Santa Maria - Day 1 Blog

by Andrew Phillips

Today was the introductory training day, which involved a several musical presentations,  a short skit, several prayers of thanks, and a delicious meal provided by the lovely people at Fundacion Hunapu in the village of Santa Maria de Jesus. With my crew, we learned how to install concrete floors, which is our project for the week. I feel that we really got a good grasp on the technique, and I am really optimistic about this week.

Our training involved installing a floor for a family under the guidance of our mason, Luis, The installation went tremendously, and Luis does a very excellent job making sure the floors are constructed well. Mixing the concrete is a very labor-intensive task, as it is all done by hand at the site, With many people to help out, the work is pretty enjoyable and goes smoothly. I have been with this mission for several weeks now, and I am still so stricken by the amazing welcome given to us our first day. It is so incredibly humbling to be treated so kindly by strangers, when we are just doing our job.

The people have just poured their gratitude on our group, both at the center and in the homes. I really feel that we just don’t deserve such amazing praise from such wonderful brothers and sisters in Christ. The spirit is so strong in these people, and I just keep being reminded that we as privileged Americans have much to learn from these people.

I am reminded of the Bible verse that states that it is easier for a camel to fit through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven, and I can see so clearly how material possessions can get in the way of the spirit. Those possessions can just as easily be used by the spirit, however, and I am humbled at the way God has used my material, inferior wealth to benefit the greater, spiritual wealth of the people we serve as well as all those involved in this project. 

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