Advances in the construction at Eben-Ezer by Jerry Cardoza
1 – Our entrance from the main road is 2 km (1.25 miles) long, crossing through a river and through big trees of the jungle. It’s finished but given the continued rains of rainy season, it seems to need constant repair. We need to add a layer of gravel to avoid runoff and mud. We hope to be able to complete this soon.
2 – Two small bridges have been built over two creeks to install the driveway, as the property has a lot of water (a river, three creeks and several springs) on it.
3 – We have planted approximately 400 citrus trees (several varieties of oranges, grapefruit, tangerines, lemons, etc.), 50 fig trees (some of which are already producing fruit!), 1000 pineapples plants which will be producing soon, as well as banana, plantain, pomegranate, cupuacu, blackberry, avocado, soursop, olive, coconut and mango plants/trees. We’ve also started a small vegetable garden to grow our own produce.
4 – We have built a dining hall and kitchen, measuring 33 feet by 85 feet which includes a large pantry and a space for a cold room. It also has a covered outdoor cooking area at the rear of the building for cooking over an open fire. It has it’s own septic tank for gray water, its own solar electric system and is plumbed and hooked up to our well. The building is almost complete, with only finishing touches to be added, such as installing the ceramic tile (which is already purchased) and add one more coating of paint.
5 – We have built a volunteer house (which lacks some finishing touches as well) that includes its own septic and solar electric system. It also houses a small tool shed and work area to repair tools and/or machines, along with an electric room for the solar energy set-up.
6 – We built a second housing unit for volunteers with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, living and dining room, along with it’s own plumbing, septic and electrical system.
7 – We drilled and installed a well. While we have a spring-fed creek a short distance from the main campus area, it gets dirty when it rains and we needed an alternate water source. We also built a wooden tower to house the 3,500-liter (approx. 900 gallons) and store water to be fed to the houses.
8 – We are building one dormitory now, which is 70% complete. The floor is being poured and the metal roof is being installed now.
9 – Connected to the dorm, we have built a dean’s residence with two bedrooms, two bathrooms, a kitchen, dining room and living room, as well as an office and meeting area.
10 – We are also currently building our chapel with 3 rooms, two bathrooms (one for men and the other for women) and a storage room at its rear. These room will be used for Sabbath school classrooms, as well as academic school classrooms if need be until the school buildings are built. The chapel is 80% complete, having the roof already installed. The floor will be poured, the interior walls stuccoed and painted and the ceiling installed in the near future.
11 – A fourth house for volunteers (Miguel and Tara’s house) is currently being built as well. The floor, walls and trusses are built and the roof will be installed shortly. Then, the interior dry walls will be built and the exterior stuccoed.
We need still need the following buildings to be built to function best and at capacity:
- Another dorm and dean’s residence
- School building
- At least three more staff houses
Outreach update by Jenny Figueroa
Did we buy an indigenous group??
The Lord guided us to this place and here we have started the work He has given us. When we arrived on the property, we realized that is wasn’t just virgin jungle land with a wide variety of wild plants and animals like we originally thought. There were also several indigenous families living in the middle of nowhere. They are very timid and normally hide from outsiders. When they are seen, they typically disappear as quickly as they appeared.
After praying and asking God for direction as to whether we should ask them to leave the property or not, we decided to visit them and try to “get to know them”. Little by little, a relationship was built and we began to share the love of Jesus with them. Sometimes they come to visit us and tell us that they were just out “taking a stroll”. J Since they do not speak Spanish, communication is limited. But the Lord has provided us with a solar audio bible in their native language! Whenever we can, we play different parts of the Bible for them and they also hover over the player, attentive to every word. God is so Good! We also let them color Bible coloring pages that correlate to the story they are hearing. Both the kids and the adults enjoy this activity.
In my limited knowledge of natural remedies, I try to do what I can to help them when they need basic medical attention. Other times, we take them to the local clinic in town so that they can receive the attention they need.
God has great plans for each of them, as well as for each of us. May the Lord help us to finish His work!