March 2020 Conchshell Chronicles

Schools In Session

Photo: One of our first schools- Srumlaya 1987

We have begun our 35th year educating  children on the Rio Coco in Nicaragua/Honduras.  Our supervisors are downriver today with the team from the Ukrainian American Church Atlanta showing the Jesus movie, and  working with our teachers and pastors. We are very excited about this year and the fruit from seeds we have planted for three decades.

All of our teachers, except for Eusebio and Oswaldo (who have worked with us since the 80’s) are our former students. All the pastors in our communities are also our former students. We have numerous former students who are nurses, and many that are workers in Puerto Cabeza and Managua. We even had one student who became the governor of the Regional Government.

Have we made a difference?

Most of the mothers and fathers in our eight communities are our former     students. Did they receive anything in their daily Bible classes that is impacting their families? Are they better neighbors? Are they known as loving people to their    extended families? Are they looking to God for their needs rather than the sukias who represent the multiple demonic spirits that have influenced life on the river for centuries?

We think so. We hope our impact is even more than we can see, which is usually the case.

There is much opportunity for any of you to get involved this year in our        outreach to these precious people in one of the most remote regions in the      Western Hemisphere. I am not exaggerating by saying that folk. It’s still a Fourth World environment on the lower Coco River and it takes hours to get there in a fast boat.

May I mention a few needs that you may want to participate in? We have a very extensive website with links to our secure PayPal page that is set up for specific giving to several areas.

We need to purchase school  supplies this month for 1600 students and about 75 teachers.

You may join this effort by becomes a sponsor of school supplies for $25 a month. Here is the link to this page: School Supplies

Each month we spend many days downriver working with our schools. The trip downriver from Waspam usually requires 60 gallons of gasoline and 20 gallons of diesel for our cargo truck. In addition, we have a small boat in Sawa that is used each day to take our high school students from Boom, Klampa, and Sawa down to Living Creek where the high school is located. It’s a four hour walk or a 30-minute boat ride. In the rainy season the trail is impassable. Attendance drops. That is why we purchased the 15 hp motor last year.

Photo: Danilo, Lukas, Mikaela, Tom & Nutie, in the boat downriver.

You may join the Coco River Transit by donating $50 a month to this worthy cause. Here is the link: Coco River Transit

Our office in Waspam is the place where we prepare all the exams, reports to the Ministry of Education, teacher training materials, and classroom lessons. We have purchased numerous copiers, computers, and generators over the years to continue supplying the classrooms with these needed materials. During the war years, we had a mimeograph machine in Auka Honduras where we printed the exams, and a few times I actually flew our airplane to the Coco River and dropped these exams out the window to Truman who was waiting in front of his house! Exciting times.

Photo: Our office/conference center/recording studio in Waspam

You may become a sponsor of the office for $75 per month and help us keep the school supplies with teaching material. Here is the link: Office Supplies

We have built many school buildings over the years, and we are responsible to maintain all the schools in our district. That means roofing panels, fencing, door hinges/locks, lumber, and cement. It is an ongoing project. Here is one of our first building projects in 1989 in Srumlaya during the war years.

Please consider joining our School Maintenance team. Look here: School Maintenance

We pay teacher salaries each month to more than 35 teachers. Here are some of our teacher receiving their copy of A Purpose Driven Life.

We would love you to become a teacher sponsor for $250 per month. They are worthy of your prayers and support. Here is the page: Teacher Salaries

.There are more ways to give as well. As the stock market fluctuates this month, isn’t it nice to know that our eternal investments will never lose value and are stored up in Heaven awaiting our arrival!                      Michael


 Lamb Bleatings

I am sitting in a Japanese garden filled with the peace and Beauty of rocks, pond, herbs, sweet singing birds, my favorite plants and flowers of many shapes, sizes, and     colors.  Reminds me of the garden my dad was always working on to produce more (to eat) and make it look better. He was  constantly weeding.  (Lots of analogies from this).

My father Ronald was an amazing gardener, active investor, learner, reader, tile layer, served in the U.S. Air Force, then became a federal worker, plumber, wood maker, electrician, mechanic, athlete, best involved grandpa, loyal friend, fisherman, & golfer. He could do anything and everything. He served, gave generously and always there to help in whatever capacity he could.

Now at 82 he is reduced to someone who can hardly see, walk, and needs help with virtually every aspect of his physical existence. Very difficult for a man who could not wait for the light of dawn so he could pop up and start meeting his daily goals.  He enjoyed seeing things to be just so ... a perfectionist that had many ideals.  He was disciplined and always on time or a few minutes early...   considerate and respectful of others in one sense and on the other super graceless and grouchy over others not living up to standards he considered to be common sense.

I am currently waiting for my dad as he has his dialysis.  He usually starts up at 5:30-9:30. I bring him in and set up his warm    blankets then he gets hooked up.  We then have our “picnic” of boiled eggs, coffee, & a treat and he falls asleep and I leave to do some work (like write this) in this beautiful Japanese garden that reminds me of my dad.  Slowly we have been watching my dad careless about this life. He now says to me each time he has to go to dialysis, “No need go.”  Or if it’s raining , “ok then let’s stay home .”  The Zest and appeal of this world has lost its magic and now he looks forward to a better future.

The reality of heaven gets more promising as this life starts getting blurry, tasteless, painful, and full of hassles in his mind with all the basic abilities of life taken away.

My purpose being here is to set smaller goals for my father and give him focus on the the present and to remind him that his role is obviously not done here and when it is he will leave and go on to heaven .

We have had hopeful small victories that have caused us to rejoice together. I love my dad so much and it pains me to see him struggle.  Yet I know this too is part of the process of my ability to be able to let go and allow God to be trusted,      knowing that He has appointed our time of birth and death and everything in between.  I trust and give myself to the   process allowing God to also give to me what I need to do best here and now.

The rest of my family working together back home is a comfort to my soul. While I am here in Honolulu Michael    having his alone time with his brother Randy and sister Glinda who just had another stroke and still is unable to walk or hardly speak. Please pray for her! It is a season to tend to the familial issues at hand. 

I am grateful for the opportunities and the abilities to do and be.  God is my strength and strong tower and there I take safe refuge and peace.  To Him be all honor, power and glory.                                           Laura


Let’s Give Thanks!

1) That God is here and answers prayers!

2)  For the ministry team visiting our villages on the Rio Coco this week, showing the Jesus movie.

3) For God’s provision in our lives!


Fire Your Spiritual Arrows

A special prayer request

My sister Glinda suffered a stroke last week and while in the hospital they discovered she has leukemia. She is at Florida Hospital in Orlando, and please pray for total healing for both issues.  Thanks                


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