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Saturday, May 28th

It's been far to long since my last blog.  A month ago we finished the project in Ciudad Cortes.  I was there earlier this week and Pastor Francisco said again how pleased and grateful his church is for what our teams were able to do there.  It's a bit misleading to refer to that project as a "parsonage" project because we also rewired the sanctuary and church kitchen, Stuccoed (sp?) and painted the exterior walls of the sanctuary, rewired the bottom floor of the (now two story) parsonage.  We also plastered and painted the first floor of the parsonage.  The eight teams that came to work with us there did a wonderful job, not only on the work site, but also with getting involved with the families at the church.  I, personally, couldn't be more pleased with how everything came together.  This was also the first project for the the new version of our CRMP crew.  Pedro and Harold have quickly found their place and are a blessing to the rest of us and the teams.  We left the heat of Ciudad Cortes knowing that many new friendships have been made and the church has certainly been strengthened by that.

We have relocated for the Summer to Alajuela.  We have 23 teams coming between now and the middle of August who will work on three different projects.  Our second team is working (in the rain) right now on the multi-purpose building in downtown Alajuela.  The first floor of the building will be parking spaces, the second floor will be a kitchen/fellowship hall and the third floor will be a large space for the growing youth group.  On Tuesday I'm heading to Palmares (45 minutes away) with Hugo to get everything ready for the team from Missouri that will break ground on the parsonage at the church there.  In the meantime we will have teams working on the home that the DS, Douglas Mejias, and his family live in here in Alajuela.  It's going to be a challenging Summer to say the least, but I'm confident that when late August rolls around, we'll be pleased with all that has been done.

Our mission teams from our church in San Isidro are hard at working selling tamales and lunches twice a month in order to raise money for the three mission trips that we'll be going on this Fall.  We thought we were going to Birmingham Alabama to work in the inner city, but in light of the tornadoes, it looks like we'll be doing recovery work instead.  Two of the churches that will host us there are coming this summer to work with us.  It will be exciting to be with them here in anticipation of our trip there later in the year.  After the Alabama trip we have a team headed to Cuba to explore what a relationship between our church and the Methodist churches in Cuba might look like.  This will be a small team made up of the leadership of our congregation here.  Finally, we'll be heading to El Salvador to work with Brian Dubberly, who is also from FUMC Rocky Mount (my home church).  They have a construction project that we will be helping with there for a week.  In all, there are 40 members of our church who are going on a foreign mission trip this year.  That's almost half of our worshippers on a typical Sunday morning!  I'm thrilled that they have embraced, not only the "receiving" part of mission, but the "sending" part as well.

Honorio, the Cabecar pastor that I wrote about in my last blog, came to visit Yolanda and I with his sone Josefath.  It was wonderful to have them in our home for a few days.  We had dinner with Curtis (also from the last blog) and his family, visited with Yolanda's family on the farm and stopped at the beach for a few hours so I could team 10 year old Josefath how to surf!  I'm pretty sure he may be the world's first Cabecar surfer!  We talked more about the projects that Honorio has in mind on the reservation and it looks like CRMP, with some donations from our partners, is going to be able to help Honorio see some of those projects come to fruition.  As has happened several times over the course of CRMP's short history, God has seen fit to connect us with some amazing pastors/ministries here.  It is a privilege to be able to partner with these wonderful servants.

Yolanda and I are both doing well.  Anticipating a busy summer but excited about the challenges that it will bring.  We are so blessed to be here and to see the way that the Body of Christ is growing, both in number and strength.  Thank you for holding us up in prayer.  It's hard to find words to express how grateful we are to all those who support the two of us and CRMP.  God bless.


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