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Home sweet home

Home sweet home

The first place we went in Guatemala was a small, impoverished area in the town of Chimaltenango. While there, I asked one of our hosts if she knew any people who had gone to the U.S. She said that she had and told me of one woman who left, worked three jobs in the U.S. and now lives in a big house. I found this suspicious because none of the Guatemalan immigrants I know in the U.S. live in big houses. Then I saw what most of the people who attend her church live in. As part of our mission, we built three ‘houses’. In all honesty, they were more like huts or sheds. We built them of 12 foot sheets of corrugated aluminum held up and together by 3 inch posts. They had no insulation, electricity or running water. The floor was bare, packed dirt and the new owners did not mind if things weren’t square or level. While these ‘one-room houses’ were an improvement over what they lived in before, by our standards, they were barely sufficient for a dog. But the new owners were excited and very appreciative. An older man of about 72, thanked God for all our work and the blessing of having such a nice new home. It was very humbling to see someone appreciate so much, something I considered so insufficient. The cost of our materials was just $550 per house, but by his reaction, you would have thought we had built him a million-dollar mansion. Now I understand how a woman who came to the U.S. and worked 3 jobs could live in a big house. I am sure that by our standards, the house she lies in is not big, but it has a solid roof, electricity, clean running water, insulation and a non-dirt floor. Even the smallest houses here have these. We are very blessed to have these things; many of which we take for granted.

Mission Partners

  • Holy Trinity Lutheran Church: Knowing, Loving and Sharing Christ
    Holy Trinity Lutheran Church: Knowing, Loving and Sharing Christ