It all started on Thursday when black ash was raining from the sky. Soon after, our friends in Guatemala learned that Volcano Pacaya (located just 15 miles outside the city) had begun erupting. If you can imagine what a dusting of snow looks like, that’s what they had, but with black ash/sand. Several small villages and many crops surrounding the volcano were destroyed.
The volcano has since calmed down, but through the weekend the country was also inundated by Tropical Storm Agatha. Guatemala City and surrounding areas received up to 20 inches of rain. Mudslides and flooding occured in many sections of the country. Sunday was supposed to be even worse, but our team woke up to no rain at all. – which was a welcome relief.
As a result of the storm, three families in La Limonada lost their homes. We are working now to assess the damage and to evaluate the best way to help the families in need. Schools in the city continue to be closed this week, but our schools in La Limonada opened on Monday. We ask you to pray for those who have lost homes, crops or even loved ones as a result of these incidents throughout Guatemala.
One result of the tropical storm that has received the most media attention is the giant sinkhole that swallowed up a three story building and an entire intersection in Zone 2 of Guatemala City. Reports are that the sinkhole is a result of a combination of poor drainage and natural erosion. The location of the sinkhole is in a section of the city our team doesn’t travel through, however it is only about 2 miles away from La Limonada.
Update: As of Noon today, the Guatemala City airport has resumed operations after being closed for five days following the volcano eruption and tropical storm.
We want to thank everyone who has expressed concern. We’re grateful for your calls, emails and prayers. We want to reassure you that everyone on our team is doing well along with all the families and children we serve in La Limonada. All our plans for groups and interns serving in La Limonada this summer will gon on uninterrupted. We will keep you posted on any changes in our summer schedule.