PLATTE WOODS, MO (KCTV) -- A local church group has been stranded after traveling to Guatemala for missionary work.
However, despite the coronavirus delaying their travel it has not darkened their spirits.
Fourteen teenagers and five adults from the Platte Woods United Methodist Church were supposed to be back from their missionary trip in Guatemala on Friday but unfortunately they’re stuck because of the coronavirus.
For Amy Schemenaur, FaceTime is the only way she can see her two kids Wade and Meg.
“We have such a special heart for Guatemala,” she said. “It’s such an absolutely wonderful place, but we want our kids home.”
Her kids are among those who went on a church missionary trip to Guatemala last week to lend a helping hand. The trip was even more special for Wade and Meg, though.
“Exciting because we were like born here, so like I think it was just a really good opportunity to see the different perspectives of how people live there,” Meg explained.
Back in 2003 and 2004, Amy adopted Meg and Wade from Guatemala,
“I like it,” Wade said. “It’s amazing. But, I do miss the Kansas City weather and home.”
They and the rest of the group are greatly missed back home. That’s why the church is doing everything they can to get them back.
At the time the kids left, there were no known cases of COVID-19 in Guatemala,
“It’s a different world now,” Schemenaur said. “It’s just very different, and the Coronavirus just took intensity like no one could have expected.”
Guatemala does now active coronavirus cases, including at least one death.
On Monday, the group tried to get a flight home early. However, that same day, the Guatemalan government announced the closure of their borders and the airport for 15 days.
“Everyone here has done the best of what we have and everyone’s spirits have stayed up,” Wade said.
Back in Kansas City, parents and church members have been contacting a number of state politicians for help. Missouri State Senator Josh Hawley tweeted today in part, “We have spoken with a major airline that may be able to help stranded Missourians in Guatemala, but we need State Dept’s approval and coordination.”
In the meantime, the group said they’ll use the extra time to continue bonding.
“We have meals together still with everyone to try and incorporate everyone being together,” Wade said.