* GUATEMALA * * * * * * * * Dick Rutgers *

An ongoing journal of life as a Missionary in Guatemala. It will make you laugh and cry at the same time.

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Location: Chimaltenango, Guatemala

I work in Guatemala with Hope Haven international and Bethel Ministries. Along with my friends Chris and Donna Mooney and their family, we share the love of Jesus in various ways. Although giving out and maintaining wheelchairs is our primary ministry, we are involved in many other things as well. Building houses, feeding the hungry, providing education to handicapped children in orphanages and villages, and hosting a camp for the handicapped are just a small part of the things that God has given us the privilege of getting involved in. For several years now I have been keeping daily journals. Once a week I try to post new journals and pictures. My e-mail is dick@dickrutgers.com Guatemala Cell Phone # 502 5379 9451 USA Phone # 360 312 7720(Relays free to Guatemala)

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Journal January 13-16

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

This morning was another exciting go to the dentist and then do computer work at the shop mornings.This afternoon Calin Joined me and we went back to the aldea where Maria lives. I had promised Rosa the blind girl’s mom that I would pick her and her two children that were staying there up and get them back to their home where two more of her children have been staying by themselves for several days. Tomorrow morning I plan on picking her up and bringing her in to see a doctor at Hermano Pedro. She had been having such severe headaches and dizzy spells that she and two of her children have had to stay with a friend in Maria’s Aldea, that is caring for her. This is hard for her because two of her daughters one of whom is blind, have had to remain in the families one room dwelling here in Chimaltenango.

I am going to keep this one short because the kids that are in my house seem to be in more need of attention than my computer.

Yours in Christ: Dick

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

(Click on any photo to enlarge)
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Any of you that keep up with my journals already know how much I enjoy film crews (NOT), but back a few months ago in one of my weaker moments I promised a friend that I would spend a day with one that was coming in to Guatemala to film various mission projects. Well today was the day that I had promised to do this. So at 9:30 I met with a fairly large group of people that all had cameras that were bigger than most of the kids that they were coming to film. I at least figured that my entire day would not be wasted because I had to bring the lady that needed to see a doctor in to Hermano Pedro anyway. I guess what bothers me the most about taking professional photographers through the orphanage and into the villages is that often times the story takes priority over the person that the story is about. Today however proved to be pleasantly different. Yes I still hated to be fitted with a cordless mike and those big cameras still looked intimidating (Why they can’t use alittle pocket camera like I took these pictures with is still beyond me), but today was different. These people really cared about the people that they were filming. It was refreshing to see several of them wiping tears from their own eyes, or laying down their cameras to hold one of the kids that would much rather be held for a few minutes than have an hour documentary made about them. I can honestly say that my entire day with them was an enjoyable one and that they left a lasting impression on those that they visited in the orphanage, in the homes and villages that we visited, and the kids in my home. Thanks gang for showing those that you visited that they were more important to you than nice photos and a good story.

Yours in Christ: Dick

Thursday, January 15, 2009, 12:19 PM

This is a rather strange time of day for me to be writing in my journal but I am learning to grab what ever free time I have to write or I seem to fall way behind. I got up early this morning and took Rosa back in to Hermano Pedro. They wanted to see her again today so that they could run some more tests. Thanks to the staff at Hermano Pedro they once again allowed her to be one of the first patients that they saw. I cannot get over how accommodating they are to everyone that I bring there. Even allowing yesterday’s film crew to come in is something that is generally not done. I brought Rosa back to her home about an hour ago and figured that I would stop off at home for just a little quiet time. It did not work out that way though because even though I left my car about a block away to be washed I was quickly discovered. I am starting to wonder if the kids have hidden cameras or some type of alarm in my house because some how they always seem to know when I am in the house. Any way I guess that I better go and open the gate before they wear out the new set of batteries that are in my doorbell.

More later if I find the time.

10:00 PM

I finally have a bit of time to write before heading off to bed. Then again bed sounds pretty good to me right about now.

Yours in Christ: Dick

Friday, January 16, 2009, 8:40 PM
It’s rather humbling, but it seems that God keeps using the kids that I work with to teach me lessons that I should be teaching them. Just five weeks ago I wrote about Fernando giving his new pare of shoes to a little boy that was on the buss who had none. Well today he did something that once again stopped me in my tracks. Abner, Marcos, and I had already left for Hermano Pedro to repair some wheelchairs, but after stopping off at burger king for some breakfast we turned back towards my house because I had forgotten a drill that I needed. (Forgetting things happens a lot to me lately. They say that there are 2 things that happen when you get older. One is that you get more forgetful, but the other one I can’t remember.) Now where was I? Oh ya, anyway when I pulled back into my alley I saw and old man and a young boy standing by my gate. When I got out of my car the Old man came over and shook my hand. He then asked me if it was OK if he took two warn out pieces of foam rubber that I had set out in the alley by the rest of my garbage. About then Fernando came out of his house and walked over to us. He soon struck up a conversation with the old man and his grandson. I do not know who brought up the subject, Fernando or the old man, but Fernando told me that the little boy and the old man were both in need of shoes. Looking down at the ones that they were wearing quickly confirmed that he was right. Partly out of fear that Fernando would once again give his shoes away I asked them to wait out side while I went in and looked to see if I had any shoes left that people from the states had brought down for me to give away. As I came back out of my house I was actually feeling quite good about myself because not only had I found some used shoes for them but also I had gone beyond the call of duty and found a brand new toothbrush and some toothpaste for the little boy. I was quite certain that he would appreciate this gesture of kindness on my part. When I handed them these treasures they both thanked me but only the old man shook my hand. His grand son could not because both of his hands were full. In his right hand he was holding the foam rubber that was wrapped around the shoes and toothbrush that I had given him. In his left was the new electronic game that I had given Fernando for Christmas. I had given a few things that I would never miss. Fernando had given all he had.

Mark 12:42-44

But a poor widow came and put in two very small copper coins, worth only a fraction of a penny.

Calling his disciples to him, Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, this poor widow has put more into the treasury than all the others.

They all gave out of their wealth; but she, out of her poverty, put in everything—all she had to live on."

Yours in Christ: Dick


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