Arrived in Panama City around 7am, left for Houston around 9:45. Arrived in Houston, cleared immigration, then spent 3 hours stuck in the baggage claim area before customs because of a very bad thunderstorm. Proceeded to freak out a little and get into survival mode. Eventually, everyone made it through and I started freaking out about how I was going to get to Notre Dame.
When I say goodbye to my teammates, hugging each one turn-by-turn, I already feel some heartache of perfect times over. When I arrive at my gate, C11, and sit down at an iPad-equipped high table, it hits me like thunder.
“I am leaving paradise.” Continue reading
Today was our ‘fun’ day! We went to El Patio around 9am to get salteñas. It was a good time of fellowship, exchanging some gifts, talking. Then, we broke off into little groups to go shopping, sightsee, etc. I went with Carmen, Tina, Silas, Josue, and Marco to shop, then look at Casa de Liberdad Bolivia’s equivalent of Independence Hall. Then we looked at a store/’museum’ featuring real hand-made textiles. Women sit at a special loom and can spend 6 months making an 18″x12″ piece, creating shapes and using colors to tell stories. I ended up buying a beautiful poncho made on a different electric-powered loom from alpaca fur. If you see me wearing it, now you know the story 😉 Continue reading
A real day of mixed emotions.
We arrived at Gracia Divina around 9:30am and found a line of 10-or-so people waiting for an eyeglass clinic. Which was an issue, since we hadn’t planned on clinic-ing. While we waited for Pastor Fernando to arrive and make a decision, we organized materials and prayed together: for the last day of ministry, for wisdom for Pastor, etc. Eventually, we decided to have Silas and Marco stay for the morning to fit glasses to the people already in line, while PG, Tina, Pastor Fernando, and I went out to do discipleship with new believers. Continue reading
Greetings from the Santa Cruz airport!
Today was full and bursting with fun, happiness, goodbyes, and sadness. It was a more relaxed day—the morning was salteñas at El Patio again (for breakfast!), then a trip to a different high place where we could see all of Sucre. It was a different vantage point from Sunday, and this time we had translator Esteban point out where in the city each of us had served—where each church was. We took lots of group pictures, then had a time of prayer together for Sucre and its people and all the churches we’re leaving behind. Continue reading
Today was our last day of ministry! The week has gone by so fast…
We woke up and ate/met like usual. The entire morning at Pastor Fernando’s church was devoted to discipleship training—that is, training the nationals to disciple the new believers after PG and I leave.
We explained the concept of ‘Yellow’ ‘Stories of Hope’ (for when a person doesn’t want to put their trust in Jesus just yet but is interested) and the ‘Green’ ‘Discipleship Stories’ (for new believers to start growing in their faith). PG made an excellent analogy—if a newborn baby is left by itself with no one taking care of it, it’ll get sick and probably die. So new believers need to be visited, discipled, taken care of. Similarly it isn’t enough to hand a new believer a Bible and say, “Read this!” That’s like giving a newborn a 12-oz steak. They can’t digest it. Continue reading