Well this month we have been involved in a mission with our church to Puno – just across the boarder in Peru from the 13th to 18th. There was a mixed team of Bolivians and Brazilians – 19 in total. We went to stay with a Peruvian church who wanted us to help with a week long evangelism mission doing street drama and mime.
We arrived after a long 20 hour journey and were placed with a family from the church. They made us feel so welcome and were really interested in our families and life back in UK. We had daily meetings with the team and practiced the dramas. It was great to be part of a team who worked so co-operatively together and got involved 100%. We were responsible for putting together the program for each presentation. Each day we had been invited to give 3 presentations in different locations in the town, colleges, plaza (town squares) and in university departments. Ruth – who usually only gets to play the “goodies” in dramas was cast as a demon and shocked everyone with a dramatic transformation into a “Goth”. There was a mixture of comedy and powerful dramas set to music. Each time a large crowd would gather and stay to listen to the message / testimonies. On the last night we were overwhelmed by the response of the crowd who had been invited to come to the church and find out more about being a Christian.
On the Friday we had a free day with the team and arranged to go and visit the famous floating islands – called the Uros – near to Puno on Lake Titicaca. It was interesting to see the traditional way of life and how they build their reed houses and boats… although they now use recycled plastic bottles to aid flotation and solar panels to capture the sun’s energy…
The families showed us around and the lady who invited Ruth to her house dressed her up in the traditional Ayamara layered skirt and bowler hat.
We had a wonderful time in Puno… even though it was freezing cold at night and we could only take cold showers at 6.30 in the morning!!! So cold you could actually see your own breath in the bathroom… Brrrr.
The group going on the drama evangelism team to Puno decided to do some fund raising. We asked all the people from foreign countries – or had relatives in foreign countries to cook a typical dish to sell at the church.
I made scones!!! with English tea … with milk of course. Other people made tacos from Mexico, apple strudle from Austria, chocolate chip cookies from USA, something strange but spicy from Brazil, and boiled eggs with peanut sauce from Peru. But our scones were a great success and were the first to sell out.
The event was really popular and the funds allowed some students to come on the mission who otherwise would not be able to afford it.
To celebrate reaching half way in our marriage guidance course “Love and Respect” we decided to have a party with our group of couples. We have been reading one chapter of the book and meeting once every two weeks to discuss the questions. We have been “facilitating” the discussion in our limited Spanish. It has been really good and such a blessing to see these young couples developing and opening up to talk about things.
The party was great fun. We had a “bring and share” dinner – a new concept to most of our friends. Then we had a few games … the most hilarious being hugging balloon popping and blindfolded newspaper ripping!! Just don’t ask?!?!?
We also celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary this month. We usually take it in turns to organise a special restaurant or trip, but this year will be memorable as we spent the day looking for a dentist!!! Not very romantic! Ruth had a minor emergency and needed a tooth repaired… but finding a nice / clean / safe and qualified dentist in Sucre is not so easy.
Sadly we have both been a bit poorly in the past few weeks. The Bolivian bugs have caught up with us again and we have been feeling quite weak and drained. Both of us are on the mend now.
We have loads of things in the pipeline and are feeling really busy. We are looking forward to our trip to Puno with a group of students from the church and presenting dramas. We will also be involved with meeting a group of STEP missionaries from the UK and Ireland and helping them travel and get orientated, which we are looking forward to.