Thursday, March 31, 2011

Day 3

Day 3
Today was indeed a day that humbled me. We started off our day making our paper bag lunches and some other students and I made lunches for some of the Spectrum Staff. After breakfast was done and the lunches packed we started off on our adventure quest to the Bath House. On the way I ways semi nervous as this is the first time I have been on this trip and hopefully shall not be my last, even as a senior this year. At the Bath House I was on water detail, meaning I sat on a bucket and had my hand in the water barrel to make sure the temperature of the water was Just right for all of the little guys. As I waited for the water levels to lower I was able to sit and observe the other students work with the kids and interact with each other in cool ways. It was amazing to see Dylan and Payton working at the bathing station washing the kids with little hoses coming out of the water barrels. They squirted the kids with the water and were spraying them and the kids were just enjoying the water and having fun as little kids often do of any nationality. After the bathhouse the seniors and juniors got the opportunity to go to an area called Zona Norte, as Joel Marlette called it the Red Light District of Mexico. While there we went to a local shelter and fed the men who were staying there. It was a great blessing to serve to these men who knew very little or no English at all. Just to fed them and hear their thanks made it all worthwhile. Whilst in Zona Norte we took a walk around the block with the Spectrum Staff surrounding us. As we walked around we got a look at poverty in extremes I have never seen… or really dreamed of before. As we walked we saw people who…weren’t very modest in their attire because of their...Profession. It was an eye opener and just really humbled me and just had put the fact into my heard that these people are definitely people that need all of the love they can receive. I am glad and blessed to be here to help with what we can. We shall keep you all updated as we go. Keep everyone in your prayers not just us, but all of us.
Alec Neal.

               So today was a pretty packed day. We started out by going down to the market. There were so many different things to see, and not enough time. The vendors seem to read your profile and put a price according to what they see. After the market, we headed down to the bathhouses. It was very humbling. At one point I cleaned the boys feet. It wasn’t that it was disgusting, but the fact that cleaning feet is seen as a terrible job. It was fun though. Tickling the boys feet, talking with them, and just putting a smile on their face. When the bathing was all done, we had the opportunity to play soccer with some of the kids. Being terrible at soccer, I just ran around the field, and chased a little boy around. I didn’t know his name, but just being able to play with him was a blessing. At one point I caught him, and just picked him up and ran all over the field with him. It’s like I didn’t care what people thought, and that nothing else mattered except me and him. Later on the upperclassmen had the chance to go down to the “red-light district.” It was basically the “San Francisco” of Tijajuana. It was hard to see how people live their lives there. On the streets, in the clubs. It’s a terrible thing to see, but these are the people that need to hear the word the most. When we were in the mission, it brought back memories of my times in Portland and the early years of Mission Solano. Even down tot the smell. Still more to do, and such little time…
Joel Marlette

Day 2: Entry by Makinzie Thomas

First full day in Mexico.  Here's the details...

Today we helped build a house.  We woke up early, got ready, and headed over to the building site. We built the second story on the house. The house was on top of a hill so we thought it was going to be really hard to get wood and supplies up to the house. We made an assembly line and we actually got everything up to the house pretty quick. It is amazing what teamwork can do! Once we got everything up there we started on the second story! Most of us moved dirt. It was really tiring! A few people worked on the actual house and at the end of the day we got a lot done! At the house there were a few kids. It was so fun playing with them! They were so helpful and giving! A little boy I didn’t even know offered me and a whole bunch of other people some cheez-it’s when he only had a little bit of them! All together today was a success! When we arrived back, we had some fantastic spaghetti and just hung out. Today was a great day and we got a lot done!
Kinizie Thomas

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Day One: Entries by Mitchell and Nina

Here's a little recap of Day 1 in Mexico from the perspective of two High Life students; Mitchell and Nina

               Today is the beginning of our epic journey to the wonderful land of Mexico.  Since it was the first day, I will be brief. So we had a super long van ride, and we had various food stops along the way;  I enjoyed sleeping for the duration of most of it.  When we got to the border, I thought that it was going to be all super securitied up, but actually, most people were just cruising right along in.  Once we got in, it was a total culture shock.  All of the roadways were hectic and crazy, in the distance I saw a huge Mexican flag.  We went along some twists and turns then ended up at our place.  Once we got out, everybody immediately started to help unloading and getting everything organized. I was impressed at how cooperative everybody was and also at the speed of us getting everything done.  Afterwards, we just hung out for a while, changing clothes and hanging out. Then we all went to go get something to eat at a place called Super Taco.  I thought that since I took Spanish for three years that I would know what to say and that I would understand everybody, but once I sat down and had to order, I had no idea what to say.  I ended up getting some amazing tacos though, and Dylan gave me half of his torta (totally getting that next time)   now everyone is getting ready for a good night sleep and a busy night of working and helping build a house.
-Mitchell Duke
3.29.11-Day 1
Today was definitely a long day for the whole team! We got to the church at 4:30am this to get ready to leave for Tijuana, Mexico! The drive went by decently fast, at least for me and it was really fun getting to know everyone and spending time with each other!
When we got to the border, it all went smoothly for the most part and before we knew it we were unpacking everything and getting settled into the Spectrum Dorm.  The minute we crossed the border, all of the culture shock totally hit me.  This is my second time on this trip, but it is still really eye-opening.  Today I noticed a lot of people on the streets begging, or doing simple things to try to work for money. We even saw a guy juggling fire! I don’t remember seeing that many people like that last year, but it was really crazy seeing things like that and it was really sad. It was eye-opening for me just seeing how much I take for granted and how I don’t have to sit on the streets all day in order to get their food. I have so much compared to them.
We went to Super Taco today! It was SO goooooood! Seriously, you don’t even know how good it is! I had a “cabeza torta.” “Cabeza” is supposedly made out of the meat around the head of skull, but whatever it is, it was absolutely delicious!
I’m looking forward to tomorrow and the rest of the trip so much and I am so excited for what God is going to do in all of our lives! I am just so stoked to be here and it is such a blessing!
Thank you so much for all your prayers!
-Nesrine (Nina) Majzoub :]

On the Road!

The team is currently on the road and headed to Mexico!
Please keep each of them in your prayers.

Today:  Traveling...should be crossing the border around 3:30pm
Tomorrow, 3/30:  The PCC team will be working construction on a home for one of the Spectrum Ministries Staff
Thursday, 3/31:  Bath House Day.  High Life students will be helping out  by providing a clean bath, clean clothes, and lice treatment for children in need in one of the poorer neighborhoods of Tijuana.  They will also get lots of time to hang out and play games with the kids.  Pray that each of the children will feel the love of Jesus through our students.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Preparing our Hearts for Mexico

Below is a description of what the team is doing in preparation for our time in Mexico... entry by Rachel Williams

The Mexico team has been very busy lately getting ready for the trip! The whole team is reading a devotional book called A Call to Die. It is a daily devotional with a section to read, questions, Bible passages to read, memory verses, and a journal. Every day for 40 days the students and staff have completed one devotional. We also have another plain journal to fill out and write down verses, notes, highlights of our day, prayers, and observations of what God is teaching us. Every student is assigned a staff member and must call their leader everyday to talk about the reading. Every 10 days the leader switches students. As part of the book, every person is fasting from something that is getting in the way of their relationship with God for these 40 days.  Every student also has a prayer partner each week, another student, who they are responsible for contacting a couple times each week and pray for them. The students have chosen a scripture verse that they will be memorizing. Every person on the team also has a prayer partner outside of the team that they email and ask for prayer. The team has weekly meetings to connect with each other and prepare. The team helped out with the Missions Conference and recently held a bake sale to raise money for the trip. Prayer cards with pictures of each member of the team and as a whole were passed out on Sunday to encourage the congregation to pray for the team as well.  
-Rachel Williams; junior, Armijo HS


You might be thinking that this is a lot of preparation; and you're right.  It is. The exciting thing is to see the students step up to the challenge and fulfill all of their commitments for the trip on top of their regular responsibilities to family, sports teams, jobs and school.  Please pray with us that God uses this preparation of fasting from the world and feasting on the Word to work in each of their lives to grow them in the Lord and equip them to serve others now, in Mexico and in the future.  

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Mexico Bound!

We have 21 youth and children and 12 adults from Parkway Community Church in this years Mexico Missions Team.  We depart on March 29th for our annual trip to Tijuana, Mexico, serving with Spectrum Ministries.  Our time will include building a second floor of a home of a man who serves with Spectrum, bathing kids, distributing food, clothing and medical supplies to several different neighborhoods, playing with and feeding some orphans at a few orphanages and ministering to some inmates at a local Juvinele Hall. We also have an opportunity to attend a church service while we will be in Mexico. Thank you for your support in lifting our team up in prayer.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Work, Play and Worship

These last few days have been full of lots of activity.  We finished off working on the school property Saturday by moving loads and loads of sand and rocks to be used for the final beams and floor.  There is still some work to be done on the building but the tough part is finished.  The workers in Shandia are all set to make some significant progress next week.  We are all excited to see the school open by summer or sooner!  Saturday afternoon we were able to visit Jim Elliot's home.  A gentleman who lived in Shandia during Elliot's day gave us a tour and shared stories of his life with us.  What a great experience.  From there we headed to the beach to prepare a bonfire, swim in the river, and play with some of the community children.  That evening we were able to have a bonfire down by the river with the youth group.  We sang worship songs in English, Spanish and Quichua.  Finally we treated the youth to s'mores.  They had never had  s'mores and absolutely LOVED them.  We couldn't get those marshmallows toasted fast enough!  Sunday we all attended church together.  Again, we worshiped in Spanish and Quichua.  Alisa and Tim shared their testimonies and Pastor Dan preached.  What a joy to go to church and hear singing and preaching in 3 languages!  A few of us led Sunday school with the kiddos.  After church services part of our team took the kids out for some play time together.  Gina and I (Rachel) had an amazing opportunity to interview two older members of the community who lived in Shandia when Jim Elliot was there.  They shared about how they came to know Christ as a result of God working through Elliot and several other missionaries.  One woman, Carmela, shared through tears about the day the community learned of Jim Elliot's death.  She also wept over the youth of her community and her deep desire to have them walk closely with Jesus. It was a beautiful time and I am so thankful for the experience.  

The girls moving sand and rocks.  Even little Lucy got a work out!

Brianna playing soccer with the kids at the beach

Ronal, one of the kids in the community, came down to the beach with us to make sand castles