A week ago, the Sisters welcomed us into their house. Normally the Sisters deliver packages to some of poor in the area with the local St. Vincent DePaul society, but they felt it would be too much for us just arriving in that afternoon. So yesterday we worked with Sr. Mary Lee to purchase, carry back to the convent (vehicles are expensive), then separate for the appropriate size of the families. In this post I will try to share how the week went. Here are some pictures of us exploring the
the convent and choosing bedrooms. This is
the living room and where the internet connection is. The kids have been enjoying games like Uno, Scrabble, and Rumikub. Also they have been enjoying the classic black and white Robin Hood TV series that Lora’s mom sent down for Easter. Directly below this room is the Chapel where we are say our morning and night prayers.
We were originally told we would jump right into projects on Monday, but this did not happen, so we took this time to jump right into our Mission Team Retreat. The Scriptural theme I picked was 2 Thes. 3:1-5, especially verse 5, which says: “May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.” and the secondary theme was the gifts of the Spirit as described in Isaiah 11:2-3 “ And the Spirit of the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the LORD.And his delight shall be in the fear of the LORD. He shall not judge by what his eyes see, or decide by what his ears hear;”. Each member old enough on the team, took a gift and was told to study, pray, and be ready to share. (It is hard for me, as I write, to “keep the tense the same” as Lora keeps telling me, especially when some of it has not happened yet and I am writing as if it did.) The team has been doing very well at the sharing.
Later, we decided to see if we could find a path to the sea, Caribbean that is. This was interesting because we did not know where we were going but we could see water and figured if we kept going towards it we would end up at a beach but we ended up walking through one of the places we were told not to go, Shanty Town. We ran into a nice St. Lucian there though, who told us which way to go and to show how nice they are here Lora said I could include his parting words, “Sorry bout the weed, man” oh, Mission life is crazy.
Tuesday: we continued our retreat and also continued adjusting to life here in Vieux-Fort. Later that day Lora and I went back to tell Ms. Beebe her repairs would be delayed and I was able to take a ladder and inspect her roof.
Wednesday: Lora worked at a Charity Shop which is part of the fund raising efforts for a new children’s home that is needed in Vieux-Fort. There is not a place for unwanted or abused children here, they roam the streets. The clothes in the Charity shop have been donated from England, Canada, America, where ever someone has connections in another country. Peter, Mia and I walked up the street and noticed all the street venders. People here take a place on the shady side of the street, set up their stuff(mostly vegetables) sell what they can to make a living. Unemployment is around 25%. Sometimes it is hard not to buy just a little even when we don’t really need it or it is not in our budget. Later I was able to spend time with the children, cook, ect. until the afternoon when Lora came back. She rested for a while, we had some Retreat time, then out to explore the town some more. We found that after 4pm most stores were closed or were closing.
This is the path we walk to go to the Charity Shop, it also leads to the new Health center. So many of the paths we walk on feel like you are walking on someone else’s property. This post is really long already so Wednesday will have to continue on the next post…..