WWVA Visits Belize during Spring Break

The Walla Walla Valley Academy (WWVA) mission trip began with a late-night bus ride in March from the academy in College Place, Wash., to the Portland (Ore.) International Airport in time for a 6 a.m. flight to Belize.

Right on schedule, the MD-80 plane took off. Just as it became airborne, there were three loud pops as flames poured from one engine and the smell of smoke filled the air.

Alarm was immediate as passengers realized the plane was no longer gaining altitude and was flying at a low speed. After about 10 minutes of flying in darkness, the lights of Portland came into view and the pilot announced they would be making an emergency landing.

As the plane landed, the sight of the waiting emergency vehicles made it clear God had just protected that plane and the souls on it.

Once the group finally arrived in Belize, they presented a Vacation Bible School (VBS) in the mornings for nearly 200 children. Additionally, they dug a quarter-mile-long trench and footings through rock and clay for lights at La Loma Luz Adventist Hospital in Santa Elena. Many of the hospital staff and patients commented about how wonderful it will be to not have to walk the long driveway in the dark. The WWVA crew finished the project one day early, and they were able to have a lighting ceremony the night before they returned home.

The mission trip was perfect. When the flight was canceled and students missed a day in Belize, nobody complained. When the bus blew a tire and the flies ate participants while they awaited help, nobody complained. When the replacement bus broke down in the middle of Belize, nobody complained. When they dug ditches and taught VBS in 90-degree weather, nobody complained. One couldn't have had a better group of missionaries with whom to work.