If there are any of you out there still reading this, here is what's been going on around here. Probably the reasons why I've been a terrible blogger! Oh well!
1. Visit to the "new" chacara.
Our church has always helped support a drug rehab center outside of the city. It is called the Youth Center for Recuperation. But we just call it the "chacara" which means little farm. This year we had made plans to worship with them in December and take them a Christmas gift. The week before we had planned to go out there, the chacara was robbed. This is the second time that this has happened. The chacara location was once very removed from communities and population. But things are growing and now it is very near to several neighborhoods and commercial areas. As always, drugs continues to be a big problem in these areas, and the chacara, unprotected by fences or walls, is an easy target. Fortunately, the chacara has another location - this one very far removed from the city. So, the week of our visit, the director of the chacara decided to move everyone out to the other location.
So on our Sunday morning visit, we loaded up several cars and made our way by caravan out to the new place. It was beautiful out there. But the living conditions are VERY rustic. There is a lot of work to be done.
We had our worship with them - and it was beautiful. Matt, our teammate, gave a great lesson. Then we shared communion together. During communion we sang some songs that talked about how we are all ONE and we are a family. It was very humbling and moving to sing with these guys who have gone through so much and are trying to get back on track. Who knows what has happened to each of them in their lives, but yet they are redeemed by Christ's sacrifice - just like I am. I'm pretty sure that everyone there that day shed some tears. I shed a lot!
It was an awesome worship time. We loved visiting with the guys, eating lunch with them, and seeing all the many opportunities that God has given us to help them out.
2. Our Second Bazaar selling cookies.
We participated in the Christmas Bazaar at Sogipa, our club (like a YMCA), the second weekend of December. We had lots of fun, again made new friends, and sold lots of cookies! We got lots of ideas for the future. All in all the start to the cookie business went really well. We made enough money to help out with Bronwyn's return plane trip back to the US in January. We thought we had made half the amount - until we found out the price of the tickets. *gulp* Oh well, more incentive to get after those cookie sales for next year!
I'll continue catching up tomorrow... Still to come - Bronwyn got home for Christmas, Trip to Gramado, Our Annual Christmas Party, Garrett's graduation from the 8th grade, Christmas crafts and baking, and Ansley's High School graduation which is tonight!