Hola everybody:) Here are some updates on everything that has been going on at Strong Missions.
+The Work Sites+
The Carrillos community park construction project-
The retaining wall that surrounds the park area and built in front of a high hillside is just about complete. All the cinder blocks have been laid and all that is left to do is fill the wooden forms with concrete that will be used make the the support columns and headers. A smaller and shorter wall is being built around the boundaries of the park that face the street which will be key in maintaining the safety of children from oncoming traffic. Recent groups have had more than their share of trench digging and concrete work. Through the strong spirit of service that each missions team brings, it is all coming along nice and smoothly despite the occasional refreshing downpour of rain that floods the trench with water!
The San Luis Elementary school office building project-
The construction of the school office building is really coming along quickly as well. What was only trenches a maze of trenches with some re-bar placed down in them, is now an actual the near completion of a building structure. On every work day that there's a missions group serving with us, the children of the area happily see the work of the groups and are eager to try to communicate and play with the 'gringos'. Needing to be completed in this high volume season of groups (typically lasting into mid-August), greater priority is being placed on finishing up this work project for the community of Carrillos. This construction project will greatly benefit the elementary school since current office and administration space is small, cramped, and needing of a greater space to better manage and administrate the school and its young students of the community.
Palabra Viva Iglesia Metodista de Carrillos-
The construction of an additional building has gone quite a ways in this past month. Despite the problem due to the great rainfall that easily flooded and muddied up the trench area, the mission groups proved to be real workhorses and laid the foundation concrete and re-bar to move on to the great deal of block laying that needed to be done. As a fruit of the servant attitude, the wall is rising quickly section by section.
updated photos of these construction sites can be viewed HERE
+Interaction with the children of the area+
In addition to the various construction sites that Strong Missions is involved in, a majority of the groups that come to work and serve had conducted vacation bible schools (VBS) for the children of the community. They have been held at the local pentecostal church, the methodist church, and at the San Luis elementary school. Typically the VBS's involve art and craft activities along with interactive games for the kids to take part in. It is such a great interaction and time of sharing for both the people visiting from the U.S. and for the children of the small community here in Carrillos where safe open space to play is very limited resulting in the children either forced to stay home or risk playing in the unsafe street traffic.
But with each group that comes to serve, they continued to be taken to the methodist church of Los Guidos to experience the impact that this small church is making in the poor area of its community. They help with the children's feeding program by serving the kids food and interacting with them, play games with them, and even partake in a lively worship times of music and dancing! Each group that comes is greatly impacted by Los Guidos and by the service that Pastor Edgar Ponce and his family do there.
For detailed information about giving and the needs of Los Guidos please click HERE to see a previous blog post containing all of this information.
+The Wet Season+
Though it is the summer season in the U.S., here in Costa Rica it is the winter season or better known as the wet season. On a typical day, it is quite sunny and warm during the morning hours, and cools down significantly during the afternoon and evening with cloud cover which more often than not, leads to rain. In regards to the groups, rain boots and rain jackets are very much helpful and highly recommended to get around the work sites. However despite, the continual rainy weather, cold weather is not much of an issue; thus minimizing the need for much cold weather clothing. Simply having a rain jacket and a longsleeve t-shirt is enough to keep warm especially if traveling up to the Poas Volcano and/or the cloud forest of Monteverde.
That's all for now!
May God's grace and peace be with us all.