Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Eighteen; George Wuertz

Mr. George Wuertz and his family are Christian missionaries in Cuenca, Ecuador, and they are partially supported by Colonial Presbyterian Church. George has a beautiful “growing” family that lives and works with George in Cuenca.  He also has family living here in Kansas City, not to mention that Dale Bain is a close relative.  George was kind enough to assist Agua Viva with the installation at Gompuene this past week. As you may know, George (and his family) helped us in 2012 also with our first installation in Ecuador at Promesa Divina, Colta, Monjas, Chimborazo.
George is an amazing guy. Who else, whose full time job is “missionary” in Cuenca, Ecuador, would take time off from his job to do…. well… missionary work.. in Ecuador.

IMG_5000George is our “go to” guy. There is nothing that he can’t handle. You should see him with a shovel in his hand !!! George has one positive attitude.. plus he speaks Spanish! It doesn’t get much better than that.

George’s warmth and friendship was inspirational and encouraging to all of us. He road the Chicken bus all day to get to Riobamba on Sunday night to be with us, and we never heard a “peep” (cluck) out of him. Every day… on task… getting it done.

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Eighteen; George Wuertz

Mr. George Wuertz and his family are Christian missionaries in Cuenca, Ecuador, and they are partially supported by Colonial Presbyterian Church. George has a beautiful “growing” family that lives and works with George in Cuenca.  He also has family living here in Kansas City, not to mention that Dale Bain is a close relative.  George was kind enough to assist Agua Viva with the installation at Gompuene this past week. As you may know, George (and his family) helped us in 2012 also with our first installation in Ecuador at Promesa Divina, Colta, Monjas, Chimborazo.
George is an amazing guy. Who else, whose full time job is “missionary” in Cuenca, Ecuador, would take time off from his job to do…. well… missionary work.. in Ecuador.

IMG_5000George is our “go to” guy. There is nothing that he can’t handle. You should see him with a shovel in his hand !!! George has one positive attitude.. plus he speaks Spanish! It doesn’t get much better than that.

George’s warmth and friendship was inspirational and encouraging to all of us. He road the Chicken bus all day to get to Riobamba on Sunday night to be with us, and we never heard a “peep” (cluck) out of him. Every day… on task… getting it done.

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Seventeen

This is the last blog of our Ecuador 2103 series; the trip home. Let me begin by saying, “we did make it home”. We had a few difficulties along the way, but God was good.
You see, we had the “letter”.
Before we left for Ecuador, thanks to some good detective work by Dr. (now Brother) Gaugh, Agua Viva insisted that our host provide a letter approving our dental ministry in Ecuador prior to departure. Needless to say, we pretty much wore out that letter before we got home. At the airport, on the way home, most of our team was called one by one, and two by two, into security to “fully explain” why, on God’s green earth, we would be transporting, from Ecuador to the United States, large quantities of Novocain, hypodermic needles, dental equipment, sutures, and drugs. One by one, we dragged out the letter, in Spanish, in Security, and with the airplane fully boarded except for our Agua Viva Team, we were finally cleared to leave. Don’t forget, we awoke this morning at 2:30 am.  But, like I said, “we did make it home”.

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We arrived in Kansas City about 9:00 pm, for a quick prayer, and “let’s go home”.
Honestly, it was hard enough to say goodbye to our new friends in Ecuador. And now, we had to say goodbye to each other. It was such a wonderful trip. We had a wonderful group of volunteers. Every single person completed their perfect God-given assignment. And, now, we had to go back to “WORK”. This was definitely the hardest part. The transition back into American Society… well… it’s tough.IMG_5035.Compressed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Thank you everyone who joined us, everyone who supported us, and everyone who allowed us to humbly serve them in some way, and may God bless each and everyone of you in some very special way for your God-honored service.DSC01728.Compressed

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Sixteen

Our last day in Ecuador, with two days of travel ahead of us, we were able to take a getaway to go shopping in Riobamba. This was a lot of fun and it was extremely interesting. Whole pigs (not chestnuts) roasting on an open fire and hundreds of indigenous Quechue citizens their living selling their wares. Most of the textiles were hand made from Alpaca, Llama, and Sheep Wool.

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After market, on that beautiful sunny day, our Bus Driver, Byron, introduced us to his family in Guano and then… more shopping.
Eventually, we arrived in Quito after a long four hour bus drive. By mid-afternoon, we arrived at the Virgin Mary Monument which is one of the foremost landmarks in Quito.
It was great fun, even though we arrived late in our hotel and had to unload 20 suitcases and get up at 2:30 am the next morning !!! This trip is not for the “faint of heart”.

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Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Fifteen; Raquel Poz Diaz

Maybe I should take a few moments to tell you about Raquel Poz Diaz.

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Raquel is the granddaughter of Don Pablo. Don Pablo was a “Oak of Righteousness” in Cantel, Guatemala. Through constant prayer and raw perseverance, he laid the foundation for Colegio Mark in Cantel, Guatemala, serving the indigenous Quiche community with Christian alternative education. Raquel is the daughter of Jacinto Poz Pom who continues the work of his father and is presently the principal of the school.
Raquel is now in dental school and I believe she will graduate in the next couple of years. Colegio Mark has now begun construction of a new dental clinic, where possibly, Raquel will someday practice her new skills.
She has a dog named Rocky.

imageAgua Viva has been very blessed to have Raquel on our team. This was one of our very best decisions to include her on our Team. During our first trip to Ecuador 2012, Raquel was our lead Educator. Her first job in Ecuador was to educate two fine young women at Promesa Divina; Elena and Rosa. And, now carrying on Raquel’s work, Elena and Rosa provided the education at Gompuene, Ecuador in 2013. And, while Elena and Rosa were carrying “torch” at Gompuene, Raquel was providing dentistry DSC_0199.Compressedat Gompuene and Jipongato. I hope you can see the energy and impact that her persona has brought to the Team.
One of our very first amazing experiences with Raquel was at Eben Ezer, in Guatemala. Isaac, Wendy, and Raquel assisted us with the education components. My very fondest memory of our Agua Viva Education Program was Raquel and Wendy demonstrating the use of dental floss on the stage during our massive celebration. I don’t think we could ever reproduce such an amazing and impactful program for our children.
I heard many nice comments about Raquel’s work this last trip. Her sweet quiet manner was a true blessing for the children and a wonderful model for Agua Viva. You can’t put a price tag on something like this. Her presence is priceless. If I could ask for one blessing for all of our Volunteers, it would be for them to experience “Raquel” and become her friend and companion. It is the definition of “joy” and deep down inside it is this God-honored reward that Agua Viva hopes to bring to our new friends here in the United States and in our targeted communities.

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Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Fourteen, Maritza Yanez

Many of you may not know Maritza Yanez Navarrete.
A few years ago, while travelling on business, I gave up my seat to a young newlywed couple so they could sit together. There was only one seat left on the airplane… a middle seat. I sat down next to a nice lady that I guessed must be from Guatemala. In less than five minutes, this nice lady, Maritza Yanez, explained that she was actually from Ecuador, and by the way, “is there any way you could come to Ecuador to help our poor people? And, oh, by the way, I do water purification research at Kansas University.”IMG_4842
This was the beginning of a wonderful God-honored relationship with my friend, Maritza. Since that chance meeting, we have completed three installations in Ecuador and we have nurtured dozens of new important relationships with the Quichue people.
Maritza is a very unusual person. Maritza is an advocate for the poor. I liken her to Martin Luther King, Jr. She has a wonderful and realistic perspective on the disadvantaged people of the world. She is humble, and has no need for affluence. She has declined money and at the same time she keeps volunteering to assist us.
She works as a lab technician (Técnico de Laboratorio) for ESPOCH… Escuela Superior Politécnica de Chimborazo. Even though her time is precious, she has been a very reliable and trustworthy source of information and she remains our most trusted “boots on the ground” in Ecuador.IMG_1933

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Fourteen, Maritza Yanez

Many of you may not know Maritza Yanez Navarrete.
A few years ago, while travelling on business, I gave up my seat to a young newlywed couple so they could sit together. There was only one seat left on the airplane… a middle seat. I sat down next to a nice lady that I guessed must be from Guatemala. In less than five minutes, this nice lady, Maritza Yanez, explained that she was actually from Ecuador, and by the way, “is there any way you could come to Ecuador to help our poor people? And, oh, by the way, I do water purification research at Kansas University.”IMG_4842
This was the beginning of a wonderful God-honored relationship with my friend, Maritza. Since that chance meeting, we have completed three installations in Ecuador and we have nurtured dozens of new important relationships with the Quichue people.
Maritza is a very unusual person. Maritza is an advocate for the poor. I liken her to Martin Luther King, Jr. She has a wonderful and realistic perspective on the disadvantaged people of the world. She is humble, and has no need for affluence. She has declined money and at the same time she keeps volunteering to assist us.
She works as a lab technician (Técnico de Laboratorio) for ESPOCH… Escuela Superior Politécnica de Chimborazo. Even though her time is precious, she has been a very reliable and trustworthy source of information and she remains our most trusted “boots on the ground” in Ecuador.IMG_1933

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Thirteen; Teamwork

It takes a lot of team work to make a successful trip. Just think about all of the different skill sets required. We need to have expertise in water hardware, education, accounting, translating, dentistry, local contacts, and local directions only to name a few. And, when you think about it, if any one expertise is lost, Agua Viva cannot achieve our objective.IMG_0442
I am always amazed at how these skill sets come together. There is something about “depending” on others that draws us together as Brothers and Sisters in a special way. We don’t seem to get much of that at home. It seems to be partly due to the fact that we are all operating outside of our comfort zone and we are all trying to do our part in an “un-familiar environment”.
For example, I really depend on Mario Mejia. I just don’t know what I would do without him. I really depend on Curt Mader. I don’t know what I would do without him. I really depend on Dr. Gaugh. You don’t want ME pulling any teeth. And, this just goes on and on. There is something about doing God’s work that really brings a team together in a Christ-like way. It is hugely satisfying. It is also very efficient. No arguments required. Everyone pulls in the same direction… doing God’s work.DSC_0180
Honestly, I don’t know anyplace else where I have experienced this. Pure team work. Boy, if could figure out how to bring this same experience into my work place, there is no limit to what we could do.
Great team work everyone !!DSC_0138.Compressed

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Thirteen; Teamwork

It takes a lot of team work to make a successful trip. Just think about all of the different skill sets required. We need to have expertise in water hardware, education, accounting, translating, dentistry, local contacts, and local directions only to name a few. And, when you think about it, if any one expertise is lost, Agua Viva cannot achieve our objective.IMG_0442
I am always amazed at how these skill sets come together. There is something about “depending” on others that draws us together as Brothers and Sisters in a special way. We don’t seem to get much of that at home. It seems to be partly due to the fact that we are all operating outside of our comfort zone and we are all trying to do our part in an “un-familiar environment”.
For example, I really depend on Mario Mejia. I just don’t know what I would do without him. I really depend on Curt Mader. I don’t know what I would do without him. I really depend on Dr. Gaugh. You don’t want ME pulling any teeth. And, this just goes on and on. There is something about doing God’s work that really brings a team together in a Christ-like way. It is hugely satisfying. It is also very efficient. No arguments required. Everyone pulls in the same direction… doing God’s work.DSC_0180
Honestly, I don’t know anyplace else where I have experienced this. Pure team work. Boy, if could figure out how to bring this same experience into my work place, there is no limit to what we could do.
Great team work everyone !!DSC_0138.Compressed

Reflexiones de Moises; Blog Twelve

Mario Mejia

DSC_0385Mario is just a great guy. We call him our “translator” but Mario has always been much more than that.
First, Mario is just a good person. In the most stressful situations, Mario has never lost his cool and ever shown the slightest bit of anger or impatience. He has always been there for ME. I am not all that pleasant to be around sometimes, and Mario has always been there to help me out. He grabs my bag, he dutifully translates for all of us, and I have never heard “one peep” out of him about HIS needs or concerns. I guess you could say that Mario is a servant. It is pretty obvious, isn’t it? We run him ragged all week. He has to be working first thing in the morning and he has to be working right up until bed time… every night. Then, to top it all off, he has more travel getting to Ecuador and going back home to Guatemala, than any of the volunteers. I nominate Mario for Sainthood.

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Mario is also a good Christian. I could not think of one verse in the Bible about “dedication” and in a matter of seconds, Mario had the bible open and his finger on the verse about Solomon dedicating the temple. Then, with no notice at all, Mario gave the Dedication at our celebration in Jipongato. The nice thing about Mario, is that he doesn’t have to say he is a Christian, because he ACTS like a Christian. His Jesus like manner and servant hood is obvious and very apparent in the way he treats others.
I will be the first to admit that I don’t know where Agua Viva would be without Mario. Mario was with us at Colegio Mark !, Huerto de Getsemani !, Eben Ezer !, Casa Angelina !, Promesa Divina !, Gompuene !, and Jipongato !. Good grief, Mario, has been at every single installation paving the way for a brighter future for literally thousands of disadvantaged people. I could NOT find one photo of me (Jim) without Mario by my side. I don’t think we could have made without him.
Thank you, Mario.