Belin UMC members build house in Guatemala

  • Thursday, July 24, 2014

During a mission trip to Guatemala, members of Belin United Methodist Church learned a little about themselves while helping others.

The mission included 20 people ages 13 to 70 who helped build a house for a family in San Raymundo.

The group left July 6 and returned July 12.

Willie Lee, owner of Lee’s Inlet Apothecary in Murrells Inlet, said he has brought insight back each of the four times he has gone overseas on mission trips with members of his family.

“I know we live in world of plenty, and there is much more out there,” Lee said.

“Murrells Inlet is pretty small, so for myself and my children to learn about other cultures and to share God’s love with total strangers it helps broaden our perspective.”

Some of the mission members also led a children’s Bible study group, bringing together about 30 children for games and activities.

Catherine Morris, 14, who was on her first mission trip, is a rising freshman at St. James High School.

She was one of the leaders of the Bible school groups with her mother, Jean Morris.

“At first it was pretty hard because none of us knew Spanish and the children only spoke Spanish,” Catherine Morris said.

“We had to do charades to help them figure out what we were saying. A translater helped some.”

She said they did have some of the songs translated into Spanish before the trip so the kids would know the words to the songs.

“I think it was a great trip,” Catherine Morris said.

“It helps us appreciate what we have and the opportunities here in the U.S.”

Dave Hobson, organizer of the trip, has led missions to Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras over the last six years with help from a group called Casas Por Christo.

He said that group arranges for lodging and food at the location, chooses the family that will be helped, and supplies building materials and supervision at the site.

“Only a couple of us had experience building a house, but most of us were willing to learn,” Hobson said.

He said Bill Keese was the contractor and was helped by David Strickland who Hobson described as a “Jack of all trades.”

The house was built for a family of five, Pedro, Lucia and their children, Maria, Marvin and Daniel.

Hobson said the family had torn down their house, which had a dirt floor, no doors and walls and roof made out of whatever scraps they could find.

The mission team dug footers around the perimeter, poured the foundation, built the wooden frame house with treated lumber and toped it off with a tin roof.

Hobson said at the place where the mission members stayed, the Morning Glory School, three toilets and several showers were not working, so they repaired those too.

He said he would recommend that people take part in mission trips to other countries because it inspires you in your life.

“I have met some really nice people on these trips,” Hobson said.

“They are grateful, happy and they don’t see themselves as poor or deprived,” Hobson said.

“They are not so concerned like we are about having things and buying more things.”

He said one of the most inspiring experiences on this summer’s trip was seeing a woman and her family that a group had helped before.

“They were all smiles and glad to see us,” Hobson said.

“The mother sent her daughter to get two liter soft drinks so we would have something cool to drink.”

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