Reaching a great city and beyond
Kenton and Adriana Wood
WHAT A BUNCH OF BANANAS WILL DO….
Rebalsito is a small dusty town on the Pacific coast with a population of 1200 souls and is surrounded by dozens of hamlets. Perhaps there are 10,000 people in a 20 mile radius who eke out a living by fishing, planting coconuts, corn, papaya and bananas. The land is fertile and productive.
However, a hurricane hit the area four years ago and decimated most of the agriculture in the area. The people have become discouraged. They do not have the resources to start over and on top of that the problems of the mostly dysfunctional families blunt their desire to provide.
Our missionary Heriberto, wife Arely and three daughters moved into this town a little more than a year and a half ago and been sharing the Gospel and the hope that comes with it. He has encouraged the people to step out in faith and has helped heal some of their family conflicts.
Heriberto and an agricultural engineer motivated the fifteen people in the congregation to adopt a banana plantation project. The proceeds would go to support Heriberto and family, build a clinic and a church. They were excited.
They talked to a person who would rent 10 acres of land for a period of 5 years. Usually you pay up front the rent for all 5 years, but he agreed that we only pay for one year, trusting we will pay the other four after our first harvest.
Then another man lent us his tractor if we would pay the diesel. Another man offered us water from his well at no cost if we would extend the large hoses.
Another man offered us the seedling banana plants and pay him after our first harvest. Bananas have no seeds, but a mature banana plant produces several baby stalks which are dug up and replanted. (see photo on left)
We were impressed. God was bringing together a project for us. I thought, if God is so clearly putting the pieces together, let´s do it. I had another agricultural engineer do a conservative study of costs, marketing and profits. We wanted to make sure we did our homework.
He calculated that by the second harvest we would start making a good profit and during the remaining four years have enough funds to support Heriberto, and build the clinic and church. The project was named the Cosecha Milagrosa, Miraculous Harvest.
This project fits into our goal to find self-supporting projects, be able to hire locally, and transform communities. So, as we have stepped out in faith to plant churches, now its bananas.
The time from when the seedlings are planted until harvest is 10 months. During these months the fields must be weeded, watered and fumigated. For this we need to pay the diesel for the tractor, and hire four men to work every day until the first harvest.
Then harvesting begins and bananas are cut every two weeks. The first year harvests will be used to pay the rent of the land for the four remaining years, pay for the seedlings and pay wages into the 2nd year.
This project has impacted the whole area. It is the talk of the town, of the region….that a small church would have this kind of vision to help the people. (This is our team for this project. photo above)
We are now entering the 5th month of the project and need $1,500 per month for the remaining 5 months. That’s a total of $7,500. This one time investment will begin to support our missionary family by the 2nd harvest, and build the clinic and the church by the last harvest.
I want to invite you to be part of this Miraculous Harvest project. You may contact me about how to donate. Kentonwood@aol.com
THANKSGIVING ON THE RIVER
We have had so much rain and flooding this year that it’s not until the Thanksgiving weekend that we were able to do our annual men´s canoe trip down the river. The river is near the town of Rebalsito where our banana plantation is located.
We leave Guadalajara Thursday afternoon and return Saturday night. It’s a time for study in the Word, hunting at night for crocodiles, ministering to the men in the town, and going down a river that pours into the ocean.
I would love to take any of my faithful readers on this great adventure. (That´s my 85 year old father-in-law in the canoe). We can only sail during the rainy season…August to October.
We are very thankful for your faithfulness over these many years. And we are thankful to the Lord that my wife Adriana’s health has improved drastically. Careful nutrition, alternative meds and exercise have been the answer.
Happy New Year
For the Kingdom,
Kenton and Adriana Wood
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