Dear Friends,

It is hard to believe that another day is coming to a close. Today we traveled to Buena Vista. Buena Vista when translated to English means good view. To say that Buena Vista had a nice view would be a severe understatement. To give you some background, we had to leave the mission house at seven in the morning, and it was a two hour drive. In order to get there we needed to go around a few active volcanoes and descend from about a mile and a half above sea level to just above sea level. This town, like every other town that we have visited was very different from the rest.

When we got there, we started by walking around the town. While walking around the town were had a chance to listen to many different stories from Kevin and also learn all about Guatemala’s education system. After we walked around the town we then started our faith lessons. I think that the whole team is amazed by how attentive the little kids are when they are handed a simple pamphlet with word games and pictures to color. After faith lessons we then had a chance to go on some home visits. Home visits are always one of my favorite times because not only are we able to communicate first hand with them, and gain a better understanding of how they live, but they also inspire me and my team by how much faith that they have.  

Today our teams devotion was on 2 Corinthians 4:5-12. Check it out if you get a chance. Today was a day where we saw a lot of poverty and even more malnourished. Not only that, it was a day where we could see first hand an example of the consequence of past decisions. For example, Buena Vista just got electricity brought out to their town a year ago because everyone thought that it would change their life. But in reality, for some it has really made their life worse than it was.

This is because people started buy internet and satellite TV, which is not bad if you can afford it. But some people have to stop sending their kids to school and are nearly starving themselves and causing themselves to get sick, all because they are trying to pay for 1 or 2 satellite TV stations.  Among other stories and experiences that I could share with you, I think that I end this email here. Thank you for all of your prayers. It is very evident that God is actively working on this mission trip.


Jon Knickelbein

A note from St. Luke Elder Austin Thomason:

Hello friends! I know this is your first time hearing from me so far, but I felt this needed to be heard. Five full days together, day and night, is quite a test for any group of people. Add in difficulties with a language barrier, late nights, early mornings, and the inability to have space away from each other, and it’s a recipe for disaster. I’m happy to report, however, that this has not been a problem, not in the least. All of us, from our 15 year old high schooler to our 40 year old mom, are getting along, caring for each other, encouraging one another, and choosing to look past the faults and cracks (see the devotion reference that Jon mentioned) that we each have in our personalities. Psalm 133 says “How good and pleasant it is when brothers live together in unity!” I was reminded of that today as we sat together long after our evening devotion, chatting and enjoying each others’ company. Praise God that He is keeping His promises, and thank you for your prayers. We’ll all see you in a few days!