The team from Bentonville, Arkansas, led by Johan Eriksson, spent the week in El Suntular, Yoro, about two hours southeast of the mission. The team leader, and former team member on some of HBDM's medical/dental teams, has been leading the men from this team in a Bible study on the book "Radical," by David Platt, which calls for Christians to live out their faith in the radical way that Jesus calls us to. In an effort to live out their faith in just this way, eleven of the men from the Bible study committed to serve with HBDM in an effort to build houses for some of the most impoverished people. This trip was the first international mission trip for every team member, except for Johan.
The team undertook an effort to start construction on three houses. There was a lot to learn as HBDM has not hosted a construction team anytime in the last five years, at least. Much more goes into building a house than one would think, especially when equipment is limited. Team members participated in sifting gravel to make concrete, mixing concrete by hand, carrying wood down the side of a mountain (literally) to make the framework for part of the house, and carrying and laying an uncountable number of bricks. The team was led in the construction efforts by a Honduran contractor and they were assisted by other hired Honduran workers. In 3.5 days of work the team and workers were able to finish about half of each house, which is pretty amazing. The Honduran workers will continue the work until the houses are finished and then the houses will go to families in need, with special consideration given to single mothers in the community. These families do not have the means by which to buy these homes or the education to find good jobs so, additionally, HBDM is working to help these families find a trade or develop a skill that will enable provide for themselves.
In addition to providing physical care in the form of homes, the team also worked hard to provide spiritual care to the people of El Suntular. Each morning and afternoon two members from the team went out on foot to make house to house visits with the assistance of a translator. By the end of the week, the team was able to visit every home in the community and provide spiritual encouragement and share the great news of our Savior. Another way the team invested in this community, was by helping transport a young boy to the hospital who had been kicked in the head by a horse. The boy was bleeding from his mouth, nose, and ears and the local clinic and local hospital both refused to treat him because of the severity of his condition. The team members had very little money on them but they contributed what they had and were able to buy ambulance transportation to send the boy to a hospital in San Pedro Sula, a few hours away. Thanks be to God, the boy was treated and returned home the following day. Overall it was an exhausting, but rewarding week, one that, God-willing, will impact both the men serving and the community of El Suntular for a long time to come.