On the coffee farm, they are still harvesting and drying coffee. The damp seasonal weather has lasted longer than it usually lasts and that is doing nothing to speed the drying process. Currently, that process means laying the beans out on huge concrete patios. Some of the crew turns the beans with large wooden hoes throughout the day. This is a special skill because the rows need to be perfectly straight to turn every bean. This method of drying damages the beans by scratching them a little with every turn, which lowers the value. Who knew? Plus, the men have to bring the beans in at night and put them back out in the morning. It’s tedious work with all of the excitement of tossing a single juggling ball back and forth.
There is a potential answer to some of this coffee bean monotony, which involves constructing a solar drying building. Think of a greenhouse full of trays of coffee beans and you get a general idea. Sowers4Pastors is in the budgeting and planning stage for this improvement to the coffee farm.
Containers & Teams
They are also working on organizing all of the stuff from the Florida container. The Maryland container is currently in port and Allen is hopeful that it will arrive in Gracias within a week. This is good because there are teams scheduled to begin arriving soon. The first team is scheduled to come at the end of the month.
You may have heard that the CDC will begin requiring a negative COVID test to fly into the U.S. This order does include U.S. citizens who have been traveling abroad. COVID tests are easily obtained in Honduras, but the paperwork can be a bit complicated. This means that visiting teams will have a new challenge to face since travelers only have 72 hours between taking the test and landing in the States. But as Trish said, “We’re going to rise to the challenge and not let it stop us.”
Fundraising & Family
Allen’s birthday fundraiser has raised $8,000, to date. This is counting money raised on Facebook, as well as donations on the website that were earmarked for this cause. All of these funds will be used for feeding kids. It’s not too late to get in on the action and wish Allen a happy 60th!
In other family news, Ben is still not 100% certain if he will be accepted into the Air Force’s high school program. He is waiting for final confirmation, but he isn’t waiting idly. He is gathering up the information needed to join the military the regular way. Allen and Trish are pleased that he has a plan to move forward and that he is making informed decisions about his future.
Prayer Requests & Showtime
Please pray that the Maryland container will get through Customs without a hitch and that the contents will make it to Gracias safe and sound. Pray also for the upcoming team visits. Sowers4Pastors relies a lot on ambassadors to go back and promote the ministry. Teams also do important work like carrying Manna 4 Lempira letters back and forth in their suitcases. The sponsors have been able to send emails to their children, but everyone misses getting physical letters. The lack of visiting teams has also impacted the sister church program. Please pray that the churches in the States will maintain that special tie with their sister churches in Honduras.
In the words of Allen, “We need people to stay focused on the big picture.”
What you’re seeing now may look like someone learning to juggle, but this is all a part of the big picture, just the regular day-to-day grind version. Sowers4Pastors has never stopped passing out food and doing other vital ministry tasks, but, without the visiting teams, it has lost some of the razzle-dazzle. So, queue the music, and send in the teams because, friends, it’s almost showtime!
- posted by Christi.