s projects continue to make a difference in the lives of the people we visited – clean water, secure homes, stoves that vent outside of homes. I felt blessed to be able to meet with our brothers and sisters at our sister parish and appreciate the opportunity you have afforded me to do so.
Kathy Wickward for Fr. Bill