CPHS makes a difference in Guatemala

Lauren Kriss

Over Spring Break while most of us were playing video games, tanning, watching scary movies and sleeping until noon, juniors Megan Forbes and Dalis Leyendecker were up at sunrise everyday making a difference.

Along with Stonehill Seventh Day Adventist Church, Forbes and Leyendecker spent the week building a Sabbath school for a struggling church in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala.

According to Forbes, the cement mixing, roof installation and plumbing was worth the effort when she witnessed the kids’ reactions.

“It was a blessing to see the joy on the kids faces,” Forbes said. “They were all so happy to finally have their own classrooms.”

After experiencing Guatemala, Leyendecker says she appreciates the conveniences we have in the U.S.  –  like hot water – and has a deeper respect for the Guatemalan way of life.

“They work so hard,” Leyendecker said. “We could learn a lot from them.”

As for Forbes, the humility and kindness of the people in Guatemala made the biggest impression on her.

“The church members, at the last service, were remarkable,” Forbes said. “They showered us with gifts and tears. They were such wonderfully kind people.”

The humble attitude of the Guatemalans has inspired Leyendecker to continue doing missionary work.

“I would love to go on another mission trip,” Leyendecker said. “I loved helping people who really needed it and were really grateful. It made me want to travel more so I can see other people’s culture.”

After her trip to Guatemala, Forbes wants to work in a health clinic in India or Cambodia sometime in the future because of how rewarding it was to work in Guatemala.

“I am very grateful to have gotten this opportunity,” Forbes said.