August 3rd , 2005
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LEADER BLOG: In the morning we went to visit an orphanage. The children were all afflicted with cerebral palsy to one degree or another. Most of us spent one on one time With the children. We sat, prayed, talked and pushed them in their wheel chairs. Several of the little children loved to race around the court yard. Musical highlight, Nathan Hook on guitar and Fletcher singing solo.

In the afternoon we went to a neighborhood that was significantly effected by
Hurricane Emily. We gave out water to most of the residents. Many of the people graciously opened their homes to us. We invited the people to a service being held in their neighborhood that Evening. Over 200 people came. The children danced and sang along with the Singers. Emily Franks and Zianab gave their testimonies. After the service we distributed items such as tooth brushes, shampoo and combs.
Jill Testo

      Hola. I am the student messenger for today. Most of you know me as Fletcher Abbott the pastors son though some refer to me here as “the white Mexican”. The night went well for most seeing as how everyone slept well. We had a few sleep walkers as usual but nothing to abnormal. Everyone got up early like we have every morning to get to breakfast on time. The food was great as always. YWAM does a good job on taking care of us around here. We left for an orphanage shortly after. This orphanage was not like the one we went to yesterday. It was an orphanage for children with disabilities. Most were confined to a wheel chair and few could understand what you were saying to them in English or Spanish. They loved the attention all the same. Half of us went with the children while the other half stayed in a chapel on the property. We could only have a limited amount of people at one time with the kids so we tag teamed most of the day. While I was in the chapel Dan (One of the YWAM staff) got out his guitar and we had a little worship. I chatted with him for a little while afterwards and before I knew it I had to go out and see the kids myself. To be honest I wasn’t looking forward to this very much. I knew this would be a sad site for me which was true. Everyone went off to find a kid to talk to and move around the court yard. There was only one girl left. She was sitting in her wheel chair next to a YWAM staff member who was playing the guitar and singing. She did a very good job especially considering the girl I was sitting with seemed to enjoy it very much. I was a little embarrassed though because I felt like I was doing much. I couldn’t seem to find the opportunity that God was trying to give me. Then it finally came. The girl that was playing the guitar and singing had been going at it for awhile and got really tired. After awhile she turned to me half joking and half desperate asking if I knew anyone in my group that could play the guitar. I finally saw my opportunity top help out. I went and got Nathan Hook. I explained to him the situation and he had his song book in his bag and he keeping walking back to the court yard with me. For the rest of the time me and Nathan worked together to make the kids happy. Nathan played while I sang. I can’t begin to explain to you in my own words how good this felt. A play called “I Remember Mama” puts it best when a character named Uncle Chris talks about making the ill feel better. “It is to have a bit of God in you”. I think everyone had a bit of God in them today. We left the orphanage heading for a park to eat lunch before we continued our busy day of ministry. We stayed in the park for a little while as some of the kids jumped across a stream back and forth. We headed out to another poor area in Monterrey. This time we went with gallons of water to give out. This was a new ministry for the YWAM staff to do and they were all excited about it. We were able to give out a lot of water. What impressed me the most was how humble and grateful the people were to receive the gift. Many people I met there were already Christian and while where they lived was harsh they still had such amazing faith that God was there ultimate provider. I know once I get home it will be easy to take things for granted again. I pray with all my heart that it doesn’t happen to me this time after seeing the things I have seen here throughout today and even this whole week. This has also been the same prayer for many of the students on the team. After giving at the water we did another service out on a rocky and dusty road. The program started out fine. No glitches really appeared. The weather was getting worse though and there was a storm very close by. You could see the lightning and here the thunder.

     We all continually prayed when we weren’t doing anything during the program. Before we started we were playing some sort of Spanish rap on the speakers. At this point one of the translators and new friends I worked with named Tina came to me and taught me how to dance to the music. She apparently felt I needed to learn how to loosen up. She even taught Jill Testo a few moves. Eventually we got to a skit called “in-between” This has become one of my personal favorite skits to do. This time around though things got a little tricky. The Testo boys are suppose to catch me in midair and then run me around the place. This always worked fine in the past but this time we were running around on a whole lot of rocks. Jacob Testo tripped on a rock making him and me crash down onto ground. Luckily no one was hurt and we jumped right back into the skit as if nothing wrong had happened. Joy Johnson and Ismatu gave there testimonies both of which did fantastic. Emily Franks gave the gospel which was very enjoyable. After the service was over we had loads of candy and toys to give to the children. There were times where it became quite a mob scene. There would be points where a lot of the students would be surrounded by around 30 kids. We returned to the base a little before 8 and soon after that dinner was ready. Many people went there separate ways after that. Some of us went outside. Others went to there bed to read. So far this has been life changing for everyone here. Everyone has done a lot of growing up including me. I would ask that you all keep praying for us. God has been gracious despite some of the things Satin has thrown at the team as a whole or even occasionally a specific student. Many of us have laughed during the good times and even cried during the very emotional times. Yes even some of the guys cried. Ok so maybe I was the only guy that has cried thus far but everyone has been very touched by this trip. Many of us have faced our fears over here and have conquered them thanks to God and this amazing staff he has given us. If there is one thing that I have learned here so far it’s that Gods spirit truly is at work in this world. He is doing amazing things and is showing his power through others. Many of us look forward to going home to see what works he has been doing in our own backyard when we haven’t even realized it. “If one day can change the world in a negative way why can’t one week change the world in a positive way” – Nathan Hook
Thanks for listening. Fletcher!