Tuesday, June 05, 2018

Fuego Volcano Erupts

On Sunday, June 3, in the middle of the afternoon, the Fuego Volcano erupts.  The devastation is dramatic, sad and heart wrenching.

It was just a normal Sunday afternoon, as we were watching the Paris Open on TV.  Glenn mentioned that it was getting quite dark.  We thought it was the normal afternoon rain shower.  Later that afternoon, Glenn noticed a small layer of ash was covering our patio, all over our yard and out into the streets.

It was at this point we turned on the TV to watch the media.  Facebook had lots of images of the devastation.

Fuego (which means Fire) is located just outside of Antigua.  This Volcano is less than 30 miles (as the crow flies) from our house.  The winds were blowing East North East, towards Guatemala City.  At 2:15pm, the Guatemala City Airport was closed.  The last time the nearby Pacaya Volcano erupted in 2010, the Guatemala City airport was closed for 10 days - creating headaches for travelers.  Back then, in 2010, there was much more ash that coated the city as well as our neighborhood.

Sunday, as we watched the news, we could tell that the major devastation was closer to the base of the volcano.  The small villages of El Rodeo and Alotenango were devastated by the pyroclastic flow that ran quickly down the volcano.  No one can outrun the blast.  I've read it is more like a Pompeii effect.  The road down from Antigua to the town of Esquintla is closed.  There was at least one bridge that was destroyed. 

As we view the Guatemalan TV, people are still crying out looking for their loved ones.  There are many bodies that have not be identified. Customarily, the Guatemalans buried their loved ones within 24 hours.  

Local believers have set up Relief Centers where Guatemalans can donate bottled water, non perishable food items and used clothing to those affected.  Churches have opened their doors to house those who have been misplaced. 

#PrayforGuatemala is a trending thread. 

The President of Guatemala has declared 3 days of mourning.  Many local schools have canceled classes.

The world class and famous La Reunion Golf course was completely covered from the blast of the Volcano.

Thank you to those of you who are praying for us and for Guatemala.  All the Camino Global Guatemala missionaries are safe.  Pray for the relief efforts going on.  Pray that folks would be open to the Gospel of Salvation. 

Give to the Camino Global Disaster Relief Emergency Fund

"Though the mountains be shaken
    and the hills be removed,
yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken
    nor my covenant of peace be removed,”
    says the Lord, who has compassion on you.  Isaiah 52:10

Monday, April 23, 2018

The Death of a Phone Line

Call me sentimental.  Call me nostalgic.

But don't call me at 348 6634 anymore.  I'm grieving!

My mom and dad have had this phone number since July 17, 1967.  That's nearly 51 years.  It began as Diamond eight six six three four.  Then it was shortened to DI 8 6634, then it was changed to just 348 6634.  Then it was lengthened with the addition of the area code to 214 348 6634.

This number has been a part of my life for the past 51 years.  It has been a true friend.  It is a part of my history.  This is the phone line that has withstood the test of time.

When we first moved to the house when I was in 4th grade, this is the phone I would pick up.  I chose the "assigned seat" at the breakfast table, because it was the "closest" to the phone.  This is the phone number my childhood friends such as Lisa, Donna, Pat and even Prissy would call.

This is the phone number I put on all my medical records while attending grade school, the phone number my mom would use to follow-up on "room-mother" activities for my 5th and 6th grade years.  She used this number to call my Camp Fire Girls friends to inform them of my surprise birthday party she organized for me one Sunday night after our Pioneer Girls meeting up at the neighborhood Baptist church.

This is the phone my parents called from maybe only 3, but no more than 5 times while I was in college up in Chicago.  I could expect a phone call on my October birthday usually around 9pm (because it was cheaper then).  The two other times I got a phone call was informing me of the unfortunate and untimely death of my cousin in a fatal small engine plane crash and the unexpected death of Donna's and Pat's father.

This same phone number was used for my contact information when I applied for my first "real" job at Delta Airlines.  I used 348 6634 when Glenn asked for my phone number to ask me on my first date with him.   And then I used this number for about 2 hours non-stop to call my close friends and family to inform them that Glenn had proposed to me.

And we called this number thousands of times when we moved 4,500 miles away, 3 time zones and a southern hemisphere away to Bolivia.  Our good friend, John Gunter, known as CP5AC/CP6 would do phone patches to this number.  He announced the birth of Gary Glenn by using another HAM operator in the states that in turn, called 214 348 6634.

Recently, my father, along with consultation with my brother and Glenn, decided that it was best to pull the plug, to cancel the land-line.  I didn't realize it would be so hard on me emotionally.  It's just a phone line.  It's just something that has been a part of my growing up years.  It has history.  And it is a part of me.  But I realize the need for change.  There is no need for a land-line with the emergence of iphones and cell phones.

Good - bye 6634. RIP

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Azmera Haven Ladies Retreat

I had the honor and privilege to attend an Azmera (African word that means harvest) Haven Retreat. It is a non-profit organization with the goal of nurturing and impacting cross-cultural global workers already in the harvest field, so that they can serve to their fullest potential and remain faithful to their calling overseas.

In years past, I have attended several other retreats that are very similar in the goal of refreshing the missionary ladies on the field.  The timing was perfect.  It was just what I needed.

 A rest, with reflection, rejuvenation and reconnecting.

How do I begin to thank the 25 ladies from the United States who flew down to Costa Rica and donated their time and expertise to share their faith with us all?

Thank you!  


I got a new hair cut, styled.  I went swimming in the resort pool.  On Friday night we all walked into a Birthday Party for us.  Each table was totally decorated, balloons, and lit candles on individual birthday cup cakes.  We opened birthday presents and told memorable birthday party experiences.   I got up early every morning to watch the sun rise off in the distance as I looked out into the Pacific Ocean (Southern coast in Costa Rica:).  I had a massage and a pedicure (with blue neon toenail polish, because I want to be a hip Grammie).

selfie with Shirley who cut and styled my hair

I had the opportunity to reconnect with gals my age, those who have served 20+ years and those who have just arrived on the field within the past few years - each with their different experiences, challenges and struggles.  Besides the intentional times where we had worship and praise, we had small group times.

One of the things I like best is to connect with ladies.  Boom!  You live in Pagosa Springs, Colorado?  Then you must know Anne?  Boom!  Made a connection.  Oh, you are from Colleyville, Texas?  Then you must know Shelly?  Boom!  Another connection.  No way, you have been to Bolivia?  Then you must know Dorothy, Virginia and even Beverly?  Boom!  Made another one.  Then the most remarkable one, Priscilla, one of the volunteers, came up to me and asked if we were supported by Reinhardt Bible Church back in the day?  Sure enough, she remembered our name/face from the missionary rooster!  Boom!  Then I said "You must know my daughter Ellen, from Denver Seminary?"  Boom!  It works both ways. 

 You know I am the happiest when I can make connections and figure out where our paths have crossed before or where you know someone that we know!  That's my happy place.

Want to know more about this wonderful organization?
  Azmera.  Click here

Thursday, April 12, 2018

John and Carley's Visit

John was the speaker for our recent conference here in Guatemala City.  We have known the John and Carley Wecks for nearly 40 years now.  He was our pastor at Grand Prairie Bible Church back in the Day.

John and Carley were first here in Guatemala back in 1973 when they traveled through Mexico and Guatemala on PMT (Practical Missionary Training) with Central America Mission.  They remember visiting the historic SETECA.
After visiting SETECA, we took the Wecks to the Cemetery, the famous Guatemala City Dump and also to Casita Benjamin.  We ended up at Media Cancha for lunch.

After the conference, we headed to Panajachel for 3 days to
a little bit.

We enjoyed a Brunch at Casa Del Mundo which involved a tuk-tuk ride to the boat dock to take a private boat over to Casa Del Mundo.  Later, we drove from Panajachel to San Antonio Palopo to visit the pottery shop and Nancy's shop.

John did the Zip-line in Pana and had a blast.  We then had our entertainment by going to Mike's Coffee Shop to have a cup of coffee.

All in all, we had a blast with John and Carley Wecks along with Jonathan Edwards for the past 8 days.  

Thank you for coming to visit and to minister to us.  Y'all are the best.