On our final work day in Honduras, we returned to the House Construction Site to move more dirt to be used for filling in the walls of the new house.
Our team had a pretty good system going: Father Felix would drive five of us down the road a few miles to the dirt mine (Near the construction site, the dirt was too rocky for the family to use for their walls).
Once we filled the bed up with good dirt, we would head back up the mountain to the house construction site.
|Tom (left) and Brother Roch empty dirt out of the bed of the pickup truck.|
Upon returning to the house construction site, we'd dump the dirt on the side of the road. Father Felix and his five compadres would then "turn n' burn" back down the mountain for more dirt.
|Brother Roch and Rick filling their bags with dirt to take down the hill.|
From the dirt pile on the side of the road, bags were filled to transport the dirt down the narrow path to the new house.
Throughout the week, the Honduran family we were helping worked a long side us every day. Without complaint - even with joy - they participated in the same physical, manual labor as us. This young lady made multiple trips up to the road, and back down with heavy bags of dirt - all in flip flops!
Hector, Deree, and this little boy made multiple trips up and down the trail, carrying bags of dirt as big as themselves to the new home.
|The bags of dirt were dumped into piles next to the house. Here the dirt was mixed with water to form the clay used for filling the gaps between the slats of wood.|
The process to get enough dirt down to the construction site was difficult and slow. Each trip, or "turn n' burn" in the pickup truck, required about 35 minutes from the time one truckload of dirt was offloaded until the truck returned with more dirt.
|Rick, Allen and Charlene (below) treating the wood slats to prevent rotting.|
|From left to right: Deree, El Hefe (the boss), Deacon John, and Carey.|
The universal language of love - combined with some broken spanish here and there - dissolved all language and cultural barriers. It was tough saying goodbye to our new friends.
|Father Paschal, Charlene, and Russ inspect the new roof that our team installed for a young mother living in downtown Comayagua. Last night, it poured for hours, but all was dry inside.|
|"La Catedral," built in the 1600s, located in downtown Comayagua. After work on Friday, Father Paschal took our crew into town to go site seeing.|
|Sunrise at Casa Guadalupe|
Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved in whom I delight; I shall place my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not contend nor cry out, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets. A bruised reed he will not break, a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory. And in his name, the Gentiles will hope."
|The 2016 Mary Our Queen Honduras Mission Team pose for one final picture with the Friars. Photo was taken in the garden at Casa Guadalupe just before we headed out to the airport.|
In the words spoken through Isaiah, revisited in today's gospel reading from Matthew, we were reminded of the need for mercy and justice in our own lives, our own homes, and in our world. As our mission team "turns n' burns" back to the United States, we were reminded that you need not look very hard, nor travel to a foreign country, to find injustice. Sharing a sandwich, or giving a simple word of encouragement to someone in need may be all it takes for Christ to keep the light of life smoldering in a suffering soul.