Monday, February 23, 2015

Mega Puente sobre Rio Mejocote. Very large bridge over the Mejocote River.



I saw this fancy color brochure sitting on Allen's desk the other day . . . there's our bridge project, front and center! Just thought I'd share it with you, for fun!

In case you can't read Spanish, there is a list of people and agencies who contributed to the project, and the value of their donations. It also says that this project benefits the development of the municipalities of Las Flores, San Pedro Copan, Talgua, and Gracias Lempira. 

Wilfredo Caceres (top left corner) is the alcalde (mayor) we worked with in a government/ministry partnership. 

Friday, February 6, 2015

Would You Sponsor Campuca, for $16 per month?

You've seen these child sponsorship pleas before. You probably think Campuca is the name of . . . 
this sweet young girl or this adorable little guy. 

But no . . . Campuca is the name of the village where they live. 

When someone sponsors "Campuca" through our feeding program, for $16 each month, they won't be sponsoring just one child. They will be sponsoring the entire feeding center in the village of Campuca - approximately 70 children!




Seems impossible, doesn't it? But through networking with other ministries and volunteers, both in the US and in Honduras, this is the amount we need to raise, each month, to continue the feeding program in this village.

The Campuca center is run by Dionisio Pineda, one of our very favorite local pastors. Pastor Dionisio grew up in Campuca and he knows and loves this village in a way no one from the outside ever really could. The feeding program is run as a ministry of his church there, and is staffed by himself and volunteers from his congregation and community - no salaries are involved. In addition to receiving nutritious meals twice each week, the children become a part of a network of caring Christians in their village. 




We're delighted to be a part of Pastor Dionisio's outreach to the village of Campuca. Perhaps YOU would like to help with this wonderful work, as well? Our ministry currently supports over 120 feeding centers, of various sizes, in Western Honduras. Individuals have been donating to the feeding program as a whole, but we have just begun to set up the sponsorship program, so very few centers have sponsors as of yet. Contact us to talk about sponsoring a village feeding center yourself - trish @ sowers4pastors.com!!!



And just for fun . . . here's a random glimpse of what it looks like, when you show up at the Campuca center with a video camera:


To donate to our feeding center program:

To Donate by Mail, send checks to:

The Foundation
PO Box 560233
Orlando, Florida 32856-0233

- Make check payable to "The Foundation"   
- Be sure to write "preferenced for Sowers Ministry - feeding program" on an enclosed paper 

To Donate Online:

Click on THIS LINK to donate online using credit card, debit card, or automatic monthly donations from your bank account. Make sure that you choose "Missionary Support" from the drop down menu, and type in "Sowers Ministry - feeding program" in the box requesting "additional specifics on how to use the gift."

If additional instructions or information are needed for donating online, 
please don't hesitate to call The Foundation for Missions, at 407-730-3364.


Thank you so much for being a part of this ministry!!!

Monday, February 2, 2015

Christian Radio Station Project, Part 2

We actually helped the local radio station with three different projects. The first project, helping build a residence for a full-time watchman, has already been explained, in Part 1.

The equipment to broadcast the radio programs needs to be kept cool, which is challenging and expensive during some parts of the year here! Allen and Russell looked into economical solutions for this problem. 






We arranged to have insulation installed in the ceiling of the radio station building. This may seem like a no-brainer to our US friends, but insulation is rarely used in buildings here! Hopefully this will help keep the equipment cool enough, and decrease the need for costly air conditioning. 

The final project was on the radio station property, but not directly for the radio station. Shannon wanted to install a large fish pond, to increase the sustainability of his ministry (similar to what we're doing by planting coffee). Some of the fish harvested from the pond will be sold, and some will be used directly in Shannon's feeding ministry.

The first step in the process was to dig the holes! Russell acted as the contractor/supervisor for this project, hiring the bull dozer and operator, and making sure that the work was done in a timely and cost effective manner, and that Shannon ended up with what was needed, in the right place! 







I want you to know that, although I've referred to this as "a project we've been helping with," in fact, this was Russell's project. Allen and I were involved here and there, but Russell was in charge.

As Allen and I get to the stage where we are starting to talk about what we will do when we're too old to continue ministering as we have been, it's such a blessing to know that two of our children, and their spouses, are already committed to carrying on the work of spreading the good news here in Honduras! 

Monday, January 26, 2015

Catching up on stuff . . . Christian Radio Station Project, Part 1

Here's a report on a project we've been helping with for several months - I just haven't posted about it yet!

If you follow our ministry in detail, I'm sure you know that we don't run a Christian radio station, LOL. However, in the past year we have been pleased to have several opportunities to use our construction skills to help other missionaries with needed building projects for their ministries. It's fun to be a part of a type of ministry we wouldn't likely do on our own, and to be a blessing to those missionaries who don't have the same construction skills and experience we do. You may recall the small bridge we constructed (with help and funds from a visiting team) for an orphanage in another part of Honduras last summer. This time, we partnered with a local missionary, just a few miles down the road from us . . .  AND (here's a teaser for you) . . . there's another project in the works which might have Allen and Russell traveling to build a bridge in Haiti in the next year or so, for a ministry there!

But now . . . the radio station project!

A Christian radio station was started in our area about 4-5 years ago. Currently, a missionary from Texas, Shannon Hopkins, is directing the station. Shannon, like us, has multiple ministries going, including this radio station, a feeding program, and working as the chaplain at the bilingual school Ben is now attending.

There was a need for housing for a watchman at the radio station property. Shannon asked Russell to oversee this project. Like the bridge we helped with at the orphanage, a team from the US raised the funds for the materials, and came to work alongside our crew for a week during the actual building process.

Below is Boo's photo chronicle of this project, as the house for the watchman was built. Since there are so many photos, the rest of the work we did at the radio station will have to be included in a "part 2" post. 





































Wednesday, January 21, 2015

My HOUSE! My ROOF!

Before you know it, we're going to have a ROOF on our new house! I'm so excited! The men have worked hard on this house, but only during the lulls between other, ministry-related construction projects, so it's been a slow process. We've been living on the property, in our bodega/warehouse, for five and a half years now  - it really is time for us to have a house, and amenities like interior walls!

The lumber for the roof was purchased back in August of last year, and has been sitting out drying (and getting rained on, and drying again) all this time.


Off and on, when they've had time over the past couple of months, the men have worked on planing the rough lumber. Once a large enough pile of planed boards was ready, they started staining them.




Gradually we are amassing a pile of dried, planed, bug-treated, stained boards. These will be the rafters of our roof, and will be visible from inside the house, as part of the ceiling.



The photo below is the ceiling of the "team house". . . which is similar to the ceiling which will be in our home, except that we're planning to whitewash the flat boards, and just have the support beams stained. 


The house will have porches in front and back, so we have wooden posts for porch roof supports:



If you're good with your imagination, you can look at these photos of the house, and imagine what it will look like with a ROOF and covered porches.

Back porch-to-be
Front of house (porch will be on the left)

So, there you go! A ROOF in the making!!!!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Can you help us with this problem, RIGHT AWAY????? It's (almost) URGENT!


I hate to use the word "urgent" in anything I post, because, after our kidnapping situation, people might see that word and think that danger is involved. I'll reserve the word "urgent" for when I need you to drop everything and pray immediately, okay? Meanwhile, I'll go with VERY IMPORTANT AND TIME SENSITIVE, for this post. How's that?

This is a VERY IMPORTANT AND TIME SENSITIVE POST!!!! Please read it right away, before we're OUT of time!!!




In addition to filling the annual shipping container with donations, we also have to receive permission from the government to import the container and contents duty-free. This year it was MUCH harder and took MUCH longer to get the duty-free situation in hand. That's why (in case you haven't already heard) the container hasn't shipped yet. 

We received the preliminary permission this week, and we'll be shipping before the end of January . . .  but there's a hitch . . . . we will not be allowed to ship the huge spools of cable, which have been collected for us to use in building bridges here, in this particular container. We expect to be able to ship them in the future, just not this time.

So, we have permission to ship the container, but with the spools removed we are back to having EMPTY SPACE TO FILL! And those spools are huge, so it is a large amount of space!


Oh my! We DO NOT like to pay to ship EMPTY SPACE! Noooooooooooo!



So, my request is as follows: Can you help us fill the empty space in this container, in the next TEN DAYS???????? That's how long we have for this!



Ways you can help are listed below:

- if you live in the MD, northern VA, DC, and southern PA areas, you could possibly collect items and deliver them to Thurmont or Walkersville Maryland. I will list the delivery locations below, but you MUST call to make sure that someone will be there at the time you deliver. Allen wanted me to mention that he has asked, in the past, at Salvation Army locations, and they have been willing to donate items if you tell them that they are going to be put into a missionary container. Just an idea, if you have a place near you!

7047 Blue Mountain Road
Thurmont, MD

(301)-271-4896

and

Fredericktowne Baptist Church

8645 Biggs Ford Road 
Walkersville, MD 
(301) 898-8600 



- if you do not live locally to the connection sites, or you don't have items to donate or time to deliver things, you can still help. There is still (barely) enough time to purchase items on Amazon and have them delivered by the time the container ships. We never have enough school supplies, backpacks, small gifts for men (wallets, pocket knives, ties, socks, etc). All of the other items listed in the linked post can also still be sent . . . they will NOT go to waste!

If you are shipping donations, use this address:

Gifts for Gracias c/o Jim Cofer

7047 Blue Mountain Road
Thurmont, MD 21788

Can you help with this? We would be SO GRATEFUL! I think you all know how much we abhor wasting donated funds, and we are just finding ourselves backed into a situation which may force us to be inefficient with money - and none of us want that!!!!

On the chance that anyone here is completely unfamiliar with the Gifts for Gracias project . . . here is a link that will give you all of the details: Gifts for Gracias: See What We See

From the Sowers family, I say:




And from the actual gift recipients, I pass this along: