Friday, January 4, 2013

CHRISTMAS!!!!


 
And some of the other food...overflow to the kitchen!

Yummy snacks for the Christmas party!!!


Yay for Christmas! I was in the States the last two Christmas', so this was only my second Christmas in Peru. The first year I was here, I spent Christmas in Iquitos, and this year I was here in Arequipa. On December 17, I had a party at my little apartment, with 15 or 16 people. It was those who were still in Peru from the USA and the Peruvians who work in the office. We had a fun time together, sharing traditional North American snacks, including, but not limited to, homemade hard candy, carmal popcorn, and lots of spiced and candied nuts! We had a great time sharing the Christmas story with each other.






My cousin, Beth, is a missionary in Venezuela with Campus Crusade for Christ. She and two of her co-workers came to Arequipa to visit over Christmas and for the additional reason of renewing their visas for Venezuela. Chelsea and Lindsay went to Cusco and Machu Pichu for a few days and Beth and I had some time together to do things we wanted to do. We went to the Mirador in Sanchaca one day. The "Venezuelans"  were here for two weeks, and we had a good time visiting with one another. We went on the local bus tour of Arequipa and went down town several times to the Plaza de Armas and surrounding area. It was a blessing to have family here for Christmas!









And a Christmas Miracle...
fresh milk...pasturized and homaginized!!!!
Christmas Dinner - Taco Salad with all the fixin's!
 


November With My Dad

Well, we had a great time in Pucallpa! I have many more pictures I was trying to upload, but it wasn't working for me (not sure why), so here are some of the many. The team arrived in Pucallpa on the 8th of November, and then we headed out to Curimaná to get started on the new church there. Pastor Dario came and met the group at the airport, and though the team was small, we were able to accomplish much. Also, this was the first time that we had a good group of hermanos from the church we were building help with the construction. It was great to work side by side with the brothers and sisters of the church!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 


Everyone was ready to get started on the first day! We started out with a prayer dedicating the area-building site to God!
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Daniel is always the joker, and even with gloves on, he still has to give a thumbs up!
 
 






On the first Sunday we were there, we had a medical visit with the owner of our hospedaje. I translated for the doctor.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Daniel and I had a meeting of the minds before church service. :-)






Dad, trying to understand some of the service on Sunday morning.
  
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I know, it looks like I am not doing anything, but holding rebar is really important!!!
 











It may be styrofoam blocks, but we still have to make concrete to hold it together.
Then we started using the 20 kg bags of lyme to hold the blocks in place while we worked on other sections of the walls.









We had three and a half days of medical clinics in Curimaná, and there was no lack of patients.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
The second Sunday we were there, we went to Cambio Noventa for service. We took 7 mototaxis. Honestly, I didn't think the ride was too bad...it wasn't raining, it wasn't too hot, and there were only a few bumps...so I thought! I was informed otherwise! :-)
 





This little sweetie is only three, and usually three year olds in Peru won't go to someone who isn't their family. However, as I talked to her aunt, she informed me that this little girl lives with her because her mother doesn't care for her. She is starving for attention. She sat on my lap for a good hour and a half and talked with me about all the little girl things happening in her life. So precious!!!
 
 
 
 
 
 
That evening, we had the dedication service at the new chapel. Everyone was happy to see the finished product, and the church was packed with over 200 people. The ladies of the church made chicherone de chancho...fried pork!!! It was a lovely service!





 
 
After the group left at the airport, dad and I visited with Pastor Dario and family for the day, then we went on our own personal adventure, including an 18 hour bus ride. Hopefully, I can get more pictures on here soon, but this gives a pretty good overview.







Thanks for your continued prayers as the work here in Peru continues!
























Monday, October 15, 2012

Phone for Ransom?!?!? (a blog that didn't get posted in July 2011)

It was a Friday morning. We were on our way to visit an elderly gentleman and maybe help his daughters decide what was best for him. He is bed fast, and the daughter who is the primary care giver is very sick herself, and can't lift him to change his clothes anymore. We visited with them and talked about different options. One option is actually a nursing home here in the area that has a good reputation. It is very rare to find a nursing home in Peru, so this could be a real blessing.

Anyway, after we were done visiting and praying with the family, we went back to Yarina for more visits there. We were almost to Yarina when I realized that my cell phone had fallen out of my pocket some where along the bumpy ride to Yarina. Unfortunately, I was sitting on the outside of the motocar, and there was a big gap between the seat and the side of the moto. So, I lost my phone.

We had the moto driver turn around and we went back to search along the road. I knew about where I had lost it, but we didn't see it there anywhere. So we went on to Yarina, had our visits there and then went back to the house. The good thing was, I had just bought S/. 15 of credit on my phone, so the guy who found the phone, didn't want to turn it off. Nancy called for me, and he answered. She told him that she wanted the phone back because it had all the contacts in it; Would he please bring it to the church? He said he would, but that we needed to pay him S/. 50 because he had bought it from another guy who actually found it. We said no problem. He was suppose to be there in 15 minutes. When he didn't come, we called again. He then said no, he didn't want to bring the phone to us because he was afraid that we would have police there to arrest him. We told him that we were missionaries, and I knew where I lost the phone, and knew that it hadn't been stolen, so I wasn't going to have the police there waiting. He asked us if we could come there to La Perla at the bridge (where I lost the phone) and get it. We said yes, but by this time it was 10:30 PM, so Nancy and I took Sammy with us. We told the guy that we were bringing our brother with us. So we got a taxi and went the 15 minutes to Yarina, to La Perla, and when we got to the bridge, the place was dark. As Nancy and I walked out onto the bridge, I felt like someone making a ransom drop. When we were about half way across the bridge, someone started walking from the other side, flashing a cell phone back and forth. He said, "Are you here for the phone?" We said, "Yes." He said, "All the contacts and pictures are there. Don't worry...Nothing is deleted." We gave him the S/. 50. End of story, right?

Wrong!!! He began asking us about why we lived in Pucallpa. We told him we were missionaries with the Church of the Nazarene, and that we were starting churches in Pucallpa. He had a lot of questions about the church and when services were. We haven't seen him yet, but we are hoping to see him at one of our services.

From the Glorious Natural Jungle of Iquitos to the "COLD" Urban Jungle of Arequipa
















I was able to spend some time in Iquitos on a project for 2 1/2 weeks in September. It was nice to get to see lots of my friends from Iquitos (Pastor Abiatar, Mama Magna, Chino, Hermana Betti, Moises, Leyla, Pastor Antonio, Malena, and Jim, Kati, and many more), as well as help build a new church in Tamshiyacu, a small town about an hour south, but up river, from Iquitos. There were days filled with construction and impact events. It was hot (I love it!!!) and humid, but the team kept plugging along. We ended the two weeks with a service in the new church building on Sunday.
So, have been back in Arequipa for three weeks now, and we just finished another Short Term Project here. (Crazy...it started 5 days after the Iquitos project finished!) We did several days of construction on a church that is going to be shipped to Pucallpa later, and we did lots of impact projects to get the word out about the Church of the Nazarene here in Arequipa.
It is the middle/end of spring here in Arequipa, Praise the Lord! I can tell a difference because in winter, I sleep with 5 blankets, and at this time, I only want 3! So glad it is getting warmer!!!! (Although, I still stand by the fact that Arequipa is COLD!)






Anyway, yesterday I went to Chachani for regular service. They were finishing up the consolidation discipleship book that I have probably read a hundred times, if not more. The last lesson is on the Family of God. I was so happy to be able to share with them about how it is great to feel a connection with people you have never met, simply because you are all part of the family of God. I am pretty sure I could go just about anywhere in the world and find a "brother" or "sister" because I am a part of this family. Even though I am a long way away from my family in West Virginia, I still have family here in Peru (Arequipa, Iquitos, Pucallpa, Chiclayo, Tarapoto, Campañia, Lima, and Bagua), in Paraguay (Asuncion), in Belize (San Ignacio, Belmopan, and Belize City), and tons of places in the United States! And those are just the ones I know!!! Praise the Lord for this extended family!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Busy, Busy, Busy (In a good way!)

So, the last blog I posted was clear back after the Puerto Maldonado Project. Well, since then, we have been very busy! In June, we had a project in Cusco, in July, here in Arequipa, and this month, I had the privelege to go to Paraguay for the project there in Asuncion. So, here is an update and some pictures from these projects.
**************************************






CUSCO - In Cusco, we had lots of Impact projects, as well as the construction of two chapels, three days of medical clinics, and and three Jesus Film showings. For the impact days, we had kids festivals and one of the highlights was going to a local orphanage. We also went to a local hospital. One group went to a local women's prison.

This is our Peruvian construction man, Cuarto. He is the strongest little man in the whole world!!! He is from Iquitos, but works in Arequipa and with our short term construction projects.






At two of the medical clinics, I made reading glasses to distribute. I think, in the end, I made about 25 pair, plus we had around 80 pair donated. It is amazing to see the people when they receive a pair of reading glasses. They are so appreciative and happy. We were even able to help some children who were far sighted.

I went with Cuarto, Mark, and Tom, on the short termer's day off, to help get the land ready where we were to move the second chapel. The two chapels they were building were being built in the same location, and the second one had to be moved to to another town. The property had lots of flower bushes, ROCKS, and old brush. So we had a day of cleaning...I must admit, I took more pictures than digging.
At the end of the trip, we went sight seeing. I was trying to hold Jesus' hand.
 
 *********************************************
AREQUIPA - there was impact projects, a construction and reconstruction of chapels, and Jesus Film showings in this project. And some of my WV buds got to come!!! Ray, on the far right is from Fairmont area, but is a 40/40 here in Arequipa.

We were getting some ofthe supplies ready for skits. No worries, it was a toy gun that was falling apart, and empty beer bottles for the skit.
On Saturday night, we had a "Battle of the Bands". I stayed close to the back of the park where it wasn't quite so loud. Tom, Robin, and Kelly Watters joined me there for a while.


We went to out to one of the outlying communities for a kids festival and Jesus Film showing.


 I really don't wear the same clothes everyday, I just don't have a lot of sweatshirts, so it looks that way. We went to some schools. We usually do salvation bracelets and some games with the kids. These are the smaller kids who needed lots of help with the salvation bracelets.

One evening, we had a workshop for parents, so I played games with the children who came with their parents. We played "Follow the Leader" for quite a while, and then some "Duck, Duck, Goose".



This is Junior and Tani (Nataniel). They make all the blocks for the foam builds. A team came down in May, while I was in Puerto Maldonado, and tought them how to make the blocks. Since they started in May, they have made over 1,050 blocks. It takes about 25 minutes to complete one block, and they average about 15 - 17 blocks per day.



In Chachani, we had the dedication service for the chapel that was constructed there. Chachani is the name of the moutain that the community is right at the foot of. It gets very cold there at night.





 After the dedication service, we gave out clothing that had been donated from the United States. These young ladies are from the Alto Libertad church, which is the mother church for the Chachani congregation.
Some of the hermanas (sisters) from the church were there to help get things ready for the dedication. Jesica is the one kneeling. The church is on the back of her property. On the left is her sister, her mother, Gladis, who works here in our office, and myself.
*******************************************
PARAGUAY - In Paraguay, we did all impact projects. I don't know why I never take pictures of these. I guess because I am always busy and forget. We did lots of school visits, and hospital visit, kid's festivals in the parks, a cookout, showed some movies in the plazas, and had some youth events. 
On the day off, Orfa, Gladis and I found a train museum close to a plaza downtown. It wasn't the main plaza, but, unknown to us, it was only 3 or 4 blocks from the main plaza.




 At the train museum, there were two train cars and an engine that you could go in. We ha fun taking pictures of all the different rooms and things inside...even the bar!





















 We stopped to eat lunch at McDonald's, and had to get our picture with Ronald, who happened to be waiting for us on the bench outside! And infront of the Municipalidad, we caught up with the founder! What a lucky day!















On the tour day, we went to Caacupé, which is the center of the Catholic religion in Paraguay. We were able to go inside the cathedral, and up on the mirador that is at the dome of the roof. Inside, the stained glass windows were beautiful.





 At the top of the mirador, there was a nice breeze blowing and the temperature was perfect. On the way back to Asuncion, we stopped at the largest lake in Paraguay.












 The final day in Asuncion, we were able to go downtown again. To the left is a very interesting building that has part of the old building left there and the new building built around it. Above is the Presidential Palace.

It was so nice to get to visit with the Foster's and the Williams'. I enjoyed being able to catch up with Isa and Landon and Teddy and Reese. I was also glad to finally put some faces with the names of the 40/40s there. We had a great time ministering to the people of Paraguay. I must say, however, that I was glad to return to Peru after my time in Paraguay. It is good to be home and working on the next project that will take us to Iquitos in September. Yay for the jungle!!!!


 

Universal Translator