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Local church group returns home after being stranded in Guatemala

Church Group Home from Guatemala
Posted at 5:00 PM, Mar 24, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-24 18:00:05-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A group from Platte Woods United Methodist Church has returned to Kansas City after being temporarily stranded in Guatemala.

The relieved group of 19 flew into Kansas City International Airport on Sunday.

“I am home, oh my gosh, it’s never felt so good," Mackenzie Albright said.

The group left for Guatemala on March 12 on a mission trip. Soon after, the Guatemalan government closed its borders and airports due to COVID-19.

Mackenzie Albright couldn't believe it, telling 41 Action News, “I got stranded abroad due to a global pandemic."

Her parents were beginning to worry and are now glad to have her home.

“We don’t know all of the exact details, just that it happened and people were working very diligently behind the scenes and taking care of them," Shari Albright said.

Sen. Josh Hawley worked with the Secretary of State and many others to bring them home. Friday, Mackenzie Albright said the group learned a plane would be coming for them very soon.

“It was a complete mood shift. It was kind of weird. Coming home was good news and bad news because we had definitely like become really close and like a family and so we loved hanging out with each other," Mackenzie Albright said. "We knew that whenever we got home that we would be quarantined and we wouldn’t be able to leave our houses."

The group traveled from Guatemala City to Miami International Airport and then on to Kansas City.

After just days at home, Mackenzie Albright told 41 Action News the church is already planning the next mission trip back to Guatemala.

“We have a group chat and someone sent it in the group chat that we have 368.5 days until we go back," Mackenzie Albright said.

While Mackenzie Albright may be excited, her parents told 41 Action News they need some time to come around.

“Yes, Mardi sent an email this morning that he’s planning the trip for next year. That will be great when we can process that, maybe in a couple of months," Shari Albright said.

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