First Pres Travels to Getsemani Church in Guatemala
Please keep in your prayers the five First Pres members who are traveling to Guatemala November 12-20. They are Pastor Greg Stovell, Elizabeth Guman, Peter Guman, Kristy Douglas, and Hannah Atchinson. During this week, they will be joining our sister church Getsemani for times of fellowship, work in ministry together, and opportunities to learn & grow together. Here is just a sampling of their itinerary:
Saturday, November 12: First Pres travelers arrive in Guatemala – pray for safe travels and a blessed trip!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Arrived to a warm greeting from Getsmani Church. Grateful to fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Guatemala! Hannah Atchinson and Kristy Mae Douglas arrive tomorrow.
Sunday, November 13: Worship together at Getsemani Church, and a church dinner afterwards – pray for times of great fellowship and passionate worship, and for Pastors Greg Stovell and Alfredo Barrios as they lead!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Started the day worshiping at Getsemani Church with Greg Stovell preaching. Pepian for lunch. Meeting with the Deacons and dinner with the Elders. Looking forward to Monday. . .meeting in the morning with the Presbytery and in the afternoon VBS starts!
Monday, November 14: Learning about Guatamala’s history with a visit to their National Palace and Human Rights Commission. Getsemani’s VBS starts today – pray for the kids, teachers & volunteers of Getsemani Church (our First Pres team will be volunteering)!
Kristy Douglas writes: An amazing first day spent with our brothers and sisters from Getsemani! Started the day with a visit to the Presbytery offices where we got a Guatemalan history lesson, followed by a tour of the national university and a super yummy lunch in downtown Guatemala City, then Vacation Bible School (my favorite part!) and dinner in a church member's home in Villa Nueva. Can't wait to see what's in store for tomorrow!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Started the day with a talk on Guatemalan history and human rights. We spent the afternoon at VBS at Getsemani Church. Dinner at the Perez's home. Looking forward to tomorrow - Antigua, VBS and dinner with the deacons.
Tuesday, November 15: Visit to Antigua (old capital city of Guatemala) and VBS in the afternoon. Dinner with Getsemani’s Deacons in the evening – pray for Getsemani’s Deacons and their Medical Clinic ministry (our team will be presenting donations of money & medicine on behalf of First Pres for their 2017 clinics)!
Kristy Douglas writes: Another great day in Guatemala! We started the day with a trip to Antigua (absolutely beautiful!) including a trip to the Antigua market & lunch...then VBS and the market in Villa Nuevo (tried 3 new fruits!) and dinner with our Getsemani Deacon friends!
Wednesday, November 16: Learning about the history of the Presbyterian Church in Guatemala with Getsemani’s elder Jonan Rodas, then VBS in the afternoon. Dinner with Getsemani’s Women’s Fellowship Group – pray for the women of Getsemani Church!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Started today with a wonderful talk from Jonan on the history of the Presbyterian church in Guatemala. Peter is a big hit at VBS with the kids asking for him to take their photos. Amazing sunset followed by a dinner celebration with the women of Getsemani - truly inspiring sisters! Looking forward to tomorrow . . .traveling to Xela to see a part of the country I've not visited before!
Kristy Douglas writes: Day 3 in Guatemala was full of laughter, fellowship and - most of all - love. My cup runneth over. ❤️
Thursday, November 17: Traveling to Xela (aka Quetzaltenango), a Mayan city ~4 hours away, with members of Getsemani Church, for some time of fun and education about Guatemala and their Mayan culture – pray for Guatemala and its people!
Friday, November 18: Returning from Xela – pray for Getsemani’s leadership: elders, partnership committee, and Pastor Alfredo!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Took an amazing trip to the hot springs in Quatzeltenango. Stopped for fresh coconut milk along the way. Swam in the hot sulphur pools and enjoyed amazing views. Spent time with friends and explored history with Jonan Rodas. Tomorrow is our last day. . .looking forward to time with the men's fellowship, meeting with the partnership committee and a worship celebration.
Kristy Douglas writes: Days 4 & 5 were quite an adventure! On Thursday we took the long drive up to Fuentes Georginas (Georgina Fountains) - with a stop along the way for a coconut snack. We stayed there overnight in little huts and then toured Quezaltenango (also known as Xela) on Friday. Our drive back took some time because of traffic, but we made the best of it with games and laughter! Our driver this week (Wilfred) has been a HUGE blessing to us - and even joined in for a game or two!
Saturday, November 19: Lunch with Getsemani’s Men’s Fellowship Group, and meeting with their partnership committee in afternoon – pray for the men of Getsemani Church!
Elizabeth Guman writes: Our last full day in Guatemala! We had lunch with the Men's Fellowship and then met with the Partnership Committee. We presented Hannah's art work as a gift from our church. We finished the evening with a worship service and dinner celebration of Josue's graduation!! What a privilege to represent First Pres on this trip. Thank you to all who have been praying for us - please continue for our team's safe travels home tomorrow.
Kristy Douglas writes: Our last day in Guatemala was bitter sweet...while I think we are all excited to return home to our families and our own beds, we will miss our friends from Getsemani Inglesia. I cannot begin to describe the love, hospitality and warmth of these people...I know I will greatly miss the dozens of hugs and words of sincere welcome we received each and every day of our visit. ❤️ Adios, Guatemala!
Sunday, November 20: First Pres travelers return to US – pray for safe travels, and ask them about their experiences when you see them!