Ohio delegation visits dedication in Chex

On 2002-07-04, a delegation left Ohio to attend the dedication of the new Catholic Church building in Chex (pronounced Chaysh, in accord with the K'iche' Mayan dialect). Chex is a mountain aldea (village) in the municipality of Aguacatan, Department of Huehuetenango, Guatemala, Central America. Guatemala's civil war saw the destruction of the town center of Chex. Now, with funds raised in Ohio from Guatemalan immigrants and their friends, and with countless hours volunteered from the residents of Chex, the new Church is built. All the materials for this Church had to be carried by hand up the mountain. Many of the residents of Chex have relatives working in Ohio and sending money home to support the family and the community. Here are the delegation members, Rolando, Herb Hurley, Maureen Hammond, Laura Yeomans, Hector Rolando Castellano, and Father Kevin Conroy (at the Cleveland, Ohio, airport at 5:30 a.m.):
A parochia member from San Miguel greets Herb:

Delegation passes a bus accident:

Laura is greeted in Aguacatan:

Maureen found friends:

And she made a whole passel of new friends:

No seat belt law, Father?

Eric remembers loved ones lost on the mountain road to Chex:

Among those waiting to greet the delegation is Santos' son (in the middle):

Here is the new church:

A crowd gathers as Laura passes out letters from relatives in Ohio:

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Last Updated: 2002-12-31
Copyright 2002 Richard Renner