Chorti Agriculture Update
Post date: Nov 4, 2014 4:51:32 PM
For nearly eight years (since 2004) I regularly made 1 - 3 trips a year to Copan Ruinas to visit the Chorti people and to help with their agriculture projects. In September of 2011, I made one of three trips that year to work on further development of our Extension program but little did I know that it would be three years before I would be back!
So, it was a great phone call this summer from Dan asking if I might be interested in partnering with him and Baptist Rural Life Ministries as the project expands in Honduras on into Guatemala. The last week of August I traveled to Honduras to visit old friends like Obando and to become acquainted with many new ones. The project has grown tremendously under Dan’s leadership combined with the really great workers in the field.
Remember this is an agricultural society that is bound up in food production with some production of cash crops like coffee. Our purpose is to glorify God through our agriculture training while sharing the Gospel in word and deed. We begin with committed Christian extensionists who are sent out to villages. Through them we identify possible leaders in villages that we intensely and consistently train. These leaders are taught both agriculture and God’s word. Our prayer is that these leaders will come to know Christ and lead others to Christ in their village as they themselves teach good agriculture practices in the village.
I regularly remind our extensionists, our leaders and any in the villages that participate in our agriculture training of these three principles:
- We are experts. We intend to provide the best in training and experience known throughout the world. We ourselves constantly improve through continuing education and we work hard to develop contacts with the best experts in the world.
- We are here to stay. So many projects start strong, develop great interest and then leave as if they are finished. We don't see an ending, we intend to continue to be there to provide agriculture education, share the gospel and disciple.
- We trust God in all we do. We are quick to give God glory and to seek Him in all we do. We believe firmly that because of our faith in God and our dependence on Him, He will bless our efforts and consequently, the Chorti. This has been evident from the start.
As we see God working amongst the Chorti these things are evident and need our prayer:
- For more Christian extensionists who will come along beside us to extend our outreach. These extensionists would live in the middle of several villages and serve as a source of biblical discipleship, evangelism and agricultural training.
- For the Spirit to move among the Chorti calling out leaders that we can train and disciple.
- For the physical safety of everyone. There have been many murders in the area and even our own people have had family members gunned down. I gave an extension training while in Honduras and asked the participants to tell me the greatest problems the Chorti face today and they all voted murderers/killers as the second most important problem behind lack of good land!
- For productive crops. There has been a tremendous drought this year and food is in short supply. Also there is a worldwide problem in coffee called La Roya or coffee leaf rust. This problem is especially bad in Central America and will affect small coffee growers and also coffee harvesters. Coffee is a cash crop that provides needed money for school, clothes, shoes, etc. This video is a good look at the problem. Just click the link. Understanding La Roya
- For Christian agriculturists who love agriculture and want to share the Gospel and hopefully speak Spanish. We need people who will come alongside our workers teaching them and helping them in the work. It would be great to have a US team of agriculturists who would consistently and constantly be providing agriculture training and Christian encouragement.