We were asked to provide transportation and help in passing out cloth diapers and bibles to several small villages in Southern Belize this past week. An organization called Bibles for Belize have a goal of placing a bible into every home in Belize that wants one. No religion, no preaching, no strings. Adam and Ashley had seen a need for washable diapers for the babies in Belize. So they raised the money to purchase 500 sets of diapers and brought them down to Belize on their trip down.
First we visited Trio, a small Mayan village where a pastor had asked for a delivery of Bibles for his church members. We met his wife who readily invited us into her home, along with hugs and smiles. Her daughter was there and grand daughter, who was lying in the hammock under the open porch, with thatched roof.
You could see through the slat boards that were nailed to 2×4’s. The home was spotless. Even the outhouse, some 50 feet from the house, was very clean. You could tell there was much pride in the things that they had, though very little.
We were thanked many times for the delivery and told of a clinic that was being held further into the village, where we would find mothers and their babies. Adam and Ashley were excited to get over there to give away the diapers.
As we pulled up to the building where the young mothers were located, we got a lot of inquisitive looks. The vehicles do stand out a bit with their roof racks and expedition equipment. Once the back door was opened, and Ashley held the diapers up, she was immediately swarmed by the mothers all interested in the gifts.
Ashley explained how to use the diapers and the benefit of using them over the disposals. They all listened intently and smiles erupted every where as they received a set of diapers based on the gender. Then Daniel offered a bible to anyone who wanted it. It was widely received and appreciated. We were carrying 3 languages, English, Spanish, and Kekchi (Mayan). Angela helped pass out the Bibles and talk with mothers.
We waved good bye and drove onto the next villages, San Antonio and Santa Elana. These are in Southern Belize, very near the Guatemala border. Once we stopped near the village, we were again surrounded by locals excitedly receiving their own copy of the Bible. Word traveled fast. I don’t know how they communicated, as my cell phone did not have any service, but within minutes half the village was there!
We walked around offering Bibles to all who wanted them. One man was so appreciative of the gesture, that he went home to his wooden thatch roofed hut and got some dried corn on the cob. He brought back a plate full and offered it to each of us. I was skeptical of eating the corn, but did anyway so as not to offend him. He was such a generous man, and wanted to share with us. It turned out to be quite good!
The children were running and playing, smiling, and waving. We felt so welcomed. Everywhere we turned, someone wanted to talk to us. It was a very humbling experience. Seeing the conditions these people live in everyday. The slat walled homes, had compacted dirt floors from years of being walked on by the families. Pigs ran loose in and out of the mud and into and through the houses. There was a central hand water pump that supplied all of the village. I did not see any electricity in many of the homes. Though it was over 90 degrees and sunny, there were no fans or A/C. However, the people were truley happy, and proud of their homes. The children laughed and played, in spite of not having electronics.
We traveled a little further down the road before we came upon the construction of the road that will eventually cross over into Guatemala, called the Southern border. It is coming along very well. We were told we were about three miles from the border when we turned around. They are making great progress. I cant wait to use the border crossing soon!
It is always amazing to me to see how much more family orientated, and happy people are that do not seem to have much. Priorities are definitely different here.
I cannot describe the blessing I felt to be able to have a part in bringing these gifts to these people.