December 6, 2021
Dear Friends and Family in Jesus,
Hopefully, you have recovered from 'stuffed' thanksgiving as well as a Thanksgiving celebration for how fortunate we are. And yet, I am sure some, if not many, have heartache over family/friends no longer present, lost jobs and other strife during the almost past two years. I heard a sermon this past weekend that presented this question, "How many were giving thanks for what grieves you?" That was a question we would rather not hear; and yet it is true that the challenging times we face are ultimately our greatest time of spiritual growth. I look back over my life and now can say this is true; but at the time I am not so sure I was 'giving thanks in all things.'
We failed to let you know in November how the fundraiser at Evergreen turned out. What can I say, except that it was tremendous! There were less than half of the normal vendors and there were questions circulating regarding how many people would attend . . . Well, it was incredibly well attended and so were our sales! Thank you for your prayers.
Richard returned to Ecuador one last time for the year to continue work on specific projects from his previous visit. Most of which are pretty much mundane and probably of little interest to you, but he was so glad to get them done. (His words)
We had an estimated bird infestation of over one hundred birds that decided that they needed a communal home in two of our trees as well as the clinic roof area. Well, you can imagine what that did to the ground below and the clinic – a major sanitary crisis never seen in all the years we have been in Floron. The roof railing is covered with silver bird tape and the one tree looks like a Halloween prank. It is an orange tree so it can not be trimmed. The other tree normally is trimmed every 1 ½ to 2 years but received an early shave.
The tape and hanging reflectors are hard to see in this photo, but hope it will give the birds the scare of their lives!!
The back of the water plant has several very important pieces of equipment that were damaged by the sun. It was baked by the sun because we had to remove the huge rubber tree that originally protected that equipment. So, a new extensive cover was built by our pastor/construction friend Ramon. Through the years he has done most of the major construction projects for Richard.
Before that project, Richard performed some maintenance on the standby water generator.
Richard also enjoyed the harvest of the first ripe papaya that sits just outside our bedroom window. I am jealous!!!!!! We now have five fruit trees – oranges, papaya, mango, limon and banana. One would think that we run a fruit plantation instead of a clinic and water plant!!!! It has taken a lot of years to develop.
Last, but more important than the previous section, concerns the clinic. We just added our 7th specialist that is collaborating with the foundation (clinic) to offer their services to our patients. Dra. Patricia Morales, a neurologist, will offer services on Fridays. All the credit goes to Dra. Silvia for putting in all the necessary work to make it happen. What a blessing for our patients.
We wrote to you in our October update letter our concerns for staff devotions. As indicated in the update, agreements were made and I (Richard) report to you now that it has been quite successful. We are so thankful that it continues to be so. In Touch Ministries ‘In Touch’ magazine (En Contacto) is used Monday through Thursday with different leaders and Friday is a special Bible study also given by staff taking turns to present.
Richard did not leave home empty handed. He brought with him a personal note to each of our staff and a monetary gift. I wish I could give each of you a hug. . . We have never given a monetary gift previously. . . But, not only knowing their poverty but also the humble, trustworthy individuals they are, it felt very right. . . and you participated and made it possible.
We both will return to Ecuador January 3rd, God willing. Another year has come about where we were/are not able to hold a Christmas party for the staff in December. So once again it will be held next year – in January. It does not look like we will be sending out our usual Christmas postcard so I will extend our best wishes for this Advent Season, a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! This verse says it best:
"I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every
prayer of mine making request for you with all joy, . . ." Philippians 1:3 & 4
Our sincerest thanks to you for your prayers and contributions (in many ways). May you be blessed by your willingness to extend a hand to the impoverished in El Floron, Ecuador.
Please pray for Dra. Silvia as she now has a kidney problem that needs attention immediately. Flow to the urethra is limited. They will try a shunt first, otherwise surgery will be necessary.
Dios los bendiga ahora y 2021,
Richard, Elizabeth and
Fundación "Yo Te Amo," CO Board <><