Saturday, August 22, 2009

Rafting the Rio Chili

We decided to do something fun after all the volunteers left. We took a short rafting trip just outside of Arequipa on the Rio Chili. Not big water, but there were some Class II/III rapids, with one Class IV. We had a great time. Denise said it was better than any ride at Disneyland. It was hard to believe that we were in the middle of dry dessert country because everything was so green around the river. If anyone comes down to visit, this will be a must do adventure. We want to go again.

25th Anniversary

On August 18th, Denise and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. The team had a tour day, so we spent the afternoon walking around the Plaza de Armas, showing the group good places to go buy souvenirs, get good eats, or a good cup of coffee. After we loaded them on the bus for the evening, we stopped into a small cafĂ© and had a great pizza cooked in a wood fired oven. Then a short taxi ride home and fall into bed exhausted. For our anniversary present, there was no silver or jewelry involved. We are both too practical this year….we decided to buy a new mattress for the bed, because the one furnished with the apartment must be 10-15 years old and is killing our backs. Besides, we took each other to Peru this year

Friday, August 21, 2009

Dedication Day

Sunday was a special day for Extreme and the Zamacola church. There were about 500 people in attendance for the dedication of the Larry and Addie Garmin Missionary Training Center, 40/40 housing, and Zamacola Church. About 300 of those were from outside the church, having been invited at one of our impact events during the last week. Each local church was asked to perform a special for the event. Denise and I were part of a dance group from Alto Libertad Church and performed a traditional Peruvian dance. (I was told to not quite my day job). It was a great celebration and there were people hanging out the windows, standing on the sidewalk looking in, and a standing room crowd. What a great way to jump start a church planting movement.

Tiling All Night Long

We have been making great progress on the church building. The outside has been painted, the dormitories are finished, the lights installed, front door built, and now the floor tile is going down. However, we hit a snag on Friday afternoon, and about 40 tiles had to be removed. This setback cost us about a day. With the building dedication looming just one day away, Dennis and 4 others stayed up all night Friday night and completed the first floor tiling. Just part of the Extreme Adventure!!

Dawn Get to Stay an Extra Week

It was Sunday afternoon, and we are getting ready to take Dawn to the bus station for her trip back to Lima, when she received a text message from the Pastor she is teaching. He told her she should stay in Arequipa another week. He would be coming to Arequipa on Saturday to dedicate the building anyhow, so she should just stay. Yahoooo!! Dawn was really wanting to stay but was afraid to ask. We raced to the bus station to change her ticket to the next Sunday. On the way back home, she was talking with the taxi driver and got to share why she is a Christian and invited him to church. Was this all part of God’s plan? It was fun to have Dawn helping with the impact events. She was asked to lead several of the events for Extreme and was a great help in reaching out to people here in Arequipa.

Group of 80 Arrive for AQP 1

On a bright sunny Friday afternoon, 80 willing and ready volunteers arrived to do construction and impacts here in Arequipa. For the next 12 days, half of them will help work on the Larry and Addie Garmin Missionary Training Center, 40/40 housing, and Zamacola church, while the other half will visit hospitals, a women’s prison, children’s home, show Jesus Films, and pray with people in the Plaza de Armas. What an exciting week.

Dawn Comes to Visit

After a 15 hour bus ride from Lima, Dawn arrived back in Arequipa on August 4th for a short visit with the parents. It was great to get to see her and hear all about what she has been doing in and around Lima. Her English teaching is going well, and the family she is teaching loves her. She enjoyed being here where she knows the city and the streets. She met some friends and went on a rafting trip. She will be in town for the first few days of our next project, where 80 short term volunteers will work for 12 days.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The first team in Arequipa

Our first group of short term volunteers arrived in Arequipa on July 17 and were here for about 12 days, and much was accomplished. Dennis had a construction team of about 14 people who painted, carpeted, pulled electrical wiring, hung lights, and built tables for the new missionary training center, dormitory rooms, and worship center. The Peruvian workers continued with the stucco and plumbing work on the second floor of the worship center. The teams got to eat lunch together and had a good time getting to know each other.

Denise got to get out of the office during the project. She helped a few days at the constrution site keeping me organized. She also got to go out on a community impact project in a new church plant area called Rimero Priale. The team walked around the community with Rico to draw the kids to the arena. They they did face painting, played games, performed puppet skits, and presented the salvation message. Close to 50 children came forward to pray and accept Jesus.

Overall for the 12 days, over 175 children and adults became new Christians and the local churches are beginning to follow up and disciple these new believers. What a great start on our short term projects.