Stanford mission group feels 'blessed' after 10-day trip

July 23, 2004|EMILY BURTON

STANFORD - Members of a Stanford Baptist Church mission group returned this week from a 10-day trip to Honduras. While they were working to help others, participants of the mission said they were actually the ones blessed.

"We think we're going to help them, but they you're humbled to the point where you see the world as Jesus wants you to," said missionary and youth minister Aaron Stamper. "... There's nothing that can describe going and loving somebody."

The group stayed in a hotel in La Entrada, Honduras and used the trip to visit local schools and make repairs at a Youth for Christ Camp.

At the schools, the group helped with bible study and prayer. The missionaries also helped run a vacation bible school.

It was wonderful how receptive the schools were to the missionaries, said Stamper, "how appreciative (the children) are of things."

"It's amazing when you have and entire school bent in prayer," added Stamper. "...In our case, the missionaries, we're the ones that get the blessing."


The group also helped restore running water to the youth camp. Dennis Spangler, who went with his daughter Leya, worked with fellow missionaries to repair the water pump and old well.

"It was great," Spangler said of the trip. "The people were friendly, of course, it's all Spanish," with very few English-speakers to be found. "We got along fine, we never felt threatened." Two local translators traveled with the group, he said.

Trip had a few minor mishaps

Beyond the language barrier, the trip was not without minor bumps - the group had their fair share of twisted ankles, a blown-out knee and some nausea. But some participants said the group felt led to that country for their 2004 trip.

"With this trip, everything was just perfect for what we wanted," Stamper said, like available dates and locations. "And once we got there, it was evident that's where God wanted our team to be."

The trip was financed through personal donations, fund raisers and the church collection.

"We couldn't have done it without our church family," said Stamper.

But a mission trip closer to home would have been just as successful, Stamper added. While many consider a mission trip synonymous with traveling to foreign countries, that is not always the case. The need for God's message and a little hard work can be found in Lincoln or Boyle counties as well Stamper said.

"We think of missions as being foreign missions, but our mission field is in our backyard," said Stamper. "It's great to be able to travel and do those things, but we've got needy people right here in our own county."

When asked if they would go on another trip next year, both Stamper and Spangler laughed.

"You'd have to have a little time to rest up before you can answer that question," said Spangler.

Stamper agreed. "It's a bit early to tell. I think I have some recovering to do first."

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