In December 2004, Geoff Partain, former St. Andrew’s parishioner and Vestry member, was introduced to the Manos de Dios Honduras Ministry through long-time family friend Patricia Perea, the Manos de Dios Honduras Ministry Chair of The Episcopal Diocese of West Texas.
Geoff joined the Manos de Dios team and visited Honduras as part of the annual mission trip in January 2005. While there, Geoff helping with construction projects that included an eye clinic, soccer program, baking classes, and a music program.
Realizing that the work the Manos de Dios team was doing was something that he wanted to be a part of on a continuing basis, Geoff proposed to The Rev. Joseph William Frazier that St. Andrew’s take part in supporting the ministry. Henry Steinkamp was also on the Vestry and was interested in the mission. Henry suggested that Jim Kasterko also go on one of the mission trips to Honduras given Jim’s carpentry skills.
Jim, Henry and Geoff went to Honduras as part of the first official St. Andrew’s contingent in 2006. St. Andrew’s donated 20 or 30 backpacks for the Honduran students along with some clothing that same year. When they got back, Jim made the presentation to the congregation about the work being done in Honduras by Manos de Dios.
In 2007, Jim Kasterko, Michael Jelf, and Geoff Partain went to Honduras. Shortly after this second trip, Geoff relocated to Japan, at which time Jim took over the project, visiting Honduras every year through 2011.
St. Andrew’s has supported the Manos de Dios Mission Scholarship Program since 2006. This program awards scholarships to deserving students who cannot afford to go to school beyond the government funded 6th grade.
This is an ongoing ministry and donations can be made in any amount throughout the year. The funds collected are strictly by donation and are not included in the St. Andrew’s annual budget. Donations may be placed in the collection plate with a notation earmarking them for the Honduras Mission.
Jim coordinated the scholarship program for St. Andrew’s with Patricia Perea from St. Francis by-the-Lake Episcopal Church in Texas. She continues to express her gratitude for our involvement in this mission.
Participation in the missions to Honduras:
2005 – Geoff Partain
2006 – Geoff Partain, Henry Steinkamp, Jim Kasterko
2007 – Geoff Partain, Michael Jelf, Jim Kasterko
2008 – Jim Kasterko
2009 – Jim Kasterko
2011 – Jim Kasterko
In 2015, St. Andrew’s renamed the Honduras Mission Fund in honor of Jim Kasterko who passed away September 6, 2014.