Nicaragua - June, 2017

This is us!

Barry Johnson, Mike Voight, Maddie, Tim Parker, Alex, Tom Lutz, Kay Johnson, Ingrid, Dee Ritchey and Damaris

Going to Villa Esperanza in Managua, Nicaragua.

We are Gulf Gate Church Tribe

We drove to Miami.

On our way to our destination. We got in Managua at the end of the day. Kay Moore and Jessica went to pick us up on a school bus.

We showered, had our debrief with the team and Kay, dinner and bed.

This is the Villa Esperanza.

Such a beautiful place. It truly is an honor and a blessing being able to work for a beautiful cause and with special people.

That's the heart of Villa, where most gatherings take place. 

Our first morning in Nicaragua

Kay Moore was our facilitator from Forward Edge

On our first morning we went to Iglesia de La Roca in Motastepe.

That's actually where we did most of our work during this trip.

Maria and Tom. Little did I know that I would develop a strong connection with this lady, Maria, and her daughters, Yara and Yareli.

Eliezer's and Garnet's children, Cesia and Samuel.

Maria and I hugging each other for the first time.

Our first job on this trip was at the Villa Esperanza. Family Day Carnival

We set up a Portrait Photography Space for the girls and their families.

Oh it was so fun and so great to meet with them!

This is the full-time pastor of Villa Esperanza - Ricardo Hernandez with Tom. 

These kids totally went crazy for our cameras. They had a blast playing with them.

Here are few pics they took with my camera.

Tim, my photographer buddy.

I love this picture. This was our first day at the Villa, therefore I didn't know anyone yet. I was taking random pictures throughout the event and this was one of them. It turns out this beautiful girl on the right ended up being the girl I sponsor - Miriam Massiel. I was so happy to find this picture of her among hundreds that I took.

Wilbert and Natanael

Playing with the props and the kids

We kept having fun!

We kept posing for the two boys that took over our cameras :-)

These are the two boys that loved our cameras!

Some soccer happened that day.


Wilbert, Gloria and Judith. 

Gloria and Wilbert are the founders of the Villa.

(Natanael and Judith are pastor Ricardo's and Leyda's son and daughter)

Getting ready for our day of service in Motastepe

Driving through Managua on our way to Motastepe

That's where we spent most of our time in Nicaragua. We hosted Vacation Bible School for the children. We also painted the church.

First day of Vacation Bible School. The children were lining up just outside of the church waiting for us to welcome them!

These children stole my heart!

This amazing lady was our translator - Karla Matus.

Our group of children on our first morning. We were held a vacation bible school in the afternoons.

The famous Alvaro :-)

My girl - Yara

My other girl - Raysa

Games outside organized by Alex

Painting the walls of the church

The children really loved the guitar and the songs.

Our group shot in the afternoon



Even the moms enjoyed our crafts

Yara and Yareli

Garnet - the wife of pastor Eliezer

Ingrid, Tim and I were responsible for the vacation bible school activities. I did the Noah's Ark. The kids loved to decorate and put the ark together.

Antonio and Yara

My two girls

Patricia and Oscar

Soccer in the streets of Motastepe.

Susie Miller and Natanael

Barry and Alvaro

This is Jessica, our coordinator along with Kay

Such a sweet family

Yareli, Maria, Antonio, and Yara

Our last day of vacation bible school

Mamma Alejandra

Our daily transportation

Pastor Eliezer with wife Garnet and children, Cesia and Samuel

A special visit

Alejandra's family

On our last day we worked on the construction of Eliezer's house.

Last gathering with our group in Iglesia Roca Eterna

On Wednesday our team had a day off. We went for a boat ride on lake Nicaragua and we visited Granada.


Such a charming town

We also visited Masaya Volcano National Park. That.was.amazing!!! Active volcano.

Group shot - our team

Our only meal out. It was delicious!!!



Jessica and Tim

These pictures were taken by our talented Tim Parker

Our last day at the Villa and Nicaragua

Wow! I can't put in words the value of this experience.

How did this trip transformed me?

God used every single person around me to weave the brokenness and pain in my life into a beautiful journey of surrendering and faithfulness.

 He sent me there not because they needed my help but because I so desperate needed His help.

The journey that started there is yet to be finished and lived, to the end of my days.

It was humbling to serve in Nicaragua. 

Can't wait to go back and see you all again!

If you would like to learn more about what God and His people are doing there please click here

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