2018 Team

2018 Team
2018 Team in the original church built for Suyapa

Sunday, January 31, 2016

36 Days to go!

The time is passing quickly. I hope you have been reading Francis's adventures! He is staying very busy in Honduras, and I know he is doing what he loves - helping with the medical brigades and working with children. Once the students are back in school at Santa Teresa's, we'll upload some photos of the work he and Marta are doing there to get ready for the student trip.

As we continue collecting materials to be distributed in Honduras, we will focus on large bottles of lotion, flip flops, and shoes for this week. Gently worn shoes are acceptable. Please feel free to continue bringing it any of the items we need, including soap and shampoo.

Thanks to all of you who are donating items! Keep in mind - we have our final tailgate on Friday, Feb. 5. We'll be serving grilled brat burgers and hot dogs during the basketball game in the Gehlen cafeteria. We'll also have beans, bars, and ice cream for a free will donation. Hope to see everyone there.
Today's Ride                  

Thursday, January 28, 2016

39 Days To Go!

Please read today's blog written by Francis. It is sad, but the reality in Honduras.

We continue to collect soap and shampoo this week; we'll add lotion, flip flops, and shoes next week. Please help us fill our bags for the poor people in Nueva Capital.


Santa Lucia

Hello to all.  I have once again just arrived back in Santa Lucia (about 30-35 minutes from Hospital San Felipe) where I went early this morning by bus.  The Tegus Rotary Club, Club Foot Brigade from the USA set-up shop on the 2nd floor of San Felipe (Ortho area) to begin seeing patients and then ultimately performing surgery on those selected. 

I was here 3 years ago with little Santos from Lavanderos, Montana de la Flor, who had some terribly deformed club feet.  Today was no exception.

Once off the bus, I had to walk a few blocks to get to San Felipe.  This area is on the boulevard La Paz, the same as the US Embassy just a few blocks away.  A huge bus and taxi hub.  I have been here so many times, but it is always different.  I just had to enter, be searched by security, and then I understood again what I like about this life.  I get to do or be part of things most people can just watch on TV or a documentary. 

Once inside I bought a chance from the Bomberos, local fire and paramedics, to hopefully win a vehicle, TV, and other prizes.  I’m not holding my breath.  I have ridden with the Bomberos from the Central station (paramedics) and there is absolutely no comparison, just like the ER’s in theUSA.  But…they do what they do and well.  Dick and Carolyn know (along with many others from our medical brigade to Nueva Capital) we, GMH, and MHL have provided them with many supplies, nebulizers and etc.  They are great friends, and will again be when the team arrives in Nueva Capital in March.

I wish American people could enter a place like this (Hospital Esquela University) is worse.  People lined up everywhere…some sitting, others standing and waiting to get an appointment (in the future) and/or get a consult. Many of these people line up around 5 am in the morning and may not be seen until later in the afternoon and then only to return another day if they get an appointment.

I got a quick cup of coffee and then went to the 2nd floor where Orthopedics is located.  Boy what a mob of people.  Of course there are other clinics on the same floor.  I met my friend Sandy (American) who is having some kids examined and hopefully treated by this team.  I stood back and watched but I could only do this for awhile.  I had to mix with the people that had brought their kids from wherever to be seen and hopefully treated by the Gingo(s) doctors.  I cannot tell you what it is liked to see the patients of these little kids gaze in wonder knowing that maybe…just maybe…their kid will be selected for surgery.

It’s a grueling process, one that lacks reason for us Americans, in how they (the San Felipe staff) go about registering and then calling the families when it is their time to see the US doctors.  Many others come with kids that don’t have club feet, but hope, maybe hope, their kid can be seen.  It is this reason I do this.  I know that many of the families will not get the answer they hoped for, but, they had the chance.  Many times after a day like this I just want to go hit a tree with my fist.  I cannot help, but only so few.  But, you get up again and go do the same thing the next day.  For that will bring new challenges that maybe, just maybe then you can help.  You can never give up hope.  There is always tomorrow.

It met families from throughout Honduras today.  All very poor.  For all those have been with us in San Felipe, and especially Hospital Esquela you know these are the only places (in this part of Honduras) the poor can get care and treatment.

Most patients today were kids, but a number of adults.  Kids and families from many locations.  These were Lenca, (indigenous)from la Mosquitia (indigenous), others from La Paz, La Esperanza and other indigenous.

Sadly I did not have a camera, but I will get some photos from my friend Sandy.  One little girl got really attached to me.  I saw her quickly once I got on the 2nd floor.  She looked indigenous (which she is) and looked to me that maybe she had a cleft lip operation in the past.  I was wrong.  She did have a bad club foot, but also was missing fingers on both hands, and had other fingers joined together on one of her hands.  I will get that photo and send to all one day.  Her family is from La Esperanza and is being hosted by World Vision, which I know, and is a quality program.  I hope to see her again tomorrow or after surgery (which for is doubtful).  Ondina is following a 10 year old girl from Mosquitia that has no family.  Sad case.  Sandy is handling this.

So to sum up this day.  Gut wrenching.  But that is why I go and I will return again tomorrow and again wherever we can help.  Thanks for the opportunity you give me to help. 

Gehlen team, you will also see poverty like you have never seen.  God bless to all.  I will send another message another day.

Peace.   Mr. Francis

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

40 Days To Go!

I encourage you to read Francis's blog below. He shares his day with you.

Let's have a big turn-in day with bars of soap and bottles of shampoo!

Hi guys.  I am recently back in Santa Lucia after traveling by bus, taxi, taxi, taxi again and then bus back to Santa Lucia.  I am getting really good at the buses.  The taxi's, I still have to be careful.

Anyway, Julio and 3 of his sons along with 2 other guys and Rafael (truck driver) left Acote this morning at 0430 hrs to come to Cerro de Plata to pick up food, notebooks, clothes and etc., sent by TFJO.

Marta was sick and was not able to join us. Olga and Ondina were there.  Great day.  Photos, but I will not send them until later since I was not able to copy the SIM card in Julios phone.

All were very happy.  I think something like 450 boxes of food, boxes of clothes and 1100 notebooks.  Plus other items .  Also, Dick, I gave Julio 2 of the special nebulizer's GMH brought last year (battery powered) for an ambulance from Guyapy that bring most of the people (kids especially) to Tegus.  Now they will be able to continue to provide neb treatments along the way.  Also, many prenatal vitamins and other meds.  Liquid vitamins for little Wendy.

Hot day in Tegus, here in Santa Lucia cool and windy.  Very dry.  NO rain!  I may go on the bus again tomorrow to San Felipe Hospital for the 1st day of the club food brigade.  I will decide later, but chances are good I will go for a couple of hours.  Not sure if I will be able to join the Honduran Military for their medical brigade along the road to Danli on Saturday.  It will depend on how well Marta improves.

Have a great day.

Mr. Francis

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

41 Days To Go!

Francis is busy doing all kinds of things in Honduras. Today he and Marta visited with Serma, the place where they will buy our wood. This company will oven dry the wood for approximately 6 days to get rid of the moisture. They then treat it with a special type of chemical and put it into a cylinder that pressurizes the chemical into the wood. That takes 1/2 day. Francis and Marta agreed on a price with the company. Francis will have our wood delivered on March 5 or 6. It will be in place when we arrive.

We have a tailgate coming up on Friday, Feb. 5, during the Gehlen vs. Hinton basketball game. Come and join us for a great meal and some camaraderie with the mission team. You can also check out our display of past mission trips.

Do you have any friends or family members that would like to know what we are doing? Please pass along the link to our blog. You can now find the link on the Gehlen Catholic School website under News. We also have a link on the Gehlen Facebook page.

Our missioners from Remsen St. Mary's, Whiting, and Carroll Kuemper are also hoping to collect various items from their students and parishioners. We'll need lots of donations to fill 72 duffle bags.

REMEMBER; Even though you are welcome to donate all the things we need to carry into Honduras, this week we are trying to focus on regular-sized bars of soap and large bottles of shampoo.

Thank you to all our wonderful supporters. Without your support, we could not have a successful mission trip.

Monday, January 25, 2016

42 Days To Go!

This week we are encouraging everyone to bring regular-sized bars of soap and bottles of shampoo for our gift bags. One memory I have from a past mission trip is watching a boy get a bar of soap. He kept putting it up to his nose. When I asked Sr. Juanita why is was doing that with the soap, she said he was enjoying the scent of the soap. He had probably never had a scented bar of soap. It was a wonderful gift to him.

We are winding down our raffle ticket sale but still accepting donations for our projects. Soon we will announce the cash winners of our raffle.

Sometimes it is hard to visualize the size of something we talk about. Thus, Mrs. Christoffel and her math students are going to use colored painters' tape to tape off a home's dimensions in the lobby of the school. Students will be able to stand in the "rooms" of a house that is the size of the ones we'll be building in Honduras. With a different colored tape, they will also show everyone the dimensions of one of the homes we replaced last year. Watch for this in the lobby.

By the end of next week the CLT will have boxes that are decorated to look like our homes in Honduras in strategic places around the school. We'll be using those boxes for your donated items.

As you can see, we have all kinds of things going on. I hope you'll join us on our journey by reading the blog every day. Don't forget to send comments or questions for me to answer.
25 Enero 2016
Teimpo:  0925 hrs
Location:  Santa Lucia, outside Tegucigalpa, Honduras

Carolyn.  I received your message and have successfully figured out how to use the blog again after months of inactivity.  I had to answer a couple of questions once I entered the ID and password.  I had to select Honduras, enter my cellphone number and wait for a text message giving me a code which I then entered and then I was allowed into the blog to post messages.  I've had to do this a number of times since my arrival to access my email accounts.  I have to write down the codes because sometime in the future I will be asked to enter them again, depending of what I'm doing.  I guess its all for security.

Carolyn, as a heads up to your team that may use a credit or debit card while in Honduras, they should contact their bank, credit card company and tell them they will be out of the country working in Honduras.  I've had to do this the past 3 years.

The weather has been unseasonably cool and very windy.  Yesterday I was wearing my stocking cap and my sweatshirt, as were other people living and visiting Santa Lucia.  Puzzling...we are only 4800 feet in elevation.  Last weekend in la montana de la flor area it was blistering hot in the sun.  Oh well, such is life.

Later.  Today is special day for my brother Dick.

Mr. Francis


Sunday, January 24, 2016

43 Days To Go!

Sunday, January 24, 2016

I thought it might be fun to kick off our 2016 mission trip by taking all of you through our preparations. Our mission team needs everyone's help in many ways. We need your prayers now and during our trip. We also need your help in collecting various items that we will sort and distribute to the poorest families of Nueva Capital. We will be sure to post photos of our missioners as they distribute the items to these families. We want all of you to take the mission journey with us!

Each week we will be asking for specific items that we need. Please feel free to bring other items on the list, even if they are not the focus item.

This week we will collect regular sized bars of soap

and large bottles of shampoo.

Please check the blog daily as I will update it with what we are doing to get ready for the trip. I hope you will become a follower of our blog so you can post comments, especially while the team is in Honduras.

Sunday, February 17, the mission team and parents had a final meeting to go over the information everyone needs to take part in the mission trip. Missioners were even given a specific list of items to pack for themselves so we will have plenty of space in the black duffle bags for your donated items. Every missioner also carries a second black duffle bag filled with items for the families in Honduras.

Francis Seivert has been in Honduras for almost three weeks now. Both he and Marta are busy getting quotes for the items we'll need to build the homes and bunk beds. They also need to line up our buses and drivers, make sure we have water to drink and bathe, plan the meals, and much more. Lots of preliminary work has to be done to ensure a successful mission trip.

Thanks for joining us on this journey. I look forward to sharing with you as we put our faith into action!