Living Waters for the World – Guatemala Water Project

Living Waters for the World was conceived by Wil Howie, a Presbyterian Church(USA) minister, who believed that the Church could literally bring life-saving, “living” water to people in need throughout the world.  Living Waters was officially recognized as a mission resource of the Presbyterian Church(USA) in 1993.

Through 2003, a small number of volunteers had installed 12 systems in Mexico, Haiti and Belize. Recognizing that it would not be able to significantly impact the growing water needs of the countries in which it was active, LWW developed a program to train and equip volunteer teams to install LWW water systems following the principle that, if you teach a person to fish, they can feed themselves for life.

The training program, Clean Water U, gives Living Waters for the World a way to dramatically lessen the world water crisis by educating teams of volunteers who,  in turn,  educate others about health and hygiene and teach them to install water systems that provide safe water to those who have none.

  • Contact the church office, look for Guatemala meeting announcements, or contact George Dent …

  • Participants are asked to finance their flight and accommodations which is normally around $1,000+

  • Usually late January to early February.  Most last 7-8 days.

  • More than half of Guatemala’s population lives below the poverty level, with nearly a quarter living on less than $2/day. It is a very diverse nation in terms of culture, terrain, and language. Guatemala boasts a large concentration of volcanoes (some currently active), which are partly responsible for its plethora of topographic formations and climates.  In addition to Spanish (which is spoken only by a portion of the population), Guatemala has more than 20 other dialects, spoken by members of tribes descended from its ancient Mayan civilization. In areas of the country where Mayan culture is still dominant, ancient customs, practices, and beliefs are guiding community influences, deeply connecting people to the earth and its sacred resources.

  • Most are located in the rural southwest part of the country, appx. one day’s drove from Guatemala City.  The map below displays past project with a  symbol!

  • Training is not required, but is recommended.  It helps participants understand the complete program and allows them to use their skills efficiently for the program.  CWU holds classes throughout the year encompassing the three aspects of of the water mission project:  installation, education, and survey ….. check their website at ???

  • Training for participants …..

  • Yes, supplies procurement, packing, prayers, and financial assistance …

  • add links to CWU, Living Waters, …..

  • Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of Mine, you did for Me.‘  Matthew 25:40

  • Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. John 7:38

  • 2000

    FPC In Guatemala

    In 2000 FPC Tupelo hosted Tapestry for our presbytery.  At that meeting, Reverend Will Howie of Oxford headed a section on world hunger. We learned that many in this world did not have access to clean drinking water and suffer from water-borne diseases; the children have nutritional deficiencies.   A group of Presbyterians were installing water purification systems in areas where clean water was needed.

  • 2002

    Clean Water U

    Around 2002, a training session was offered at First Presbyterian Church Oxford to teach interested folks about the water purification system.  About fifteen people attended the class.  The system operated on cycles that would purify about 300 gallons of water per hour.

  • 2004

    CWU First Classes

    In March 2004 Clean Water U had it’s first classes.  As of May 2015, CWU has hosted 1900 students representing almost every state and several countries.  Graduates of Clean Water U have installed over 700 clean water systems in the U.S. and worldwide.

  • Sep 2005

    FPC Initial Visit to Guatemala

    With Clean Water You up and running, in September, 2005, Barry and Holly Walker and George and Wanda Dent traveled to Coatepeque, Guatemala to visit the Jerusalem Presbyterian School with the intent of returning the following year to install a water system.

  • Nox 2006

    First Installation - Jerusalem Presbyterian School

    In November 2006 ten members from our church traveled to Guatemala and installed the system.  This installation was done, education accomplished and the system operational in three days.

  • Nov 2007

    La Blanca & Santa Fe

    While making the installation at the Jerusalem School in Coatepeque, the team was contacted by the Ebenezer Presbyterian Church of La Blanca and the Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church of Santa Fe.  Both churches requested that we come to their churches and survey the prospect of installing a water system. These churches were surveyed and we returned with a team of twelve in November 2007 and installed a water system in the Ebenezer Presbyterian Church in La Blanca and another water system in the Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe.  We returned to our first installation for maintenance and review.

  • Jan 2009

    Caballo Blanco and Flores Costa Cuca

    It became a scheduling issue to make the trip in November, so we next returned to Guatemala in January 2009 with a team of eleven and installed a water system for the Christ the King of Glory Presbyterian Church in Caballo Blanco and another system at Messiah Presbyterian Church in Flores Costa Cuca.  We reviewed our previous three systems.

  • Jan 2010

    Coatepeque and Tecun Uman

    Thirteen brave FPC Tupelo saints returned in 2010 and installed two additional water systems. One system was installed at the Jerusalem Presbyterian Church in Coatepeque and the other at the Horeb Presbyterian Church in Tecun Uman.  With each installation there are educational classes in health and hygiene. We reviewed our previous 5 systems.

  • Oct 2010

    Coatepeque Operators Conference

    In 2010 we also returned with a team of six in October and conducted an operators conference at the Jerusalem Church in Coatepeque. Attendance was excellent.  About 45 folks attended. It was our first operators conference.  In 2012 we conducted an operators conference at the Gethsemane Presbyterian Church in Las Palmas.

  • 2012

    Las Palmas Operators Conference

    In 2012 we conducted an operators conference at the Gethsemane Presbyterian Church in Las Palmas.

  • 2011

    Maintenance / Medical

    In 2011 we returned with a team of 16.  The water team of nine reviewed and did maintenance on our existing 7 systems. No new systems were installed. 2011 was a turning point in our missions as we added a medical team providing general medical assistance an eye exams and glasses!  There were seven members on the medical team.  The medical team held clinics at Messiah Presbyterian Church in Flores Costa Cuca and the Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe. 

  • 2012

    Columbia & Los Palmas

    Nineteen team members returned in 2012.  We installed two new systems with our water team of 12—one at the Arc Presbyterian Church in Columbia and another at Gethsemane Presbyterian Church in Los Palmas.  We reviewed our previous 7 systems.  Our medical and optometric teams totaled 7 and again held clinics at Messiah Presbyterian Church in Flores Costa Cuca and the Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe.

  • Jan 2013

    Santa Maria and Lily of the Valley

    In 2013 we returned with a team of 23.  Our water teams of 14 installed three water systems. One at the New Life Presbyterian Church in Santa Maria el Naranjo, another at the Presbyterian Temple at the Lilly of the Valley, and another at the Red Cross in Tecun Uman. We reviewed our previous 9 systems. We learned on review that the water system at El Arka, installed the previous year was a five star system.  They were doing all the maintenance, keeping maintenance records, production records.  El Arca had purchased a motorcycle to deliver water.  The operator had a cell phone to take orders.  They had customer lists and financial data.  They presented us with a written report and photographs of their system.  They volunteered to host an operators conference the next year.  Our medical and optometric teams totaled 9 and held clinics at Messiah Presbyterian Church in Flores Costa Cuca, Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe and at the Presbyterian Temple at the Lilly of the Valley.  The water system at the Red Cross Delegation in Tecun Uman was dedicated to Hank Boerner.  The water system at Lily of the Valley was donated by Dan Brasfield and dedicated to the honor of Bill Dickson and Bob Munson.

  • Jan 2014

    San Miguelito, Chimaltenango, and El Xab

    We returned in 2014 with a team of 25, our largest group.  Three more systems were born of this mission trip. One at the Official Rural School in el Xab, another at the school in Official Rural School in San Miguelito, and a third at the office of the Presbytery in Chimaltenango. We held an operators conference at The Ark Presbyterian Church in Colomba.  They had prepared a video of the operation and maintenance of the system and how they were doing things.  The conference was well attended and much appreciated by all. We reviewed our existing 12 systems and learned that the system at New Life was potentially another five star system!  They are at the same level as El Arca and New Life is the cleanest of all our partners!  Our medical team totaled 9 and held clinics at Messiah Presbyterian Church in Flores Costa Cuca, Good Samaritan Presbyterian Church in Santa Fe, Presbyterian Temple at the Lilly of the Valley and The Ark Presbyterian Church in Colomba.