- Lindsay Keefer
- Woodburn Independent - Features
Woodburn church sends missionaries to Honduras orphanage
A group of seven from Woodburn Foursquare Church returned from visiting an orphanage in Honduras earlier this month, a place that has been sponsored by the church for about 12 years.
Nearly every summer, volunteers from the church travel to Didasko Childrens Home near the capital Tegucigalpa to tackle different projects, from building the complexs school to installing a freshwater well to this years project of constructing a girls dorm facility.
The group, which included Pastor Luis Molina and his wife Luz, Mark and Shawna Tittle, Eggie and Mina Maldonado and Ruben Velichko, spent eight days building and installing bathroom cabinets, creating and sanding tables and benches and bonding with the orphans.
This was Luz Molinas first trip to Honduras, and the experience was indescribable, she said, adding that shed like to bring her kids with her next time.
You get a different feeling there, she said. Its not something you cant get from looking at pictures. That was the best feeling to me.
This was her husbands fourth year visiting the orphanage, but probably the best trip, he said.
Thats because a lot of the focus shifted from physical construction to spiritual relationship building.
This years experience gave me a better purpose for why we go, Luis Molina said. This year, we realized the greatest project is the kids.
Molinas favorite thing was to spend time with the two dozen orphans, whether it was playing checkers, kicking around the soccer ball (the Woodburn volunteers brought the children tennis shoes and soccer balls from the U.S.) or simply talking. There has also been more focus on another project that supports individual orphans when they get too old for the childrens home.
Were partnering with other churches around the U.S. to provide the children with a transitional project that gives them the tools to introduce them into society, explained Molina. We want to encourage the kids that they can pursue a career and well help them out, so theyll have hope.
He gave the example of Junior, a 20-year-old orphan who was sponsored by the Woodburn churchs Sunday school to get through electrician school. Now he is working to become a welder, so the church bought him a $400 welding machine, which will change his life, Molina said.
With that machine, he can realize his goals and it provides a path for a better future, Molina said, adding that Juniors dreams include buying his own house and land.
It hasnt been easy supporting the orphans over the years, but the church has managed to do so through individual donations and fundraisers, such as a mission auction.
Its lots of work but it has changed so many lives, Molina said, also referring to the work volunteers take on while visiting Honduras.
While most volunteers speak minimal Spanish, the primary language of Honduras, Molina said that doesnt matter.
Taking people who dont speak Spanish, Ive learned that you dont need words to express love or hope because its a matter of the heart to tell someone how much you care, Molina said, referring to his fellow volunteers hard work over the eight days at the orphanage.
I probably worked the least, he added jokingly.
Coming back to the U.S., Luz Molina admits shes more grateful for what she has.
The question they would always ask me is if I knew my parents, she said. It was really impactful. It really made me appreciate my parents. They were always there for me, and its a different perspective being there with the orphans.
The public is invited to Mission Sunday, when the Sunday service at Foursquare Church in Woodburn will focus on the Honduras mission trip, on Sept. 15. The service, which starts at 10 a.m., followed by an authentic Honduras meal.
You can have a taste of Honduras and learn how to join this ministry, Molina said. The greatest blessing for me as a minister is leading this ministry. We go and we always come back with blessings we never thought wed receive. It changes your heart.