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Guatemala’s Unsung Heroes

It’s my last day in Guatemala. Our teams are going into prisons, orphanages and hospitals. We look for those who are hurting and most hungry for hope. They’re all around us. And everywhere we go, we find followers of Jesus have preceeded us. They look like Marco (that’s him in the pic), who seem…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes

It’s my last day in Guatemala. Our teams are going into prisons, orphanages and hospitals. We look for those who are hurting and most hungry for hope. They’re all around us.

And everywhere we go, we find followers of Jesus have preceeded us. They look like Marco (that’s him in the pic), who seems to know anonymous Christ followers in villages all around here. Marco has been introducing us to friends who need a helping hand in their ministries.

They look like Duane Ficker of Adonai Ministries. Duane flew me out here and shared his contagious joy along the way. He and his family moved from St. Louis to a remote village in Guatemala 15 years ago because they felt God asking them to care for his poor.

You can hear Duane’s heart as he shares about a family:

The family needs to go to a city about 5 hours from here, where no one speaks their native Quiche. Dad is very sick now and has begun to drink heavily. Mom has a very limited understanding of her diagnosis, and at the moment is asymptomatic, which makes her less likely to fight for her family.

I felt her desperation as she explained that they had no money, no food and no way of paying for a stay in another city. And who would take care of her other children? And even though the medical care is free, how will she buy diapers and food while they are in treatment? And what if her husband dies there….how will she get his body home for burial?  As she spoke, I asked the Lord for wisdom. What words could I give her that would turn her eyes to her only hope at this point.

Jackie Gu left her job as a marketing manager in San Francisco to go on the World Race. She is helping head up our Unsung Hero campaign. Here’s how she describes it:

What defines an unsung hero you ask? As my teammate Meg puts it: “Unsung Heroes are the people working behind the scenes, helping those in need, never receiving recognition for their good deeds. They have minimum but give everything they have to those less fortunate. These people spend their lives doing for others and giving back to the community-literally being the hands and feet of Jesus. Their love for Jesus is what motivates them and keeps them going on the hard days.”

This month, my team Fire Starters and I are working directly with World Race founder and L Squad coach Seth Barnes to find these unsung heroes. Why? So we can share their stories with the world and open new doors for future World Racers to serve and assist these people with their ministries. We are pioneering this important and timely initiative and need your help!

What can you do?
You can help us by giving me the name, and contact information of someone who fits the above description. They are Christ/Kingdom focused, and meet a local need who need help with their ministry.

As a first priority, we are looking for unsung hero contacts in Guatemala and El Salvador but we are looking for worldwide contacts as well.

Think hard about this and facebook me or email me your contacts. We start to compile this list tomorrow morning.

I appreciate every contact you can provide me.

Our BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) is to have U2 write a song about one chosen unsung hero, and this hero could have come from you!

Would you help us? Yesterday we set a goal of finding ten new people like Marco who are God’s unsung heroes. We’re focusing on Guatemala (and El Salvador next) because we’re here. But we’d love to hear about the unsung heroes you know about around the world.

Either email Jackie or put your contact directly into our database here.

Comments (4)

  • What an encouragement to see God and His incredible work in the world! We all have a chance to participate in this glorious venture following Jesus. Praise Him!

  • Thanks Seth for casting the vision to find these hidden saints and let the world know about the John 15 fruit that “shall remain.” I can only image how these “fresh discoveries” change the hearts of those who find them and encourage the hearts of those that our found – an exponential win-win!

  • I am a missionary in Honduras, formerly in Guatemala, and have had the privilege of knowing Brother Marco for years. He is a true servant of the Lord. This photo reminds me of the time he picked up myself and my family at the airport which kept us from having to ride public transportation. We were exhausted, and it was a tremendous blessing. Marco has served tirelessly for years, many times without a vehicle. He helps everyone he can, even picking up people on the road, or transporting people from long distances for medical care.

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.



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