A 30-member team from the Sisters of St. Francis in Dubuque leaves for a mission in Honduras today. Sister Rita Goedken, says they’ll be helping members of one Honduran village. Goedken says the Franciscan community has been studying water issues for a couple of years and wanted to become proactive on behalf of poor people around the world and they established what they call the "Sister Water Project."
Goedken says they have several tasks ahead. She says they’ll dig water trenches, lay pipes, and bring water to the village that currently does not have water within the village. Goedken says they’re providing most of the manual labor. Goedken says they’re working with a team from Le Mars which has led missions to Honduras in the past, and that team is buying the pipes and furnishing the tools and direction for the job.
Goedken says it’ll be work, but she also expects a lot of fellowship too. Goedken says they’re really looking forward to meeting the people, as the Honduran people are committed to working alongside them. She says some members of the Iowa group are fluent in Spanish, and others can "put in a word here or there." Goedken says they’ll be providing a valuable service for this village, but expect to gain more than they give.
"I think all of us that are going on the trip are pretty convinced that we’re going to be more change, transformed, touched, and delighted even than people that we meet and are working for," Goedken says, "so we are going to have some good stories to tell when we come back." Goedken says volunteers have helped pay for the mission. She says they’re appreciative to people around the country who have committed funds to the effort. Goedken says they committed to paying for the flight of the group, and the cost of the pipes and other materials, making the whole cost between 40 and $45,000. They will still take help from anyone who wants to donate.
Goedken says donations can be sent to: The Sisters of St. Francis, 3390 Windsor Avenue, Dubuque, Iowa 52001-1311. And she asks that you designate your donation for the Sister Water Project. The Sisters of St. Francis team will return December 1st.