Thursday, July 28, 2016

A Preview of Coming Events

In case you’ve ever wondered what the Sowers crew does all day, here’s an abbreviated rundown of their schedule for August and part of September. Warning: You’ll need a break just reading it!

Camp, Kids, and Videos

This final week of July is being spent doing major remodeling on our small team house - as it is about to become a short-term home for Russell, Iris, and RJ! Toward the weekend, thoughts and actions will turn toward preparing for MK Camp. There are supplies to be purchased and vehicles to be packed. Allen and Russell will be leaving early so they can pick up incoming staff at the airport and do some grocery shopping.

Camp runs from August 1-7. Ben will be there as a camper. Even the three Sowers offspring who currently live in the U.S. will be there, working as camp staff. It’s a regular Sowers-Palooza, with the notable exception of Trish, who will be holding down the fort at home, and Iris, who's feeling a bit too pregnant for a road trip just now!

On August 2nd, Jenny Oetting, videographer extraordinaire, will be arriving to spend the month of August. She’s spending the time making videos of all of Sowers4Pastors’ ministries. Allen and Trish will be able to use those videos when they visit churches in the States. Jenny will be staying on the Sowers’ property. Somewhere. But I’ll get to the issue of housing in a bit! Patience, Grasshoppa!

During the second week of August, Ben will be back in school, but Trish will get some quality time with the Sowers kids who are visiting from the States. And, by “quality time,” I mean she’ll get to see them, while they run around doing what needs to be done! I almost said they’d be running around like chickens with their head cut off, but they are highly efficient headless poultry!

Team 1 and Team 2

On August 12th, a 2-man team from Fredericktowne Baptist Church in Maryland (Allen and Trish’s sending church) is arriving. The men will be teaching at Pastors’ Training School and getting a feel for what life and ministry is like for the Sowers. That’s great because they’ll be able to help spread Sowers4Pastors’ vision to their home church. The team will be leaving on August 20th.

Do you remember those visiting Sowers? Yeah, well, they'll be flying back to the U.S. during the time the visiting team is there.

On August 27th, a team from Lighthouse Church in Maryland will be arriving. They’ll be building a bridge-in-a-week. That means Allen and Russell will be busy the week before they arrive making sure all of the supplies have been purchased and delivered. If you’re going to build a bridge in a week, you can’t stand around waiting for supplies!

Coffee, Shoes, and Feeding Centers

During this time, Russell will be running the (approximately 15 member) work crew as they prepare ten new acres for planting coffee. There will be much more about the ins and outs of the coffee project in an upcoming post. For now, let’s just say they will be BUSY this planting season, which will spill over into September. There will be a break in coffee activity while the bridge-in-a-week project is going on. That’s because Russell’s head work crew leaders will be assisting with the bridge construction.

Of course, all of the regular ministries are still up and running. Manna4Lempira is awaiting a shoe delivery, which will be distributed to the kids at the Mercedes center. That will likely happen toward the end of the 2nd week of August.

Oh, and they will be registering about 200 kids for a third Manna4Lempira site. They will be getting ages, weight, height, and shoe sizes. Again, that will delay the farm work for a few days. In the overall scheme of things, the coffee farm has the lowest priority because that work isn’t as time sensitive.

Things with Wheels

But, wait, there’s more! Sowers4Pastors will be turning in applications to try to get funding for fourteen new motorcycles for indigenous pastors. The pastors each pay for half. The program is pre-approved for ten motorcycles, but they are hoping to fulfill all fourteen requests. Actually getting the motorcycles will mean multiple trips to the big city for purchasing, registering, picking up, etc…

And, hey, while they’re in the big city, they’ll put one of the Land Cruisers into the shop for routine maintenance. It’s a four hour drive to the city. They’ll do some necessary shopping, buy tires, handle other necessary things, and drive back.

A Place to Call, “Home”--Eventually!

Surely that’s all, right? Wrong! Do you remember the part about housing guests - specifically during the 2nd week of Aug, when there will be FOUR guests? That is complicated because the Sowers are currently working on a remodel of the team house (which has, in the past, served as bedroom space for guests). Once the remodel is completed, Russell and Iris plan to live there for a year or more. Before Allen and Trish visit the U.S., Russell and his family will move into their new, temporary home. Construction on the larger home will continue. Once that is completed, Russell and Iris will move into the new home and the old team house will be remodeled to become Allen and Trish’s new home.

I have a hunch you’ll be hearing more about that process in future blog posts. But, for now, I’m tired just thinking about it!

- posted by Christi (but Trish had to figure out all of the labels!!!)

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