We have been very busy, so just getting a chance to write for Sunday now!!
Sunday was a very busy day- a roller coaster of emotions from highs to lows. We started the morning out with learning of Bob´s snoring habits. According to Steve he "has no rhythm". More to update later as he becomes more tired with each day. Will he be an animal, or get some rhythm with time? Will Steve get any sleep? Stay posted!
After breakfast we met with Dinora before departing for the orphanage. She spoke to the group about what to expect for the day. Children had arrived at the orphanage for various reasons- living on the streets or even being abused by their family. Entering the orphanage, we were quickly greeted by many children. The director shared with us many things. They are unable to properly care for the children that have special needs there because the staff simply is not trained to do so. They have 40 people on staff, all of whom work 12 hour shifts 7 days a week and care for 125 children! The strong hearts they have! With Pastor Juan and Dinora leading, we sang many songs with the children as Pastor Juan played his guitar. A man of many gifts- he sings so beautifully. After some thoughtful words shared by others, we colored with the children. Beanies and candy were handed out, and then we went to spend time with the infants in the nursery.
Next on the itinerary for the day was a joyful celebration with Pastor Juan´s community for a delicious lunch. It was great to see many familiar faces with those we have grown so close to over the years. Barry continued his "games" Terri as he posted a picture of her on the large "Welcome" board at the front of the church. It would be hours later when we returned for church service that she would notice it, and had to wait to do anything about it until service was over!
From lunch, we went to the teen INFHA house where we visited with 99 girls. We made the time we spent with them very joyful. After Pastor Juan once more led them in beautiful song, both he and Rolando shared their stories with the girls, spreading hope to them that despite their difficult pasts there is still reason to hope for the future. Many of the girls performed dance routines for us to song, and even teached us some moves! As a side, Barry can not dance- it may seem more like flailing! Upon his suggestion, Rolando and Colleen then led the group in the "chicken dance" and then taught the girls the dance. It was lots of fun, and much laughing was shared. We then created meaningful bracelets with the girls and gave them journals, toys, and candy. Before leaving we shared some personal time with the girls, praying for them and hearing of their stories. The young boys of the group had much fun as the girls were very fond of them!
After a short break for dinner, we ended the night with attending Pastor Juan´s service. He speaks with such conviction and spirit. He spoke of a woman whom prayed for bread because she had nothing to eat. Later, a few boys approached her and gave her bread. She said it was thanks to God she had received such, but the boys laughed at her and said they had given her the bread, not God. She did not believe so, however, saying God had answered her prayers, and in such it was proof to her that He existed. Each day we face an empty cup, and Pastor Juan urges us we must fill this cup with faith.
A very busy day, but a great start to the week here. Keep us in your prayers and thoughts as we begin the work week!
Colleen for the group