Wednesday Evening August 17
Maasin City, Leyte
Another work day has been completed. We are continuing to make progress. Hallelujah! The work will be near finished when we leave but there will still be many details to complete. The construction team from Bohol will stay until the work is finished. They are employed by IDEA.
Our second day of bible class in the deaf school went well. We presented a short version of who Jesus is, what he has done, and how you can have everlasting hope through him. It was a big concept for a short time with students who have no base knowledge of Christ. Pastor Lawrence is an employee of IDEA. He is deaf and a master of sign language. He works hard teaching sign to several deaf adults in the community, give the deaf students lessons in job skills, and teach them about Jesus. He and his soon-to-be-wife will live as dormitory parents with the students. He is a fabulous story teller. He helped us tell the students the story of Jesus healing the blind man by making mud out of his spit and rubbing it on him. He substituted deaf for blind in the story, however. You should have seen the students faces, completely CAPTIVATED! They were amazed to say the least. it was a great hour with the students. They are so bright, many of them remember all of our names after only one day with them.
I cannot imagine what life would have been like for them before they we connected to IDEA and their deaf education project. Sign language is not readily taught in schools here. Deaf people in this country are ostracized from their communities, neglected, ignored, and have no ability to communicate with others. That was the case for many of IDEA's students. Some students were enrolled at age 5 but some as old as 16. Can you imagine having no ability to effectively convey your thoughts and ideas with anyone for 16 years!? Such frustration and hopelessness. It is wonderful to see them express themselves.
Tomorrow, Thursday, is our last work day. Then we travel to Bohol to see and connect with IDEA headquarters. Pray that we can finish well tomorrow. Pray for us to be quick, effective, and that we would enjoy ourselves. Again, we would be lost without your support at home.
The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers and sisters.