Christian relief ministry has great spring

By May 18, 2007

USA/Honduras (MNN) — While spring isn't quite over in the United
States, the Spring short-term mission season is over for Christian humanitarian organization International Aid.

IA's Manager of Church Relations Kurt Leppart says it was a
successful season. "We had seven
groups travel down, working in nine rural villages in the mountains of
Honduras. Those individuals were representing five churches and six Rotary Clubs
in the [West Michigan] area."

Leppart says 103 volunteers did a lot of work. "With
those volunteers, we installed 63 water filters, built 111 Lorena stoves, and
constructed 10 latrines in those villages."

While helping with physical needs is important, that's not
all they're concerned about, says Leppart. "Our task is to be faithful to
Matthew 25 in caring for 'the least of these,' in order to accomplish Matthew 28,
which is to make disciples. So as part of the trips, my wife and I do an
extensive education on the biblical mandates to care for the poor."

What's interesting about their "trip program" is that they may
not go to the same place every year. Leppart says if they're helping a family
in Honduras, the family has to provide "50 percent of the materials and
be prepared for us when we get there. We provide 50 percent, and we actually
build it together. The community identifies the needs. The community is working
with us, and we're training them to continue the work after we

Not only does this program help change communities overseas,
it inspires people to be even more involved locally. "We just
found out about a 17-year-old from one congregation who decided to form a
service group. Throughout the whole summer, they will average one
service project a week with a group of youth from their church to keep the
conversation going about serving people in our communities."

If you'd like more
information about how you can help International Aid with special projects like
these, click here.  

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