This week marked the start of an exciting new project as we connected students in Guatemala and in the U.S. through a pen-pal literacy enhancement project. Matching students of similar grade level, the project focuses on encouraging interest in developing both reading and writing skills for students at both ends of the pencil... or keyboard, whichever the case may be.
The teacher surprised me with a stack of letters the kids had written ahead of time. Our Outreach Director said these could be the very first letters the students have ever written since letter-writing is not as valued in the more remote areas as other educational skills mastery.
After the classroom time, we had some really good get-to-know-you conversations with parents and children as the community gathered for the kick-off of the 2015 nutrition supplement program and school supplies distribution. We gleaned insights into who is related to whom; whose house burned down in the village and who is being blamed; how the tree in the church yard deserved to be cut down because it was struck by lightning and might cause another bad thing to happen. We met new baby brothers named after grandpas who live far, far away. And we saw some smiles where before there had simply been sober walls of silent contemplation. This was a seriously great day.
Hearts are opening. God is truly at work in 'the lemon town,' and we ask you to continue to pray for favor and cross-cultural creativity to share the gospel effectively. Thank you for your faithfulness through prayer, financial support and spiritual partnership in the work God is doing in the hearts and lives of the people of Guatemala. It's such an honor to serve on your behalf.
De & Rod Ishmael
Partner support and special project donations may be sent to:
Crescent Lake Christian Center / 1250 St. Louis Ave. / Excelsior Springs, MO 64024