Sunday, April 15, 2018

April visit plans

Here are the plans for this visit's travelers: Carrie Bridgman, Soni Castleberry, Sharon Kutz-Mellem and Elisa Owen

The purpose of this visit is to send CHPC women to be with the Presbyterian Women of our partnership presbytery -- Presbiterial Q'eqchi' Esotreno Izabal.-- during their annual assembly. Women in Guatemala still have a difficult time serving in leadership positions even within the women's groups. Our presence helps to support their efforts, as we also model how women are in ministry in our church and in presbyteries in the U.S. We will be bringing them greetings from the CHPC Presbyterian Women, and hopefully, confirming with them receipt of  the $1,350 that CHPC has directed toward the work of their presbytery.

Monday, April 16 - Travelers will need to be at the Louisville International Airport (SDF) by 4:45 a.m. so we will have time to gather, check in as a group at Delta, and have a prayer before we head through security. We depart on Flight  931 at 7:00 a.m., arriving in Atlanta at 8:29 a.m. We will fly out at 10:30 a.m. on Flight 904 for a 12:05 p.m. arrival in Guatemala City. Our driver, Enrique Carrillo, will meet us just outside the airport. He is the same driver that Soni Castleberry and Megan McCarty used last year at the recommendation of Mission Co-workers Sandi and Brian Thompson-Royer. He's a delight and speaks English quite well. Upon arrival at all travel points, Soni will contact Mary Love and she will provide travelers' families with texts regarding safe arrivals.

Enrique will take the travel group to Hotel Carmen, 9 03001, 3a Avenida Norte Their phone # is 502-7832 3850. The women will have a quad room. Enrique lives not far away so he will go home for dinner and the night with his family. CHPC travelers have stayed here before. It is owned by the brother of Carlos Lara who was our visiting pastor the summer that our partnership began over 10 years ago.  We will have time that afternoon to explore some of Antiqua. We will also call the Guatemalan Presbyterian Office (IENPG)  in Guatemala City to check on the status of the CHPC funds that were sent to them for transfer to our partners. At 7 p.m., Carlos' son, Carlito, his new wife Irma, their son Sebastian, and Carlito's sister Ana, will have dinner with us. 

Tuesday, April 17 - Breakfast is included at the hotel. After eating, if we have time, we'll look around the city a little more before checking out of the hotel at least by mid-morning  to get to Rio Dulce before dark. There, we will be staying at Bruno's hotel htttp:// The women will have a quad room together (two doubles and a bunk bed. Enrique will be staying at the hotel too. We will have dinner that night at the hotel. 

Wednesday, April 18 - We will check out of Bruno's in time to meet the women from the town of El Estor, which is the center point for the work of our partnership presbytery.  Ana Coc Tiul, president of the Presbyterian Women, says they have rented a bus for 40 of them and plan to meet us in Rio Dulce at 11 a.m. to caravan together to La Guitarra. This is the remote village where the assembly will be held at Hijo del Dios Viviente Iglesia. Some women may travel with us so we can visit and they can show Enrique the way where things aren't well-marked. We want to be in La Guitarra by 3 p.m. because we will have dinner and worship that evening. 

We will be staying this night and the next sleeping on the church floors with all the other women. This is where Gerardo Pop Ich pastors now. He was instrumental in helping form our partnership when he was the pastor at Arca de Noe Iglesia in El Estor and was president of the presbytery. 

Thursday, April 19 - This is the main day of the assembly. We will be at the church all day and staying overnight. This is a wonderful experience observing and supporting the women of the presbytery as they conduct business, wait on the Holy Spirit, pray, sing, visit with each other, cook meals, and lead worship in true celebration. It is an amazing and exhausting day lasting well into the evening.

Friday, April 20 - We will leave this morning in time to get back to Guatemala City at a reasonable time. We will be staying at Hostal de Don Pedro,, where we stayed on CHPC's 2016 partnership visit. It is located at 4ta. Avenida 3-25 Zona 1, 01001. The phone # is 502-2285-3434. The women will have two double rooms. This hotel is near the center city so we will have some time for sightseeing in the capitol. We plan to have dinner with Rubenia Sanchez, who was our interpreter last year, and Moses, her husband to be. Rubenia is the Guatemalan staff with Living Waters, a program based in Elizabethtown KY, that we may work with as our partners have expressed greater concern about the safety of their water supply.

Saturday, April 21 - We will need to be up early for our included breakfast at the hotel. Enrique will then have us to the airport no later than 11 a.m.. We leave on Flight 906 at 1:20 pm for a 6:50 p.m. arrival in Atlanta. We'll have a long layover in Atlanta, but will be on Flight 2491 at 10:35 arrive safely in Louisville at 11:59 p.m.

Those of us traveling are very excited about our opportunity to represent CHPC with our partners on this visit. It is wonderful to have two Spanish speakers on this visit thus no need for a Spanish translator this year. We will rely on our sisters in Presbyterian Women to translate back and forth for us in Q'eqchi, the native Mayan language that most of the women speak. If any of you reading this have any questions about the visit, please feel free to email me, or text or call me at 502-417-6481. 

Thanks so much for your help in support of this visit. Please keep us and our Guatemalan sisters in your prayers. We look forward to sharing our experiences with you.


April 2018 visit prayer partners

Elisa Owen

Janine Linder

Mary Love

Jerry Van Marter

Jane Thomas

Shannon Langley

Amy Linfield

Dave Bush

Patricia Lambert

Carol Mead and Don Mead

Sharon Kutz-Mellem

Mark and Barbara Barnes

Jim Hubert

Mary Love

Stephen Bartlett

Tricia Lloyd-Sidle

Patti Marcum

Carol Mead and Don Mead

Carrie Bridgman

Mary Love

Rebecca Barnes

Deborah Fortel

Marianne Booth

Doug Yeager

Marsha Berry

Carol Mead and Don Mead

Soni Castleberry

Mary Love

Molly Casteel

Eva Stimson

Kim Aycock

Claudia Foulkes

Hilda Zuniga

Carol Mead and Don Mead


Barbara Hedspeth

Beverly Machin

Children’s Sunday school class

April 2018 visit team commissioning

Leader [Mary Love]to Guatemala Visit Team:

Leader: God has called you to a particular mission—to visit our Kekchi sisters and brothers to deepen our partnership relationship with the women of Estoreño Presbytery. Do you welcome the responsibility of this service as a part of your commitment to follow Jesus, to love neighbors, and to work for the reconciling of the world?

Guatemala Visit Team: I do.
Leader to the congregation:

Leader: And do you, members and friends of Crescent Hill Presbyterian Church, promise to prayerfully support and encourage all of these friends in this ministry?

Congregation: We do.
Leader: Let us pray:

People: We ask your blessing, O God, on these friends who stand before us this day. Bless their journey and their visit. May they be strengthened in their faith and upheld in your love. May this visit further our partnership—not just with Guatemalan sisters and brothers, but also with the Christ whom we follow.
Leader to Guatemala Visit Team: You are commissioned to service on our behalf and in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Go with our prayers and be mutually encouraged through your visit with our Kekchi sisters and brothers.