We have great news - We bought a car Saturday morning! THANK YOU! so much to each of you who gave and prayed for this car for us! We brought it to our mechanic and he gave us the stamp of approval. We are beyond thankful to have a reliable vehicle!
About 48 hours after the purchase of our car the president of Guatemala shut down our country.
All borders are shut no incoming or outgoing.
All malls, public and private businesses are closed, all schools closed.
Only pharmacies, banks, grocery stores and gas stations are open for limited hours.
Gatherings of any kind are prohibited.
All public transportation in the country is shut down (if you have been to a third world country you know this is HUGE)
No entry into the prisons.
Everyone should stay indoors and only go out for necessities.
The country shuts down completely at 9pm. NOTHING open.
*we are also out of toilet paper - haha!
We are actually pretty grateful for the extreme action taken. We live in a country where so many are uneducated that the spread of this virus could be catastrophic if not dealt with in this way. However, in a country where so many live day to day and if they do not work they do not get paid, we are uncertain what the future holds for many here. The president is holding another press conference Wednesday to roll out his economic plan to help people get through this. So, while you are experiencing cabin fever and anxiety over the news - we are right there with you. We are praying for you!
We are however, continuing at the school via internet. Jerry will be giving his classes via Google classroom and I have begun a Chaplain Chat email to stay connected with my students to share hope and peace. Jerry will not be entering the prison for an extended time as they have closed all entrances into the prison due to the virus and also a mutiny attempt last week.
Please continue praying for Samuel and the other believers in the prison who meet for the Bible School as all of that has been suspended as well.
We will be checking on the shelter later this week to see how things are going there. When we were there Thursday and Sunday things were normal. Not much coming and going from there. We will wait to hear how their supplies are holding out. I am sure anxiety is high among the girls with all of them being away from family and some from their children and siblings. Pray for us as we try to decide wisely how to help them.
Before the world went into crisis mode we had a very successful first round of service projects for the Spring semester. All secondary students went out to 8 different ministries around Xela and served in many different capacities. Jerry lead the group that served at the Shelter and I lead a group that went out to a rural school. I absolutely love being the coordinator for these projects. It is a joy to disciple our students to serve and share hope with others. At the end of this blog are a few pictures to brighten your day.
We love you all and continue praying for God’s grace and peace to cover each one of you!
Gerald and Sarah Lastrapes
Along with their two children are missionaries in Guatemala. They will be sharing stories of discipleship through prison and shelter ministries.