Well, we passed through our last weekend of ministry in Chimal and are now preparing for continued travel. Here's a little summary of the weekend:
-- Saturday, we were picked up by Mardoqueo around 8:45, then stopped at the market for a couple things. Arriving at the house, Carmen made breakfast for us, and we visited a little. Then it was kitchen adventure time!
Shorr wanted to make Chocolate Zucchini Bread, so we started with that. Carmen looked on, helped, and asked questions about it, making notes so that she could make the bread again after we were gone. Just before we started baking it, company showed up! The pastor and his wife, along with Katharina, Kristen, and their host parents and baby came to take a look at the farm. Kristen and Katharina's hosts are getting a religious wedding (they already had a civil service)and are hosting it at the chicken farm where Mardoqueo works and lives. We visited with them, made them pina coladas (without alcohol), let them taste the bread, and played with the little girl. We also got to see an indigenous women hand weaving for a little while.
Back to the kitchen, we made lunch (Guatemalanized version of Chow Mein) and then most of the group went to a double wedding. Evidently our church is having a rash of people who want to have a religious ceremony, since they became Christians after getting married. I stayed back to rest and write an essay... yeah... you can give me a hard time about that. =)
The family arrived back from the wedding and we watched a movie... I can't remember the name... it was in English, with subtitles in Spanish which suited all of us quite well. You can learn new vocabulary that way. =) Then, Shorr taught the older guys, Josue and Luis, how to play Dutch Blitz while I whipped up a batch of chocolate chip cookies. Carmen looked on and took notes, and I asked her questions about different things in the kitchen. When I had about 2 dozen cookies baked, I let the group know that they were available for consumption... well, they disappeared quickly enough! It was a good thing I made a lot more cookies after that; by the rate at which they disappeared, I'd venture to guess that they were appreciated.
After the cookies were done, I joined in Dutch Blitz. We played and then visited until close to midnight. Man, I enjoy that family!
-- Sunday. Breakfast. Church. Ninos con Bendicion. Celebration. Baby shower. Guatemala City.
Going through this quickly: we ate breakfast, went to church, had some cool kids perform marimba and traditional dances for us, ate lunch with our host families and the kids at the church, went to a baby shower briefly, and went to Guatemala City for dinner.
To elaborate a little on some things: Ninos con Bendicion is a group from San Antonia Aguas Calientes. Through sponsorship and giving presentations on Guatemalan music and culture (marimba and dances), the kids raise money for their education and their families. We met the group at a viewpoint on the way to Quetzaltenango last weekend and Mardoqueo invited them to come and perform at the church.
For the celebration, we had a dish that is traditional from San Martin... a town near Chimal. We got to visit with our host families, the worship team, and the kids. And it was fun. =)
Baby shower: well, the baby hadn't been born, so we got to see what a pregant Guatemalan woman looks like. ~laughs~ Okay, it's not all that different. We listened to a sermonette by the pastor's wife on training children and discipline, played some games (I was voluntold to do a word scramble in Spanish... didn't manage that one), and then crept out one by one, as we had to leave the party early in order to beat the traffic to Guatemala City.
Guatemala City: we asked our host family at breakfast Sunday whether we could buy them dinner that night. Well, they agreed... and then asked if we wanted to go to Guatemala City for dinner! And so we agreed. We drove there, looked around at the old building and the massive central park, and then went to a brand new mall. As Mardoqueo told me, the mall is 2 years old, and was built for the really rich people in Guatemala. Huh, couldn't tell by looking. [/sarcasm] We wandered around a little, then went to the food court and ordered pizza. Yup, you bet. We went all the way to Guatemala City for pizza! It was good pizza though, if that's worth anything. =)
After dinner, we dropped off some leftover pizza for Luis who was working a 31 hour shift at the hospital. Then we dropped off Mardoqueo the younger, Josue, and Anna (their cousin) at their house. And so, back to Chimal to sleep and recover.
-- Monday. We ate breafast, then sat at the table visiting for another hour and a half. It was a lot of fun. I translated a lot though, which wears me out. =) Then, off to the seminary for debrief!
And so went the weekend. This is probably my last update until April. Looking ahead, here's what we're doing:
- Thursday we leave for Finca La Loma, where we will have a spiritual retreat.
- Sunday (the 14th) we take off for El Salvador, arriving in San Salvador sometime in the afternoon.
- Tuesday (the 16th) we leave San Salvador for our practicum location: Victoria Cabannas... it's near the border of Honduras.
- Friday (the 26th) we leave our ministry site for San Salvador.
- Sunday (the 28th) we leave San Salvador for Panajachel, Guatemala.
- Thursday (April 1st) we return from Panajachel to GBS.
- Sunday (April 4th, Easter Sunday) we return to Canada!
Please pray for us: health, wisdom, endurance, team unity, safety, and that God would use our ministry to reach people for His kingdom.