Stories

Stories (4)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Sarah Koscielniak’s Story

I have been to Honduras through LLFC two times before this summer, and I had such an impact on my heart that it led me to go to Concordia University, St. Paul, to become a Director of Christian Outreach (I am currently designing my own major with Christian Outreach and Intercultural-Communication, but it's about the same concept).  So I was pretty plugged in with the missions of LLFC even though I was in MN.  I heard about Stacey going to the orphanage and quite a few people approached me during Thanksgiving break last year to prayerfully consider going down with her to help at the orphanage.  I almost didn't want to go.  I thought, been there-done that, for two years now.  Yet, God tugged on my heart and tore down my pride, and I can never thank Him ENOUGH for leading me to go! He blessed me in all I did down there, even though my Spanish was atrocious and I've never had teaching practice with kids.

These boys challenged me, stretched me and left me with many new insights about myself and my relationship with God and others.  God worked through mornings where I would be sipping on delicious Honduran coffee and reading the Bible and the boys walking through and stopping to ask questions about why I was reading the Bible for fun.  He blessed us in times of going on adventures through the mountains in His creation, enjoying all that He had made for us! He worked through classes with Adolfo when his eyes would light up when he understood one of the concepts, or when he got the puzzle right on his first try.  God was present when Josue would march up to me with Adolfo next to him, demanding I give Adolfo a sucker too, and vise versa.  There are so many memories I am left with, that just SHOUT God's love and grace and mercy.  There were many times the boys showed me that forgiveness, and many times I had to show them.   They became my brothers.  I keep their pictures in my room, call them once or twice a month, and pray for them constantly.  Each has their own story, their own hardships, their own little quirks.  I only wish that Spanish wouldn't have been such a barrier to getting to know them on an even deeper level.  This has helped me enormously in my quest to make my own major where I hope to work on breaking down barriers such as language and culture in order to share God's love! God is good.

    

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Andrew Boyd's Story

Andrew Boyd's Story

 

I first traveled to Honduras in the summer of 2005. Like most great experiences in my life, it was unexpected.  Lakeshore Fellowship Church (LFC) decided to adopt a small rural Honduran village by the name of Quiscamote.  At the time the trip was announced, I had neither the funds nor the desire to go on a trip to Honduras.  However, a month before the trip I was given a ticket to go. With that first trip God planted a seed that would later completely take hold of my life.

I attended college from 2005-2009 (Go Blue!). During that time I had the chance to go back to Honduras several times. Each trip I got to know people better and experienced a growing passion to do something in the region. I also learned about the power of microfinance to help people rise out of poverty. I felt this could be a great and meaningful way to help La Unión, but at the time, I wasn't quite sure how to actually do it. I got the opportunity when myself and an amazing group of friends came together to do a research project in the region. We saw this as our way to begin efforts that would eventually lead to a development organization.

In October of 2009 that dream was realized when we incorporated Union MicroFinanza (UMF) as non-profit organization. As of 2012, UMF works in 24 villages serving over 191 La Union farmers with agricultural microloans, business training and supply chain and infrastructural assistance. We have imported over 95,000 lbs of our farmers' coffee to the United States as a specialty product.

The relationships that I have formed through this journey are what have made me who I am today. I am so blessed to be doing what I am. I would not trade it for anything. I grew up in a great church at LFC with great leaders and supporters that opened doors for me that I would not have been able to open myself. I work with a team of people that care so much for about what they do that they are willing to take no pay and sell their homes. More so, we work with an amazing group of communities in La Union, Honduras.

I hope you will consider coming to visit us. 

www.unionmicrofinanza.org

http://www.facebook.com/unionmicrofinanza

http://blog.unionmicrofinanza.org/

A UMF farmer & his daughterA resident of La Union

A UMF farmer & his daughter ~ photo by Morgan Fett            A resident of La Union ~ photo by Morgan Fett

The 2012 Mission Team

The 2012 Honduras Mission Team

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Stacey Wiles' Story

For many children in Honduras home is not a safe or stable environment. Parents are alcoholics and/or engaged with drugs. This creates many damaging psychological effects on children.  Children that are in those types of homes become abandoned, therefore, they find themselves living on the streets.  Being placed in public schools surrounds children within a negative environment. This encourages children to be involved in risky behavior such as stealing, drinking, doing drugs, and engaging in violence.  If children continue to be enrolled in these schools and form negative relationships they will grow up to be like their families and it will be a viscous cycle of broken homes.

H.O.M.E. is an organization that provides disadvantaged orphans in Honduras with a private Christian education to help them build life skills, character, and a solid foundation in Christ.  This service is needed to help end the vicious cycle of poverty which leads to a sense of desperation with the only outlet being crime and other self-destructive behaviors. Our two primary foci are to provide education which can help the orphans find jobs and be able to provide for themselves. Our Christian orld-view provides them with hope, motivation, and a sense of perseverance.

I became interested in Honduras after going on my first short term mission trip with LLF in 2007.  The following summer I went backpacking through Central America with a friend.  Most of our time was spent living with a host family in Honduras.  Our host family works at an orphanage in San Lorenzo and they invited us to visit.  While I was there I taught English to the orphans.  I fell in love with the orphanage and God’s plan for me became clear.  I started H.O.M.E. and set up the orphans with families in the United States to sponsor their education at a private Christian school.  During the summer of 2009 I spent three months teaching English at the orphanage and sharing God’s love. 



  
Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Louis' Story

My name is Louis.  Many Sundays ago, I was so inspired by the pictures and the talks about the kids at the orphanage in Honduras that I wanted to go around my neighborhood door-to-door and ask for change.  So my Mom and I made up a flyer in yellow writing that said, “Would you like to donate some money in my bucket so I could send it to kids at an orphanage in Honduras so they can go to school and live a happy life?”  I made a bucket with a slot in it and my Mom and I rode our bikes through our neighborhood door-to-door.  It was lots of FUN!!

By the time we were done, we counted all the money and I had collected $33.11 from my generous neighbors.  I then gave it to Ms. Simon to be given to the kids in Honduras.



A Congregation of the Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod

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