Saturday, June 13, 2009

This and That

Los Encuentros
There are a lot of villages up in the mountains around Cubulco. Some are quite small and I suppose can hardly be called a village! Los Encuentros is one such village. Three brothers and their families who live close together on a mountainside, recently approached Ken about getting a teacher for their community. Their children normally had to hike a few kilometres to the nearest school, however, during the rainy months of the year the size of a large river between them and the school makes the trip impossible. Ken hired this young man to teach the kids! He spends four days of the week there.

The trip to the village is beautiful, but rugged. After an hour in the car, it is a two hour hike, crossing several rivers. The river nearest to the village is the largest and the people have built a raft out of gourds to ferry people across. Wilf choose to swim :)

At first, the school met in one of the houses. When the rains came, members of Los Encuentros, as well as members of some of the other churches, put together their money and built this building. The government donated some desks, and they were all set!
(keep in mind that all the desks, wood, sheet metal etc. had to be carried the two hours to the village!)

The students!
Cheese Making
A few days ago, Wilf and I went over to Odilia's house (a lady in our church) to make mountain cheese. Mountain cheese is really delicious with tortillas! Wilf and I are hoping to buy some of the enzyme tablets needed to make it and try our hand at it when we get home!
In the picture above, Wilf and Odilia are warming the cheese with their hands to consolidate it.

Squeezing out the whey.

Kneading in the salt! Wilf is now an expert :)

Ryan came along and played with Odilia's granddaughter.
Odilia and her family are fairly well off (compared to most people here). However, her husband drinks a lot and her children don't show much interest in church.
Centro de Educacion

Another project Ken started is the after-school Bible program-or Centro de Educacion, as it is called here. Our kids have been going three three days a week since the beginning of June. They really loved it! For three hours, they would do singing, crafts, and games.
Unfortunately, all schools and educational programs have been cancelled until July 1st becuase of the influenza pandemic! We are so disappointed. It means that our last two weeks here will be pretty quiet!

Kristen's friend from school also came to the Bible program!

Ken hired three teachers to run the program. Vilma (pictured above with Kris) is the "lady in charge"...I'm not sure what her official title is :)

We were very sad that the schools were cancelled because it meant the kids had no playmates for the next two weeks! So far though, Kris's friends have been dropping by almost every day and a large group of Nate's classmates stopped by yesterday as well. I suspect our trampoline is a BIG draw....

Although she isn't fluent, Kris manages to get by quite well with these girls! Nate and Brad rarely speak Spanish and seem to know only words used during a soccer game! :) We suspect they know more than they let on!
Pool time
The pool is very warm right now and we make it over there almost every afternoon to cool off before dinner. The kids can stay in for hours! It is great to see them improving so much.
Ryan loves his waterwings and I love to watch him swim!
Above he is preparing for a dive....
And away he goes!

And so the days fill up and pass by! We are thankful to the Lord as well for the class Wilf taught the obreros over the past three days. It was a really great opportunity to talk about the future of their churches and their plans to continue on and further their work. Wilf has plans to visit all the aldeas once more in the next two weeks and the kids and I plan to finish up our school!
Please continue to pray for our family and the work here!


Lego Mom said...

Love your pictures! I love the pictures of Wilf making cheese - I can see him enjoying talking with the lady and just being part of their lives and encouraging them. Its so neat to see what is going on in your life, as well as the life of the church, even though we are so far away! We look forward to seeing you again real soon!! :)

Maria said...

Such interesting pictures again! God has given you so many fascinating experiences there this year. We pray for His blessing on your last two weeks there....

Rich and Cher said...

Yes - talk about a wealth of experiences! I also just love seeing the work of ministry in its many different forms - I love how the Lord uses you in leadership in His church there and us in His church here. Very different settings and ways of doing things, but the same body of Christ. I can't wait to talk to you face to face, Sharon!

Rich and Cher said...

And Wilf, too - of course! I"m sorry - I generally direct these comments to Sharon, but Wilf - we haven't forgotten you and we can't wait to talk to you either :)

Sharon said...

Thanks for another fascinating peek into your life in Guatemala, Sharon, and the lives of some of the people there! Wow, we are so privileged here & life is so easy for us! We need eye-openers -- may God continue to remind us! And may He richly bless these last couple weeks till we see you again...

Mark and Christy said...

Interesting pics--I can't believe they made that raft out of gourds! Do you have some new interesting recipes that you will be using when you get back? We'll have to get together (somehow?) for a Guatemalan meal sometime (: