Honduras is the third poorest nation in the Americas– right behind Haiti and Nicaragua. We have the opportunity to partner with local Christian leaders in building churches, holding medical clinics and working with children within communities. As much as construction will be a part of this trip, we are doing more than just building a foundation to a church or home. We are building a foundation of hope and one of Jesus Christ with the local school kids. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to make a difference in an area with so much need.
- Luis & Karen Chavarria fmusa.org
- Greg & Jean Hines
Church Planting: Praying to plant 2 churches a year
$40 Help with Medical and Children’s supplies
Give $100 to help plant a church in Honduras. One church will cost $5000 and our goal for 2014 is to plant 2 churches.
- Children’s Day Camp
Honduras Information and History
Honduras, a nation situated in the Western Hemisphere, relies heavily on exports of coffee, banana and apparel. Honduras is also highly vulnerable to changes in commodity prices and frequent natural disasters. Increased investments in the maquila (export processing apparel assembly) and non-traditional export segments have allowed Honduras to expand its export base to include products such as seafood, palm oil, fruit, lumber and beef. The country’s economy is closely linked to that of the United States, which is its biggest trading partner. Honduras continues to run large trade deficits due to its large-scale imports of machinery and transport equipment, chemicals, food stuff and industrial raw materials.
Spanish is the dominant national language. Although originally imposed by the conquistadores, it has been widely spoken in Honduras for over two hundred years. Almost all residents speak Spanish, although some also speak English or one of the Native American languages. Honduran Spanish has a distinct accent. Hondurans use some words that are not heard in other Spanish-speaking countries, and this gives their speech a distinctive character.
In spite of the 1969 war with El Salvador and tense relations with Nicaragua, the Honduran people feel that they are part of a larger Central American community. There is still a sense of loss over the breakup of Central America as a nation. The flag has five stars, one for each Central American country (Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Costa Rica). Factory goods are not labeled "made in Honduras," but "Central American product, made in Honduras." Independence Day (15 September) is shared with the other Central American countries, and is a fairly muted national holiday. Some people complain that there is little point celebrating independence from Spain, since Honduras has become virtually a colony of the United States. By 1992, Columbus Day had become a day of bereavement, as Hondurans began to realize the depth of cultural loss that came with the Spanish conquest. May Day is celebrated with parades and speeches. In the 1990s, the national government found this symbol of labor unity threatening and called out the army to stand with rifles before the marching workers.
Cultural Sensitivity Tips
Remember that you are a guest in another country and it is important that you respect and honor cultural differences. The following are some tips to keep in mind during your interactions with the people from Honduras.
• Hondurans greet each other with a handshake, which sometimes is followed by a hug or kiss on the cheek. They are very affectionate people.
• Conversations may be difficult, since you will most likely not speak Spanish. A smile will go a long way. Try to learn some simple phrases like hello, good-bye, and thank you.
• Don’t make assumptions. For example, do not assume that everyone is a Christian, or that a person can’t read or speak English. Keep in mind that many Hondurans understand or speak English, and they may or may not share that information with you. Choose your words wisely, as they may understand everything you say.
• Be mindful of what you say around translators, drivers, and those who run the guesthouses. Often friendships are formed with those who serve most closely with the teams. This can lead to a false sense of familiarity and shared understanding. Please keep in mind that this is their home too. Many grew up and still live in the very communities in which you will serve.
• Don’t assume that because you’ve been there for a few days that you know how to fix things. We are there to serve and encourage. They lead, we follow.
• If you are invited into a home, be gracious and accept gifts that you are offered. If it is something you cannot eat, please reply with a simple “No thank you.” Elaborating about why you cannot eat certain things could be offensive.
• Be mindful of your reaction to situations and environments, even in the most desperate situation. Just as you would prepare the best for a guest, they too offer the best they have.
Things you should know when traveling to Honduras
Do you know the difference between Honduran and American time? For Americans, time has authority. It’s limited. It has real value. Time should be saved, not wasted. Combine that with our love of efficiency, and we get frustrated when time is wasted. For Hondurans, time is seen as unlimited. Itineraries and schedules are merely guidelines. They put much more emphasis on deepening personal relationships and community. Something to remember when you’re struggling to be flexible.
When you visit a new place, you often enter a culture that is different from the one you left. The differences can make it very difficult to adjust to your new surroundings. Dealing with the differences can be very unsettling or exciting, but they are part of experiencing a new culture.