Archive for the Rabinal Achi Category

Feb 22

Update from Irma

2018 | by Josiah | Category: Field Updates,Global,Prayer,Rabinal Achi

Some of you may recall that February 2017, Irma, one of the wonderful people we have come to know well and partner with in Guatemala, had found out she needed foot surgery. She has asked us to share a letter to you all:

Greetings dear brothers and sisters in Christ,

My family and I have been so blessed by Desert Springs Church who has supported us in many ways. I am writing this note to specifically thank all of you who prayed and supported us financially when I broke my foot at the end of February 2017. After a doctor checked my foot I was told that I had to wait in the hospital for a week for surgery that needed to be done.  At the time, baby Andres was sick with stomach problems and Pamela had just caught the chicken pox, it was impossible for me to be away from them for so long. Going to a private clinic to have the surgery done was our best option, but we knew it was too expensive for us. We trusted that God was going to provide and He did indeed! God is faithful and worked through you to show us once more His faithfulness and His love.  It was a tough time for our family health-wise but our God is an awesome God and used you to let us know that we were loved and cared for.

After surgery, I went to physical therapy for more than two months. It took me more than 6 months to recover. I am now well enought that just a couple of weeks ago, I started to ride my bike again to work! This has helped our family save on transportation cost.  Praise God I’m doing well and back to a normal busy life with three active children that need my care. Please pray that we raise and guide them to love our God.

Our family is doing well, Praise God! Pamela is going to be 8 in March. She is back in school attending the second grade. Carlie is in Preschool and is going to be 6 also in March. Andres is turning two years old in February. Byron is also doing well. I ask for your prayers for his safety.  He takes his motorcycle everyday to work and the road is not in good condition.

We wanted to update you with our status since the surgery and let you know how much we appreciate your kindness and generosity toward our family. We pray for your ministry among the Achi, as well as, your ministry among the pastors. Thank you so much and may our God continue to bless your ministry and your lives.


Byron, Irma, Pamela, Carlie and Andres.

Ismalej family photo 2018

Feb 13

2018 Medical Mission Trip to Guatemala

2018 | by Josiah | Category: Global,Mission Opportunity,Prayer,Rabinal Achi,Trips


This year DSC is planning to return to serve the Rabinal Achi in Guatemala with a Medical Missions team. The dates have shifted to a day later than previously announced. It is set for May 25-June 3.

If you would like to get more details about this year’s trip, you can sign up here or on the DSC app. This sign up only expresses interest and serves as a request for more information on the trip.

Please pray for individuals as they consider going to serve in this capacity, for the work that will be done by the team God is gathering, for preparations that will be done during this next few months, and for the heart of those that the team will be in contact with during this trip.

Feb 4


2018 | by Josiah | Category: Field Updates,Global,Missionary Care,Prayer,Rabinal Achi

Our dear missionary, Rodrigo Barrera, went home to be with the Lord this past Tuesday (January 30). Rodrigo and his wife Carol have been missionaries in San Miguel Chicaj, Guatemala, for over thirty years. They headed up the translation team that completed the New Testament, in Mayan Achi, in 2010. Since then the Barreras have worked with translation distribution and usage. Carol also has been working with the Achi team that is translating the Old Testament. And in addition to helping with Scripture usage, Rodrigo continued his ministry of discipling, counseling, and coaching men, young and old, pastors and lay.

Rodrigo had been experiencing some heart problems since Saturday night, January 27. Sunday he was seen in a nearby hospital, then released. But within 24 hours they realized that he needed more tests, and he was transported by ambulance to Guatemala city (3-4 hours away). While in the hospital and under good care, early Tuesday morning he went to be with the Lord, as far can we can tell, quickly and without much pain.

Rodrigo had always wanted to be buried in San Miguel, even though the Barreras were spending most of their time in their home in Cheyenne, Wyoming. We fondly remember Don Rodrigo saying, “I want to live where bananas grow” (the lyrics to one of his favorite songs). We think he would have equally said, “When I go to be with the Lord, I want that to happen in a land where bananas grow.”

His body was transported to San Miguel late Wednesday evening. When it arrived at around 3:00 a.m. early Thursday morning, about 70 people had stayed up to care for the casket and actually start the first worship and memorial service for Rodrigo, which lasted for several hours.

The second service was held Thursday evening, and lasted for five hours going until after midnight. The length of these three services was not compulsory (just one service is standard, as it is here in the states). Rather the Achi people longed to grieve, recall memories, celebrate the life of a man who poured out so much to disciple others, and sing of their faith and hope in the Lord Jesus.

Photo Feb 01, 8 23 01 PM

At this main service, Thursday evening, Pastor Clint Moore represented both DSC and Christ Church as one of the key speakers. Over 600 were in attendance at this service, with dozens of churches and pastors represented.

Photo Feb 01, 9 32 06 PM - Copy

Photo Feb 01, 11 58 20 PM - Copy

Then Friday morning was the final service, a memorial service, then a processional of the casket, with a Mariachi band (Rodrigo was from Mexico, and loved music) and several hundred people following, around the plaza of San Miguel, past his and Carol’s home, and then to the cemetery outside of town. There the final part of that day’s service was held, as prayers of thanksgiving for him were offered to the Lord, final songs were sung, and his body was lowered into the grave. Several commented that never in the history of San Miguel had they seen, heard of, such numbers of people coming from all over the region of Baja Verapaz.

Photo Feb 02, 10 08 34 AM - Copy

Photo Feb 02, 10 17 57 AM - Copy

Photo Feb 02, 10 27 54 AM - Copy

Photo Feb 02, 10 13 59 AM - Copy

Photo Feb 02, 11 26 18 AM - Copy

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Rodrigo’s daughter was able to fly in from overseas. Several others flew in from out of the country, including Rodrigo’s sister, several fellow workers from Wycliffe, and a small group from Desert Springs church and Christ Church.

El libro de Psalmos dice que “Esta vida es solamente un vapor, o una respiración”
Que ací sea, un vapor hasta que nos encontremos con R. otra vez.
Pero aun mas importante que nosotros, con R., nos encontremos con Cristo.

The book of Psalms says “this life is only a vapor, or a breath.”
May it indeed be a vapor, until we meet Rodrigo again,
But more important, until we, with Rodrigo, meet Christ.

-Pastor Ron Giese