Friday, October 27, 2017

I already miss Honduras

I’m sitting in the Atlanta airport waiting for a flight to Des Moines. But I’m already missing Honduras. Actually, I began to miss Honduras as I was sitting in the exit lounge in the San Pedro Sula, Honduras airport.

It has been harder to leave because of the difficult time Honduras is going through.
The rains this year have been more than I remember and the roads are in worst shape than they have been in years. People are saying that this is the worst situation, in terms of the climate, since Hurricane Mitch.

Yesterday I drove to La Lima, near San Pedro Sula, leaving after confirmations in Dulce Nombre de Copán and lunch with the bishop. On the road between San Pedro and the exit to the airport, before La Lima, there were large crowds of people on the side of the road. I couldn’t see much more in the dark. This morning I saw that there was massive flooding in some of the neighborhoods and there were still homes under water. Of course, these are, for the most part, the home of the poor. I saw one house of wooden planks, about four meters square, with water up to where the “window” would be. I didn’t get my camera out fast enough, but here’s a photo from the plane.

I also will be gone in the middle of the election campaigns. I am glad for this, but this is sad. On the way to confirmations in Quebraditas on Wednesday I passed through El Zapote Santa Rosa and saw a truck unloading tin roofing and wood for buildings. A fired told me that the politicians were handing these out. The roads at the entrance to El Zapote are terrible – but the politicians are giving handouts. It’s election time, of course.

But I really miss the chances for me to serve. About 250, mostly young people, were confirmed in the parish this Wednesday and Thursday. The liturgies generally went very well. There were moments of great joy as I looked out on the crowd and saw young people I knew from visits to their communities. In Dulce Nombre, Padre German reminded me to add a petition for the ill, partly because one of those to be confirmed was suffering from cancer. For me, it was a blessing to be able to add that prayer to the prayers led by the recently confirmed.

Waiting for the bishop in Vertientes
There are lots more that I miss. I’m homesick – for Honduras. But I pray that my visit to Iowa may help build and deepen solidarity with the poor in Honduras and throughout the world.

But I’ll be back soon.

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