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Just what happens in the Bodega?


Dolesailinghalf“Bodega” in Guatemala  means warehouse (in Dominican Republic= discount grocery store and why I have trouble learning a new language)…OK back to the subject.  It starts out in the USA.  Medical supplies and equipment are collected.  Some ministries in Guatemala do their own collection and Vine International is their designated shipper.   For example, in this container there are designated medicine pallets for Health Talents, vitamins from Two Rivers Church for the feeding ministry that David Alvarez does for children in need, a box for the Hospital Buen Samaritano in Chichicastenango with patient monitors from friends of theirs, the Christian hospital in San Ramundo has five pallets waiting for them and three boxes came for Hospital Shalom in Peten.  The rest of the space was taken up by “undesignated” product,and several excellent exam tables.  Two of those are already in use in a clinic in the city that removes gang tattoos.  They have an office for a pastor friend of ours to do counseling.  

All these things are put on pallets by Bruce White in the warehouse just south of Knoxville.  He often works well into the night the week before a container goes out.  He and Woody will load the palletized load usually on a Dole container (buy Dole bannanas – yea!).  Dole lets us send our stuff for half cost, instead of them paying  full fare for an empty container.  The container is sealed.  A huge amount of paper work gets fired around the US and Central America and the driver beats feet for Mobile AL.  There it is put on a container ship (see photo above).  If the container leaves Knoxville on Monday about noon it will be on the water off Puerto Barrio, Guatemala on Friday.  Customs agents inspect the documents and on occasions inspect the load.  Bruce has over 80 containers under his belt.  If you ever ship with us you will learn how picky he is, but folks he gets our stuff here usually unmolested. 

Another driver is found on this side of the Gulf of Mexico and  drives it to Dole’s yard in Guatemala City.  We get it the next day.  Often we have the container at our warehouse 12 to 14 days from loading in Knoxville TN.  It is fun to watch the seal cut and the doors open, back it up to the dock and start the unloading process.  We had this one totally palletized, unloaded in 45 minutes.  An earlier container half palletized and half used wheelchairs took three hours with help from our neighbors. 

In a week or 1o days after arrival the designated items will be where they were intended.  David Alvarez says, “thank you for all you do for my country.”  Are you kidding?!?  We are merely doing what the LORD asks, we can do no less.  David is planting churches, using medical clinics and feeding programs to share Jesus.   Pastor Sanchez laughs with joy when we can supply his request for two exam tables.  He gets to share Jesus with gangbangers. The tables will in time become garbage, the souls saved will last an eternity.  The only things eternal are God, His Word, and the souls of men, so says the Bible.  I guess that means we get to haul trash so our friends can share the Light of the World.   No David and Pastor  Sanchez, itis we who thank you and our LORD for the opportunity to serve here!

We can not do this well without your support – Time, Talent, and Treasure!  Thank you.  Checkout the photo section for photos of this most recent container…  (I will leave the hummingbirds photos until mid November and then remove ).

In Christ,  Dennis and Cindy McCutcheon

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Dave Russell permalink
    30/10/2009 03:42

    Your doing GREAT job keeping us posted. Thanks for your hard work. Perhaps you have seen the video of the inaugural trip and shipment to Guataemala on Vine’s blog. It’s amazing to look at your photos and see how far Vine has come. And as I think back over history, I’d like to give a quick tip of the hat to Dennis and Doris Rice.

    Bless you guys and the work you are doing.


    • 30/10/2009 07:47

      Hey Dave,
      You are so right. I started coming with biomedical technicians shortly after Dennis and Doris Rice started with Vine. They have been God’s people, in God’s timeing for Vine International. I wish we could have had a longer time together as we exchanged roles here in Guatemala. We miss ’em.
      Thank you brother for your encouragement.

      In Christ, Dennis and Cindy McCutcheon


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