Guest written by our niece Jeanette and her daughter Lori.
Today we got an early start for our 8 a.m. departure for Canoas with Pastor Ramiro, Sandra, Pastor Rey, LuLu, and their children. Canoas is a remote mountain village that has no running water and no electricity. Getting there was truly an adventure. Eight miles of rough dirt road brought us spectacular mountain views, resting donkeys, and fallen trees blocking the road. Pastor Ramiro helped us continue onward by getting out of the ministry suburban to drag the tree off the road. Recent rains caused us to get stuck…but only once!
We arrived to happy residents, who promptly showed us to two families who had prepared a tasty meal of beans, rice, and 100% handmade tortillas. You can see the molcajete in one of the photos. This is used for grinding down the corn to make the tortillas. Since these families are gracious enough to feed us, they received the Blessing Bags I wrote about in yesterday’s post. Our group was divided by two for the meal, so while we awaited everyone to finish eating we played a friendly game of catch with the children of the village.
Next, we held our worship service in the one-room church that was constructed of wood slats. The inside walls are lined with clear plastic to reduce the wind chill through the openings between the boards. Pastor Ramiro preached a moving sermon complete with relevant funny stories that brought plenty of smiles and laughter. LuLu and Sandra lead us all in joyful songs. The most touching part of the service was when Pastor Ramiro asked if anyone would like to receive Christ as their Savior and all of the children came forward! Each child who could read was given a new Spanish language bible as a gift for receiving Jesus.
Following the conclusion of the services, we unloaded the rack on top of the suburban. We had four full totes of clothing for the residents of Canoas. Each person that attended was able to take clothing that they needed for men, women, girls, and boys. We also gave out several pairs of reading glasses. The children were given gift bags filled with toys, snacks, and shampoo/soap. As you can see from the photos, they were very excited about their gifts.
I can say with all certainty that today was one of the most spiritually fulfilling days that I have ever experienced. These are humble, happy people that find joy in the Word and give the glory to God…Gloria a Dios. Let us all remember to give the glory to God.
P.S. I would also like to mention that Pastor Ramiro’s wife has a remarkable talent for embroidery and crochet. I had the pleasure of seeing her work at her house today. This is a dying art and she is truly a master of her craft. Please check out our photos to see the purses and kitchen towels that she handmade.