Nov 15

Families in Poverty with Immeasurable Hope

By Bill Blacquiere

Originally posted at

“Today’s blog is contributed by Brian DeVos, Vice President of Children and Family Services at Bethany. Brian is the father of 2 daughters and a husband to Kristy. He has been blessed by the gift of adoption and a loving family in many ways, and is a passionate advocate for children growing up in loving families.

I recently traveled to Guatemala. Though it is a beautiful country in a Caribbean-like environment, it is also filled with extreme cases of poverty.

Guatemala’s civil war that ended in the late 1990s had a devastating effect. Many mothers became widows and many more children were orphaned. Poor water supplies and nutrition placed families in desperate need, and violence and death became a reality. Many victims were children, and girls and women became targets for trafficking due to a lack of education and employment. Living on an average of $2 to $3 dollars a day, many children and families are still at extreme risk—the threat for abuse, illness, trafficking, and violence are everyday occurrences.

Family preservation services are few, and in the poorest areas the family unit is completely broken. Protection systems are just beginning to re-develop, but very slowly. International adoptions remain at a stand-still because of various problems plaguing the adoptions system and process. Guatemala also needs a quality foster care program as hundreds of children wait for families in orphanages.

Bethany partners there with Pray American’s Manos de Jesus program because we believe every child deserves a safe and loving family. God has called us to assist in strengthening and supporting the least of these—the widow and the orphan—and we provide support to parents so they will not feel forced to relinquish their children to orphanages or pay “coyotes” to take them to North America.

On my recent trip, we visited a single mother and her three children—two with cerebral palsy— who had been abandoned by the father. Through our One Family sponsorship program and partnership with Manos de Jesus, we provided walkers to prevent the two boys from being cut on their hands as they crawled on the ground. We also met with a grandmother who is caring for three granddaughters. Their parents died and no other family member would step in to help. She will now be able to support them through a micro business we recently launched in partnership with Manos de Jesus. Her granddaughters are also learning how to run a business and support themselves. Without this program, they would likely be on the streets, involved with drugs and prostitution.
One Family brings the hope and love of Jesus Christ to these families with tangible assistance, confirming He is alive and present in their lives. They meet a caring Christ who provides the physical, spiritual, and emotional needs of both the giver and the receiver. They know and believe they are loved, and they receive immeasurable hope.

I experienced transforming love in seeing these families thrive, many whom show great faith. My self-centered life was transformed as I realized Bethany’s mission to demonstrate the love and compassion of Jesus to these families is my mission too. Isn’t that why we’re all here?”

For full article click here:

Nov 15

Orphans helpless, but not hopeless


Mission News Networkwcsg-guatemala

Guatemala (MNN) — There are over 163 million orphans in this world. UNICEF estimates that more than 370,000 of those orphans live in Guatemala. These orphans plunge beneath the poverty line, living in orphanages, slums, and on the streets. They are helpless, but not hopeless.

Orphan Outreach has always worked to help children in need. They help to create long-lasting effects in lives by sharing the word of God, feeding the hungry, building homes, and spending time with kids.

They also work to provide medical care, and this year they are in dire need of more medical professionals.

In past years, three days had been dedicated to medical clinics in the Lake Atitlan region for the community of Santiago. Volunteers were able to help more than 900 people. But this year, a fourth day has been added, and Orphan Outreach is eager to see how many they will be able to serve.

They say, “Physicians, Physicians Assistants, Nurses, and all medical professionals are needed to make this trip a success!”

As Orphan Outreach is in need of medical professionals, they also extend an invitation to non-medical professionals with a passion for children. They will help to minister to children and provide support.

The Guatemala 2015 trip will take place from March 14 to March 23, a ten-day trip that will change lives. The cost is $2250 per person, but Orphan Outreach says that cost should not frighten volunteers off because most people are able to raise their support for the trip.

You can make a difference. Just take a leap of faith.

Pray that God will send enough volunteers to Orphan Outreach, and that the March 2015 Guatemala trip will be a success.

For information on how to volunteer, click here.

Original article posted here:

Sep 30

Salud y Paz, Upcoming Surgical Mission Team

salud y pazOn SUNDAY October 5th (and the following week) Salud y Paz will be hosting a surgical mission team with a plastic surgeon and a general surgeon. We are looking for patients who meet the following criteria:


**Patients must be at least 15 years old**

  • Hernias
  • Non-complicated masses (lipoma, cyst, superficial mass/tumor)
  • Ganglion cysts
  • Breast biopsy/lumpectomy
  • Mastectomies
  • Biopsy


If you know someone who may qualify for a pre-surgical consult please send the following patient information to Katie Slagle, R.N. at  At this address you may also send questions about additional cases (with photos if helpful).


  • patient name
  • community
  • age/gender
  • patient phone number
  • suspected diagnosis or surgical need
  • DPI


Below is important information that every patient should be aware of before arriving at the clinic:


  • Surgeries take place at Salud y Paz clinic in Camanchaj (5 min. north of Los Encuentros – Km 131.5)
  • We ask for a Q50 donation from each surgical patient.
  • Patients should arrive at the clinic by 8 AM in order to insure they receive a pre-surgical consult.
  • Patients MUST bring a photocopy of their DPI.
  • Patients need to be signed-up on our surgical patient list to receive a consult.  Unfortunately, if they are not on the patient list we cannot guarantee a consult.
  • There is a free place for the patient and one family member to stay should it be necessary.
  • There is financial help for those patients in need.


Lastly, if you would like to be added to our Surgery Alert Distribution Contact List, please send name, organization name, and e-mail address to Katie Slagle at We look forward to collaborating and working with you to serve the people of Guatemala.


***Project Salud y Paz is a US based non-profit organization serving the SW highlands of Guatemala in the departments of Quiche, Quetzaltenango, and Suchitepequéz. In conjunction with the National Evangelical Primitive Methodist Church of Guatemala and the United Methodist Church of the US, we offer health, healing, and education to rural Guatemala through long-standing clinics, a staff of 30+ Guatemalans, individual long-term volunteers, and some 30 volunteer teams/year which provide surgical, medical, and dental care including construction projects. The main clinic is located in a community called Camanchaj where we also operate a preschool and primary school.


Katie Slagle, R.N., B.S.N.

Surgery and Community Health Coordinator

Proyecto Salud y Paz (Project Health & Peace), Guatemala

Cell: 4640-2861, Work: 4771-4175, 4849-0884

Sep 30

Fatherheart Weekend Coming To Guatemala!

Fatherheart Weekend Coming To Guatemala!

Welcome, Missionaries, Pastors, Teachers, and anyone wanting a fresh touch from God . . .

Come and discover the supernatural freedom that is available to sons and daughters and experience the Father’s love.

Unearth your true identity and experience the power of love that removes hindrances to intimacy with God and others.


Fatherheart Weekend led by:

Buck & Anna Eaton, Pastors, Catch The Fire Houston –

Dennis & Phyllis Scheminske, Missionaries in Guatemala for 5 years,

Catch The Fire Houston Ministry Team

You won’t want to miss this time of refreshing and impartation!



Thursday, Nov. 13  (9a – 6p)

Friday, Nov. 14   (9a – 6p)

Saturday, Nov. 15   (8a – 11a)



Hotel El Mirador

2 Calle 3 – 51 Zona 1

Santa Lucia Milpas Altas

Sacatepequez, Guatemala

502-7756 -0483

(limited parking)

(Hotel is easy to find –A detailed map will be sent upon registration)


$25/Q190 person for entire seminar or $10/day (includes coffee breaks)



Limited number of hotel rooms are available for approximately:

ROOMS: Q250/double, Q375/triple, Q475/quadruple (Q125/per person per night-includes IVA)

Please contact Hotel El Mirador directly to make reservations at




Available at the hotel for Q80.

Please notify the front desk if you plan to have lunch at the hotel.

Lunch needs to be pre-ordered/paid for on first day of the seminar so hotel can purchase and prepare the correct amount of food for Thursday & Friday.

The hotel offers gluten-free and vegetarian meals.

Other options for lunch nearby include McDonalds, San Martin, Cafetalito and Pollo Campero.




For questions, please contact:

Phyllis Scheminske at

303-952-0140 – SKYPE – USA Telephone

720-459-0747 – Phyllis – USA Cell Phone

Sep 18

Independence Day: Guatemala

Jamie Waller, President of the CadaNino Foundation which hires Christina nannies to care for children in ABI, the government home for the severely physically and neurologically disabled, participated in the “running of the torch” a Guatemalan Independence Day tradition. He, along with residents and staff from ABI, made the run from the center by the Guatemalan Airport to Obelisco in Zona 14. It was a fun filled experience which both he and the children truly enjoyed.

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