Lighthouse Christian Radio Ministry: August & September 2016

Typical sight the morning after Hurricane Earl passed!
Typical sight the morning after Hurricane Earl passed!

It’s been said “when it rains it pours” and I could attest to that literally after getting back to San Pedro with our transmitter and sought to get things back to normal. I’ve attempted to get this Update out now for quite some time and time just seems to go faster than I’m able to keep up. Grateful for the back-up transmitter which kept us on the air during the week of repairs and just like clockwork our back-up began to give problems just as I arrived with the repaired one. While dealing with all of this, I was still waiting to hear from Miguel who left for Belize City on July 10th for a workshop and had not returned and had no communication with him until recently. So I was back alone again at the Lighthouse and busy with all that was going on while wondering the whereabouts of Miguel and his intentions. A week later the repaired transmitter began giving problems again and at the same time I was called and asked to attend the National Emergency Management Organization (NEMO) meeting as a tropical storm, later to become Hurricane Earl was heading our way and preparations were in the making for its arrival.

Devastation of piers & docks on the shores of Ambergris Caye!
Devastation of piers & docks on the shores of Ambergris Caye!

The Emergency Operation Center was opened and the committee went into action mode with regular updates on the specifics of Hurricane Earl and reports of each committee and their readiness plans would were made accordingly. My role as media was to keep the public updated through Lighthouse Christian Radio and I was asked regularly to pray. I was later asked to be the official Pastor for the EOC, an unexpected honor and privilege to serve the Lord in this capacity and to serve the San Pedro community. Hurricane Earl made landfall as a category 1 hurricane  early Wednesday evening,  August 3 with a direct hit to San Pedro Town and Belize City. With my inability to lift over 10 pounds due to my recent hernia surgery and Miguel unexpected departure; Alan, our Student Summer of Service intern assisted me in making the necessary preparation around the Lighthouse and the other three apartments. The winds began to howled like I hadn’t experienced since the 1961 Hurricane Hattie when I was a child. I was alone at the radio station and most of the night was spent mopping up the water that came in through the bathroom windows that were not properly sealed; so it was back and forth between the apartments most of the night. The fierce eighty plus miles an hour winds and wave surges destroyed 17 piers/docks and left over 15 severely damaged with the beaches filled with debris for miles on the following day. San Pedro began once again to clean up and we were so thankful that there were no loss of lives and minimal damages to homes and businesses. Praise and thanksgiving to the Lord repeatedly for His mercy and goodness toward us!

 

Antennas survives but moved by the powerful winds of Hurricane Earl.
Antennas survives but moved by the powerful winds of Hurricane Earl.

A Closer Look: The morning after the hurricane I was quick to run to the roof to see the condition of our rusting and corroding tower and antennas; they were standing and when the electricity came back up we were once again back on the air. I took a closer look and discovered that although the tower and antennas were not damaged but the long pole that held all four antennas which was mounted on the tower was moved by the fierce wind. They were all still aligned to each other just like before but moved a few inches. We were advised over a year ago to begin looking at replacing both tower and antennas due to sever rust and corrosion after 8 years of weathering the salt air: several tropical storms, a few hurricanes, and multi high speed winds. They have served and still serving us well but we are very aware that they need replacing. Please join us now in praying for God’s provision and timing to have them replaced!

 

Miguel & Clive celebrating his 17th birthday at Caramba's Restaurant several weeks before leaving!
Miguel & Clive celebrating his 17th birthday at Caramba’s Restaurant several weeks before leaving!

Unexpected & Unexplainable: Miguel, the young man that we have been caring for since October 2015, left for a weeklong workshop with Hand in Hand in Belize City and never returned. Prior to his departure, he was giving a lot of behavioral problems and it escalated to epic proportions at school that caused him to be sent home several times and he became very defiant toward me and the rules that were in place. It seems as if every time he would return from spending time in Belize, weather for doctor’s appointment or visiting his limited family, he would come back with an attitude that would take time to get him back in the flow of things here. I came to a point where I did not want him to go back since he had no supervision, authority and was on his own which meant roaming the streets. The problems increased and it became a constant battle weather I was here or traveling abroad for surgery or to the mainland for various reasons. Understanding the sensitivities surrounding his illness, his age and the challenges of the adolescent, and adjusting to his new life on the island with school, friends and daily living I tried very hard to help him. He was to return the day before I was to leave to take our transmitter for repairs when he expressed his desire to stay another week. I explained to him that I really needed him at the radio station since I was going to be gone but he was adamant about staying. I frantically made arrangements for Alan and his father to stay overnights while I was away. And

Miguel at his last doctor's appointment!
Miguel at his last doctor’s appointment!

unfortunately, no one was at the station during the daytime when I was away and thanked God that no emergences occurred the hours unattended. I had not heard from him for over 2 months and it has been extremely painful not knowing where he was and how he was doing and knowing that he was not taking his medication for the entire time. I  recently spoke to him on the phone and asking him many questions seeking to make sense of it all. He mentioned that he was not use to having authority over his life since his mother passed away and that he didn’t like rules. When asked if he is enjoying his freedom of doing whatever he wanted, when he wanted his answered was ‘kinda’ and that he missed me and that he has many regrets. He has agreed to get back on his medication after I painted a grim and realistic picture of what will happen to him if he doesn’t and the irreparable damaged of being off of them for over 2 months period. The story of the prodigal constantly comes to mind as I’m face with what I should do now that I have made contact with him. The prodigal son ‘came to himself’ and I will have to wait for that to take place in his heart and trust the Lord to give me the wisdom needed at that time. I cannot tell you or try to put into words the emotions I’ve experienced over the past few months and countless times took refuge in the “Name of the Lord which is a high tower that the righteous run to and are safe.” Please pray for Miguel that he would come back home to the Lord!

Mural on the wall of San Pedro High School
Mural on the wall of San Pedro High School

The Wall of Hope: A while ago I asked the San Pedro AIDS Commission for a space on the wall where they were painting various murals and slogans about HIV/AIDS. They had used all of the allotted space given to them by the San Pedro High School so I reminded the person in charge of that about our request several years ago requesting a space and was still waiting for an answer. She responded by saying that I could take whatever space was left for us to use for the He Intends Victory mural and I smiled when I saw that a prime spot, which was visible to the main street, was still available. I contacted one of the best mural artist on the island and we collaborated our ideas and came up with this eye-catching mural and it is our prayers that those who need to see it and in need of hope at just the right time will receive it and call us. Thanks so much to those who are co laboring with us in getting the message of hope out to the residence of San Pedro Town that even though there’s no cure for HIV/AIDS, there is living HOPE for those with HIV/AIDS, found only in the Person of Jesus Christ!

 

Opening the Eve of Independence Day Ceremony with prayers!
Opening the Eve of Independence Day Ceremony with prayers!

Belize Celebrates 35 years: I made it back in time for the 10th of September commemoration of the Battle of St. George’s Caye and the carnation of the new Miss San Pedro and was asked to give the Invocation. I’m always surprised and honored whenever I’m asked and consider it a great thrill to invoke God’s blessing and use each opportunity to pray for those in leadership and authority as instructed by Paul the Apostle. Belize’s Independence Day was September 21 and the night before was when the traditional ceremony took place with all of its “pomp & patriotism”, the inspection of the Guard, the raising of the flag followed by a speech by the Mayor, the Area Representative and the leader of the Opposition Party. A few days before, I received a call from the Mayor’s Office asking if I would be available to open the evening with prayer. It excites me that Belize still opens each public gatherings and official ceremonies with an Invocation and I’m always honored and humbled when asked to be the very first to address the crowd and to ask them to join me in asking God’s blessings. Before praying from my heart for the country, it’s leaders, those who serve the people and the residents; I read the Belizean Prayer, a very Spirit filled prayer, followed by the Prayer of Jabez. As I stood before the several thousand gather and about to pray, I asked myself, “Who am I Lord and how did I ever get to do what I’m doing here?” I would never have imagined in my wildest dreams all of the things the Lord has enabled me to do and more importantly, the work He has done in me over the past 22 years since coming back to Belize on September 27, 1994. To God be the glory, great things He has done, is doing and yet to do!

 

Please pray for Miguel, that he would return to the Lord. Pray for me for wisdom the next opportunity I get to speak to him on the phone. Really thankful that I was finally able to contact him recently!

 

Please pray for my financial support as I did not get enough support for this month’s support paycheck!

 

Please pray for the upcoming meeting with the Justice of the Peace & Commissioner of the Supreme Court as I’m Chairing our monthly meetings.

 

Please pray for Monday morning prayer meeting for the students, teachers, staff and administration of San Pedro High School.

 

Please pray for the new San Pedro High School Guidance Counselor as she seeks to be available to the large enrollment of 650 students; very glad to offer her our assistance!

 

Please pray for the many young people that I’ve been reaching out to, sharing with, counseling and mentoring: Jeffrin & Nicole, considering marriage; Roberto, difficult family situation and he’s tossed between night school and helping his mom with sister’s children. Please pray for Jason, he’s changed so much and become more and more isolated from friends and still avoiding any and all contact with me.

Please pray for those in the path of Hurricane Matthew affecting the Caribbean in the next few days!

Thanking God for a clean bill of health on my last Doctor’s check up regarding hernia surgery. Thankful for all who provided accommodations: Vicky with flights, Bulaks for housing me, Aaron to the rescue when stuck in Miami, Enoch & family and others!

Thank you to Jeff & Holly Phillips for their visit to San Pedro Town on the celebration of their 10th Anniversary; I was honored to officiate their wedding and they have been close friends and dedicated supporters. I appreciated their visit to see firsthand the work of the ministry and meet some of the people they’ve read about!

Saying goodbye to Jeff & Holly at the Belize/Guatemala Border!
Saying goodbye to Jeff & Holly at the Belize/Guatemala Border!

Thank you to all who stands with me in gospel of Jesus Christ through your prayers, encouragement, and financial support!

Contact Information in US:

He Intends Victory

P.O. Box 399

Irvine, CA 92650

1-800-HIV-HOPE

Please indicate: Welsh/Belize on your checks or online at:

https://hivictory.wpengine.com/lighthouseradio/

Contact Information in Belize:

Lighthouse Christian Radio Ministry

P.O. Box 166

San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye

Belize, Central America

Office: 011-501-226-4673

Cell : 011-501-605-6123

Email: clivewelsh@gmail.com

Stream: www.galcom.org/xstreamer/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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