Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Roatan, Honduras is but a shell, awaiting a roof and interior finishes. The growing congregation meets under the shelter within the walls of what will be the completed church. Submitted photo
In His Time
By Gisele McKnight
When Kara Thompson Mejia starts to talk about her life and her ministry in Roatan, Honduras, she comes alive with enthusiasm.
"It's my home now," she told the congregation at Christ Church Cathedral on April 19. "I can’t imagine being anywhere else."
Kara and her daughter, Kelly, 7, are home in New Brunswick for a few months, visiting her parents, the Rev. Gordon and Bell Thompson in Miramichi. In late May, her husband, Nelson, and son, Stephen, 12, will join them. Both Kara and Nelson are available to speak to congregations and church groups, although they are obviously popular — every Sunday is already booked. Weekdays are still free, however.
Kara felt the call to minister in Honduras when she graduated from St. Stephen University in 1996. She applied to SAMS (South American Mission Society) and fulfilled her dream. She met her husband, Nelson Mejia, in Honduras and they married in 2002. Kara told of their ministry that began on the island of Roatan, just off the coast of Honduras, in 2006. "You know how you're excited for a new job and what could be ahead? Then you try to make an impact but see nothing happening? You doubt and you pray and pray, waiting for an answer?"
That’s exactly how she felt nine years ago when Bishop Lloyd Allen sent them to Roatan. "We spent seven years trying to build a new church. We had meetings and meetings — all with the same 20 people. We were trying to evangelize. We wanted to see people come to Jesus… It's so easy to doubt."
She reminded the congregation that everything happens in God's perfect time because he is in control.
They had tried to buy a piece of land on which to build a new church, but the woman selling it refused their $40,000 offer. She wanted $60,000. They asked her often, but the answer was always the same, so they moved on to another piece of land. In fact, when visiting New Brunswick three years ago, they showed congregations photos of the land they intended to buy.
But that was not to be. When they returned home, Nelson decided to call the original seller one more time. "This piece of land is meant to be yours," she said, and the negotiations began.