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Mission of Hope

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Thursday, February 11, 2010

By Bonnie Black
Well, another day and – guess what? More changes! All for the better as we heard this evening around 6:30pm Nica time that everyone will be able to make it here over the next 3-4 days. That also means that there will actually be only 2 days when everyone who is part of Mission #35 is here on the ground together. An extremely different kind of Mission to kick off our 11th year serving our friends here in Nicaragua!

This morning, A Team began our day reducing the size of what we had set up yesterday as the latest information received last night was that we were going to have a total of 10 people for sure and possibly 3-4 more near the beginning of the week. By 11am, we heard that 5 would be joining us between Sunday and Monday, so plans for dinners made by the local women were set for the varying numbers beginning Sunday through next Friday. Later we confirmed that we would only be constructing 8 homes with Inocencio Velasquez, our local construction crew chief, and the President of the local Junta, Magaly Velasquez (his niece) as 6 of those delayed due to the weather preferred to be on-site when the construction is done. Mauricio Flores, our administrator here in Chiquilistagua, assured Inocencio and the families that only 8 homes would done this week and the other 6 would have to wait until April or May.

Diane Crosier, Joy Cayea, Bev Gogola, Bill Calmbacher, Samantha Mulcahy, Rachel Daly and Roger Patnode went over to NiCarlos and began sorting through the many cartons left from the October container shipment. There is also some equipment for our new clinic that will remain there in a very protected area for the tentative focused mission in May to use in establishing the new location for our clinic here in Chiquilistagua.

Once informed of the 7 more people coming on Sunday and Monday, Roger Patnode reviewed the original Medical Team schedule and adapted it to the days the team would be in the country based on a phone call around 11am. Mauricio then confirmed with the various sites the adjusted days/times. So that was all set.

Meanwhile, I had gone to the airport to pick up one van and cancel the reservation on the second one, as we would not be needing it with a total of only 14 people during the next week.

When I returned, I joined the others at NiCarlos as we sorted and inventoried the cartons which would remain at NiCarlos’ in storage. Tomorrow morning at 9am, Sister Ligia from San Jose Hospital in Diriamba has arranged (through Mauricio) to bring two trucks for two round trips in order to obtain the donations from the October container that are occupying most of NiCarlos’ interior. Once she begins to move the first shipment, tomorrow a portion of A Team will move the balance to the lawn for Sister Ligia’s second pick up and begin the sorting of the rest of the cartons from the shipment to be disbursed among the other sites we serve. Once achieved, Mauricio will schedule deliveries – perhaps as early as Saturday!

Diane Crosier, Joy Cayea, Samantha Mulcahy and Rachel Daly then spent a good portion of the afternoon in the NiCasa interior courtyard sorting the 600 notebooks and pencils out of cartons which had come on the container shipment in October in preparation for creating a notebook with 2 pencils for each of the sponsored children at Niño Jesus de Praga and Mother of the Divine Son School in Nejapa. It was going to be a large task for only 4-6 people to accomplish over the next few days among all of the other projects planned for the small group (at that point!).

Marty Mannix joined Magaly in the afternoon to look at the 3 sites selected by Father Jalder in Nejapa for construction, we thought, in April or May. These were the remaining sites of the original 14 selected for this mission. As they toured the sites, they informed those families that they could come get their supplies any time during the next week or so here in Chiquilistagua. Well, that will now be changed in the morning making 6 more families here quite happy to know the homes they were originally promised this coming week will indeed happen.

Around 6:30pm, we received that call from Sister Debbie that, indeed, all of the Mission #35 team has procured tickets and will be arriving over the next 3-4 days – with varying departures Thursday through Monday. So, as soon as we receive the specific information on who is arriving and departing when, we will be able to adjust the original work schedules and see just how much of what was planned on can feasibly occur before the last person heads back home in 10 days.

‘Reflexing’ has been the word of the past two days both in Plattsburgh and here in Nicaragua. It will become the mantra of Mission #35!

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