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While I’ve never blogged about our mission trips before, this was not our first time doing mission work in Belize. Since having kids, I have taken a step back from mission opportunities, but Justin has continued visits multiple times a year, especially before the pandemic lockdowns. This trip was also unique in the sense that we decided to take the kids on their first-ever mission trip!
Our church began ministering in the small villages of Camalote and Roaring Creek in Belize in 2016. The summer of 2017 was my first mission trip to Belize and this trip was my first visit back since that summer. The primary focus of this trip was for a small group of leaders from our church to visit the area and assess the needs; especially since our church has not been able to visit since before the pandemic.
Throughout the years, we have been able to keep up with our friends that live in the area, but it’s no replacement for being able to fellowship and minister in person. Here’s a look at the things we were able to do during our trip!
I’m not apologizing for the photo overload!
Our flight was scheduled for departure at 8 am on a Wednesday morning which put us leaving home at 5:30 am! The kids didn’t miss a beat from the time we left the house, both awake for four hours of flying, but knocked out on our drive from Belize City to Camalote.
We settled in on the first day at camp, N&E Bold Belize. This hostel-style home is operated by our friends Nelson and Ethel who are native Belizeans. Nelson and Ethel always make us feel right at home. I can’t recommend them enough. Ms. Ethel provides a full home-cooked meal service also! She welcomed us that night with Belizean-style stew beef, rice, and, my favorite, homemade flour tortillas!
Judah was super excited to have bunk beds and hang out in the hammocks! We spent the afternoon settling in, arguing with Delta about our lost luggage and lost carry-ons (how does that even happen??). Thankfully, all was settled and we got our luggage the next day!
Day two began with a full breakfast at camp followed by a visit to Camalote Baptist Church. We visited one-on-one with Pastor Floyd for the first time since 2019. He expressed his concerns with the current problems in the church — physically and spiritually.
He explained the need to repair the roof of the church and also fix the corresponding leak and mold issues. We (our church) were able to make arrangements and cover expenses to have to roof properly repaired to rid their church of that worry and allow them to focus on reaching others with the Gospel.
Brother Floyd proudly showed us the kitchen that has been newly installed on the church grounds; another project funded by our church. He explained to us how this facility would be used for a weekly food ministry for needy children and families in the neighborhood.
Joanna made herself at home with some of the kids toys during our visit.
After visiting the church, we wanted to continue our conversation with Pastor Floyd. We invited him to lunch and asked him to introduce us to somewhere great to eat. He directed us to this Chinese restaurant in Belmopan, the capital city of Belize.
We enjoyed a delicious meal and talked about ministry opportunities in our churches. We discussed similarities among our congregations and how we could serve Camalote Baptist Church in the future.
If you know me, I won’t eat somewhere new without taking a picture first!
That afternoon, we visited with Derrick and Esther Roberts at their home where they host “The Boys Country Club.” Derrick and Esther take boys and girls through this program to help them become Godly members of society. They learn how to care for animals, participate in rodeo competitions, go camping, learn how to hunt, and (most importantly) learn the importance of living a God-centered life.
Churches like ours have partnered with this couple to help provide resources and opportunities to pour the Gospel into the children of the Roaring Creek community.
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