Mandiokas, Busrides, & Youth Meeting

This morning we went to the pastoral meeting. There were 7 of us present, the Missionary, his secretary, David, Christian, Pastor Freddy the praise leader, Emiliano the school director, Shin & Annie. They went over events coming up, including a youth retreat. We drank Mate milk tea for the first time. It was excellent. Almost like sweetened, Korean, walnut tea.

After that we had some disgusting confrontations with dying cockroaches due to the little black boxes we placed around the house. Apparently, it doesn’t destroy the insects right away but it makes them go crazy. They start coming out in bright daylight and crawling in circles before eventually overturning and dying. One had already died under the sink and attracted a frenzy of ants in just a day.

I wanted to wash some dishes to offer snacks to our tutor, Maru, but the kitchen grossed me out. But, she arrived so I was a little disoriented for the most part. The main topic of study today was food which was appropriately followed up with a trip to downtown Villa Elisa for lunch. You walk through the self-serve buffet and then pay per kilo. Pasta is a main staple here!

We ate mandioka for the first time! Its the flavorless potato-esque root that is used to make mate tea. It was good!!

Over lunch we talked with Maru. She had attended this missionary school, graduated and finished college. She returned and became a teacher at the Colegio Cerritos. So this school had a great impact on her life. She accepted Christ during a church youth retreat and is a faithful believer. While we were walking into the food court there were people selling illegal movies on the street. I asked her what she thinks of illegal movies and she said without hesitation that she doesn’t buy illegal movies or music. I was really impacted by her integrity.

After lunch we went to the market to buy some roach spray. The little black box is too passive. Every time we step out of the house and return, we conduct a roach clearance with the broom pan. Right outside the front door, in the soil we have a roach cemetery.

On the way back Maru showed us how to ride the bus back by ourselves. It’s a short distance, but we were nervous. We stood near the bus exit anxiously looking out for the entrance to the mission center. Luckily we got back safely. Here are pictures of the ticket stubs.

Then it was siesta so we went to the school office to get internet. One of the first things Shin set out to do upon arrival was get wireless internet going. But the buildings are all made of brick so wireless internet isn’t possible from school to our home or the missionary’s home. So, most of these entries will be posted up the following day.

We returned home and read a chapter of a spiritual book together called “Under Cover”. Then we napped. Around 4:30pm we walked over to the missionary’s house to practice a duet on violin & piano. This Sunday we’re going to offer a song during service. I’m using Arah’s ¾ size violin and Shin will play the keyboard. It’s amazing how the skills God gave us can be used this way.

For dinner we had Jjam Bbong with the family and then attended the youth program at Marangatu Church. It was the first service we attended after arriving so we were excited to see the youth program.

It started with an intro by two student MC’s. Then there was a slideshow presentation advertising the youth retreat. The feel of the video was so familiar to our youth group. At that moment it felt as though there were no cultural difference, just a different language.

The theme of the retreat is called, “Locura” Which means, “Foolish.” It’s based on 1 Corinthians 1:21. Next Pastor Freddy led into praise. The praise lyrics, although in Spanish, were a blessing. Also, the musicians were extremely well skilled and contemporary. Afterwards he talked about whether we had the fire to be foolish for God. The sermon was all so fast we couldn’t understand. But I hope shortly we can be able to share the sermons we hear.

While waiting to be picked up, we were talking to David, the secretary/tech person here, and he said he would give us a cd of the praise on Monday, but not Sunday because it was a day of rest. His reverence for the Sabbath amazed me as much as Maru had earlier in the day. They are details that, to me, indicate a sincere faith. He also asked us about our house and we mentioned there were a lot of insects. He agreed but said in Spanish, “sin importancia” It’s not important.

That’s encouraging. I’m trying to keep that in mind about the cockroaches. They are really difficult to deal with…I can’t even brush my teeth right now because there are cockroaches in the sink hole.

Well, tomorrow is our first Sunday service at Marangatu. I wish everyone a wonderful and meaningful Sunday.

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