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Andy’s December 2014 – Report

Friends:

           Merry Christmas and we hope that all of you have a blessed Holiday Season. Sorry this will be so long but I am “brim full of news”. I will try (somewhat unsuccessfully) to be as brief as possible).

December Trip:

          Todd and I got home yesterday from his annual visit with Victor and Felipe to 8 of the villages where cisterns have been built. The purpose is to remind recipients  that repayment money is spent in their village to build more cisterns and that if money is not available then it can be paid to Felipe later. Their discussion of repayment is handled masterfully with no pressure and a sincere concern for the financial condition of the families. For me the most poignant moment was when a 70+ year old gentleman with failing vision, and I learned later failing health, work pants, t-shirt, and no shoes, brought $100 to pay on his cistern. I had to believe that he was NOT paying out of his abundance but because of his conviction to do what he felt was right.

         As we traveled to the meetings we found there was a marked absence of the bags of chile peppers stacked alongside the road waiting for the truck from Mexico City to come and buy them. Unfortunately this only confirmed our fear that this is a very poor crop year and that corn yields are very poor as well. Because of the need for corn, many are forced to plant winter corn to supply food for their families.

         When we visited Felipe’s family at Nuevo Becal, we saw his field of about 2-3 acres of Black Beans which he hopes to harvest in about 2 months and sell in Xpujil for a cash crop. Unfortunately they were in need of a good spraying with insecticide and we were able to get that done. He, like many others will plant some winter corn, so we helped him get those fields sprayed prior to planting.

         We had opportunities to visit several of the families in Castilla Brito that we have known for several years. Juan Guzman has already planted several fields of corn and has adapted some of the things we have encouraged, such as closer spacing of plants and fertilizer and pesticide use for weed and insect control. We learned that Efrian Vasquez (who was a young lad of of 10 when I started visiting) will be getting married in June to Magdalena Perez. It was a good time of worship at their church and a good time to visit several of the other families that are just close friends.

         Todd has some groups scheduled for the 2015 trips including 4 teams that will come from the Mid-South.Those dates are May 12-19, May 26-June 2, June16-23, and June 23-30.  I hope many that receive this mail will be a part of one of those trips. It goes without saying that it is always a great joy for me to be with Todd and visit brothers and sisters in Christ there. I am reminded they continue to be in need of our prayerful support and encouragement.

Hammocks: I was able to buy 4 hammocks from the ladies in Castilla for $80 each. If you need one please let me know soon. I would like to sell all of these and buy more when I return.

Blog/Website: After lots of hard work by Joe Sills and Clay Combs the NEW site is up and running!! Please check it out and send your comments via the site. I hope churches will link this to their website. It’s purpose is to get the word out to folks that may be interested in being a part of this ministry. Tell your friends.

Xpujil Reunion I : Mark your calendars for Wednesday, February 25 for a get-together. Details later…….

Memorials : are being received for Betty Rainey, Charles Sullivan, Enid Powell, and Rainer Combs with all funds used to build more cisterns. Make check to First Presbyterian and mail to me at 5691 Tibbs Rd., Brownsville, TN 38012.

             There!! I warned you it was going to be long. Bless you anyway.

Andy

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