Thursday – Game Day

It was our final day to meet our goal and it began early. The weather was nice and sunny and the crew was ready for success. With close to half the fencing up we were focused on completing the rest of the fencing and the soccer goals. We all worked feverishly and as noon approached, the sun was beating down and taking a toll on many of the workers. We broke for lunch at Burger King and refueled. A total team effort got the CISNA Soccer Field completed at about 7:30 as dark settled on the orphanage. The kids were excited and began to gather at the court. That’s when the true meaning of our work, and God’s plan, surfaced. The joy in the kids faces and the excitement we all saw was powerful. It was a moving moment. Regardless of each of these kids trials and tribulations or the difficulties that brought them to CISNA, they all felt like a million bucks at that time. That’s what all our work was about!!

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Monday!!

Today was a good day!! We spent the day at sisna orphanage setting posts and welding pipe to begin working on the soccer court( soccer is so big down here!!!) we are all sore and tired but God does have a mission for us! When we got back to the base we all jumped into the pool and played a mean game of death water polo!! ( basically a game of three on three basketball in a pool with tackle football trown in for good measure. The Gringo’s won victoriously vs the salvadorians !!!! Tuesday we are heading back to sisna for a half day . then back to the YWAM base to support Jon Snyders homeless ministry. We will be helping the homeless men get washed up give them a new set of clothes and feed them some lunch. Tuesday night we will stuff and deliver 150 sack lunches to hand out to the roughest of the rough homeless in san salvador.

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Sunday funday!!

Well we started out the day at Jon Snyders church. We were welcomed with open arms and ear phones for the english translation!! After church we got to work!! we had to break down two large concrete basket ball hoops we are now prepared to start the construction of the soccer field!! all he guys are getting along great and will all be sore tomorrow!! (swinging a 16lb sledge is a killer) we got to take a dip in the pool when we got back from the orphanage it was refreshing!! No sun yet ( might rain all week!!) so our savage tans will not be as savage!!!  Take care we will write tomorrow!!! Todd-O

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day 1 mens trip ( the fanny pack kids)

Trip.started.out well.with.no travel.mess ups we made it to el salvador with all luggage intact! Matt has decided to wear his fanny pack to bed each night tomorrow we will.go to.church then start our large project which consists of buildi.g a soccer “court” at a local orphanage

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Reflections

I have been in this country for two weeks now. It has been a great honor to see how these people live and their struggles with things like being homeless, hungry, having no parents, etc. When we drive through town and we see all of the houses made of tin and looking shabby I don’t honestly feel anything. I see it as it is and I accept the fact that this is how people live when they have no money. I don’t judge, and I really don’t think about how it must feel to live like that. It feels like this is where I live and that I have seen this my whole life. I am not affected by the poverty here…until I actually get back to the base and think about what I have seen. I look back at the poverty, the homeless sleeping under trees, the beggers shaking cans, and the orphans who, when not talking to anyone, look so gloomy and sad. It is when I reflect back that I am saddened that I have lived in such a great country that I don’t think about the poor and needy enough. This trip has opened my eyes to the fact that I should thank God every day for the gifts he has given me and how blessed I am to have such a great life.

So far this trip I have done so many things and seen so much. I was touched the most when we fed the homeless on the streets. It was fun to have a competition making the meals the fastest, but actually watching the homeless scurry out of their sleeping spots to dash across the street for some food is so touching. I just can go to the refridgerator whenever I want and grab some food to satisfy my hunger, which, unfortunately, is not often hunger but boredom. But these people may eat only once every few days. Not once did I consider the fact that they may be on the streets because they are addicted to drugs or whatever their problems are. I just saw them as people who needed our help, and who, when they received it, were often so grateful. I was touched the most when one little old lady came to the truck in the middle of a mob of homeless asking for a bag of food. Unfortunately we had just run out, and we had no more to give. She took this fact that she missed another meal during the day so easily. She just nodded, smiled, said “Thank you”, “God bless you”, and blew us kisses. She was so cute and it saddened me that we could not feed her, let alone everyone. But this little old lady gave me courage. If she can handle not having food, then I think I should be able to handle a little bit of extra work or heat or whatever silly little things I complain about during the day.

I appreciate the possibility I have had to come to this country and to see what I have seen and to be encouraged and inspired by the people I have met and worked with here.

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The Epic Tale of a Day in El Salvador (from the perspective of Ben Myers)

We started off the day as usual, dragging our feet out of bed at 7 in the morning (around that time). We went to the dining area and had fresh fruit, cereal, and a variety of fruit juices. Today we were going to go to a water park with the kids from the orphanage of CISNA to play soccer, swim, and have a great time. The coolers were packed with our own hand-made lunches and headed out.

When we got to CISNA, we were greeted with the smiles of new and familiar faces. CISNA had drastically improved since last time I visited. I remembered a time when the place was crowded with over 100 orphans. A few years ago the paint of the cafeteria was chipping off, there were bare mattresses on the floor in the bedrooms, and the bathrooms were a mess. This year everything changed. there were around 40 or 50 kids this year. Everything had been repainted and refurbished. The beds had sheets and the bathrooms were much cleaner than the past. They had a working pool and John Snider had even set up a new computer lab. I couldn’t believe my eyes.

The kids and tios and tias ( the orphans called everyone this who wasn’t a kid) piled into the vans and headed for the water park. The water park wasn’t quite what I expected. I imaged a place similar to the water parks we had in America with giant wave pulls, water slides, and large crowds. This reminded me more of a large community pool. They had one pool, a soccer field, and a large pavilion. The water park was on a large hill with a great view of a bottomless lake. There were many volcanos and mountains containing vast amounts of lush vegetation and wildlife.

We spent most of our time attempting to compete in an embarrassing game of soccer. I tried to demonstrate my great athletic ability to the other players but failed. The gringos were crushed by the Salvadorians with a score of 1 to 4. During our game our director John sprained his ankle. We all hope he gets well soon.

Finally we left the water park and got a chance to go down to a dock and get a better look at the dock. We then headed back to the base and played a great game of water polo and had a great chicken dinner.

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Day 4 – Tuesday / From Jake

This is written by Jake Gregory.

Today we woke up around 9:00 am. Everyone was very happy that we had lots of pancakes for breakfast, along with bananas and strawberries. After we enjoyed our breakfast we sorted through all of the clothes that we donated to us. Shorty after we took in some of the homeless. Where each of us were goven jobs to do. The adults talked to the homless while Ben, Drew, and Susan cooked and served the food, and Nate and I stood at the door for security. As the homeless arrived they recieved a shower, food to eat, and new clothes.  After the homeless had left, and everything was put away we ate our food. After lunch some of the adults went to get food for later when we would make, and deliver food for the homeless. As we made the food for the homeless we had some competition amoung the helpers. Mainly the rivalry between Ben and I for the fastest sandwich bag opener ( were we ended up tying). Once we ran out of food to finish the meals we loaded up the pick-up truck, and handed food to the homeless. While we were on our route we got to in to downtown. While in downtown we had places were we had one or two people to feed, and others where we had people chasing us in crowds around 15 to 20. Towards the end of our route we had a huge crowd of 20 or more chasing us. We eventually ran out of food, and had about 10 to 15 more to feed. This being my first time on a mission trip or even feeding the homeless I was truely shock at how far the people would run for food no matter the age ( Their was an old woman running at the front of the line beating a person on a bike).  When we gave out our last bag of food we returned back to where we were staying around 10:30 where we got ready for the next day.

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