Nuestra Iglesia

Our Church

It is a strange thing to attend a church knowing full-well that you will only be there for a few weeks...  it would have been much easier to just consider it too much trouble and wait to find a church home in Puerto Lempira.     If it had not been for that music, we might have thought the same.  That music...  I heard it while hanging up laundry outside on a Sunday evening.   It sounded like worship music and I was immediately drawn to it.

Alex thought it was coming from a church he had seen just up the cobblestone street from where we are staying.  And so, I ventured out with 2 of our kids, just to see for myself.   As I cautiously walked up by the gate, I was aware of a very strange feeling of stupidity.   All of the Spanish words I'd learned to that point escaped my brain and I could only smile.


Suddenly, the sweetest face smiled at me and walked toward me.  She spoke no English, but listened intently as I tried to cobble together a sentence or two about how much the music reminded me of home.   She invited me in and I saw a room full of people worshiping God in their language.  It was as if I was standing before God's throne where I could see one nation, one people singing before Him in their language while others did the same.   The moment was beautiful.

There are so many things to write about this church.  I have decided to avoid comparisons to the US 'church' in general or to any specific church.  Comparisons here will sound more like judgment.  As so, I present a few observations and allow the comparisons to be your own:

  • The church has A/C - which allows its members to spend their time at church refreshed instead of the sweltering heat they experience at home.   
  • There is one keyboard, a few microphones and an overhead.  There is a computer in back to put the words on the screen when the electricity is going.
  • The congregation sits in either simple, hand-made wooden pews or plastic patio chairs.
  • Every person has a Bible and the congregation reads aloud from God's Word in church.
  • Services:   Sunday morning teaching - 1.5 hours;  Sunday evening teaching & praise - 2 hours;  Tuesday evening prayer service - 2 hours;  Youth - Saturday evening.
  • Prayer - I will add this... other churches have prayer times every day of the week.  Gloria and Hugo go to church for prayer 2 afternoons per week for 2-3 hours.
  • Children- Little children run around on Sunday night unattended.   Children 6 and up participate fully in the services.   Often the children read Scripture at the microphone - large chunks of it.
  • The church is right in the middle of the neighborhood.   Most people walk to and from church.
  • On our first trip to Honduras last November, we took a large number of shoes to an orphanage called Hogar de Amor.   On our first Sunday at this temporary church, we realized that those same children were in Sunday School with our kids!  And Hogar de Amor is not physically located anywhere near our neighborhood!!  Only God could have orchestrated such a thing.
  • The church introduces visitors and all of the people turn and wave and say Bienvenidos (welcome)
  • I was honored when Hondurans called me 'hermana in Cristo' - sister in Christ.
  • One Sunday evening was Pastor Appreciation... this congregation showered their Pastor with beautiful praise, skits, Scripture, music, and gift after gift.   It was shocking to see the outpouring of love.
  • They collect offering in little pocket things with a long stick on the end.  I must comment that I found this highly intimidating and pressure-inducing.   The elders stick the pocket out into a row and everyone sees if you put something in.   Yikes!
  • The congregation wears their best clothing to church... even if it is the same dress every week.  Alex only has shorts. 



Comments

Araratacres said…
I love it! I would much much much rather go to a church like this than to even think about going to a mega church in the states (you know the ones with all the "bells and whistles"). In some ways, your description reminds me of our sweet POCF. I don't ever want to outgrow that feel at our church. hugs to you friend~
WOW WOW WOW...reading about this sweet church is seeing answered prayers before my eyes! I agree with Liz, there are some similarities between this temporary church home that you have found and POCF! Then there are some differences (the offering)! 70 days my friend!
Holly (me.) said…
There is something precious about hearing praise to our Lord sung in more than one language that just brings a smile to my face. In the home church where we met once in Poznan, there were speakers of multiple languages and it was amazing to be singing a song in English while hearing the unfamiliar languages offering the very same praise. In the same way, I feel fortunate in our own church to hear the service en Espanol going on right across the hall at the same time that the same message is being given in English every week.

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