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Showing posts from February, 2012

Soup Kitchen for Seniors

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On Wednesday...

We had lunch at a soup kitchen that is also run by the Salesians.  We were a little late (as usual...hehe) coming from the Kindergarden, and so when we arrived there were already a lot of folks sitting down, enjoying a meal together.  It was such an inviting place to be....a real sense of "community".  

I didn't get a shot of the room as a whole, but here you can see Padre Arturo speaking with this gentleman.  The young boy with him had such smiley eyes...this photo doesn't do him justice :)

This gentleman stood up from the group to welcome us, and to thank us - and all of the Chalice family.  What stuck with me most was how he thanked us on behalf of all of his "hermanos" (brothers) who were there.....it really is a treasure of a community for these folks to gather here, as family, and share a meal together.


Again, one of the ladies who was always with us at mealtimes - she was enjoying herself SO much :D 

And there were kids around …

Hablo ingles?

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From Monday to Thursday, we signed up for service projects.  The options were: construction of one of the homes (supported by our Housing Project), crocheting mats and handbags from plastic bags, sports workshops, visiting families, and teaching English.

I signed up for a variety, so that I could tell you about them here.....but after one day in the English class, I was hooked.  It was such a JOY to spend time with these students....and once I got to know them, I just didn't want to leave!

We had a mix of ages and English levels, but all the students were eager to learn, so we had a lot of fun.  Here's one of our teachers, Cassie :)  You can see some of the words we learned on the board.  It was actually a great opportunity to expand our Spanish vocabulary, and the students had fun teaching us new things too.



These three in the foreground were in my group :D ahhhh I loved their smiles and miss them already!  Here we're having fun learning numbers with a game of Bingo.  We p…

Lunchtime - again!

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There must be an equivalence between gratitude in one's heart and a desire to prepare food  :)

These ladies (and many others!) prepared food for us every few hours it seemed.  We had breakfast where we stayed, but this was soon followed by a mid-morning snack, then lunch (held at a senior's home, pictured here), then a mid-afternoon snack, and finally back to our accommodations for dinner.

The snacks were really more like lunches - traditional and delicious and often served with freshly made juice - and always an abundance of fruit! 


Lunch was more like dinner at home - always soup, main course (with several choices of sides as you can see) and then dessert.  Going back to my packed lunches at work is going to be hard...hehe

These ladies were so kind, and a ton of fun.  Like just about everyone else I met, they loved having their pictures taken - and being silly :)



Here you can see a more complete group of these fantastic women and a few of the tour participants.  It was real…

How is $33/month used for my sponsor child?

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“Your gift helps a child in 3 ways: Education, Nutrition & Health…but HOW that looks is different at every site.  Chalice does not take a cookie-cutter approach.” – this is what I've always told sponsors on the phone when they call our office.  
But I didn’t have any first-hand experience...that is, until Monday!
On Monday, we helped distribute the quarterly benefits for the children of Yapacani and their families.  The summer vacation has ended & before school starts, the children's quarterly benefits included school supplies and food for the family.  Along with the sponsor site team & volunteers, we were about 25 people working in rooms that were packed high with supplies.  It was our job to stack them in piles for the families, who arrived all morning long to pick up their benefits.  I can still hear the children's names being called from the entrance, and seeing them and their families coming in with bags to fill...
Here Mauricio & Ingrid form part of our …

...and Sunday in Yapacani, Bolivia!

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Now, finally what I've been wanting to show you since I started blogging over 3 hours ago (we are so spoiled with our fast internet at home).

I could attempt to tell you about today, but really, my heart cannot contain it - let alone my brain explain it, so I'll just introduce you to some of God's gifts shared with me today....


Fr. Arturo is welcoming "The Canadians from Chalice" en espanol, and Marcos is translating.  Padre Arturo is a Salesian priest, and is the director for this sponsor site, whose patron is Saint Don Bosco.  Behind and to the left of Padre Arturo you can see his partner in crime, Sor Geraldina, dressed in white.  These two exude love wherever I have seen them - truly God's love in action!  Also guilty of this crime is Marcos who is a volunteer with the Saletians, and who radiates God's love to His little ones through a smile that I swear never leaves his face!  He warned me before coming that we may not want to leave...he's been h…

Saturday morning we were in Lima...

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I may have checked my bed for bed bugs....and regretting not bringing flip flops for my shower... but Saturday morning our breakfast was absolutely splendid - and on a terrace in the sunshine at that! The coffee was espresso, with hot water AND hot milk to add, and once I stirred in a heap of deliciously soft brown sugar, I was in cup-o-jo heaven.  For our fresh baked buns, there was double the butter I could spread available - I always find our restaurants at home go a little skimpy - and this butter didn't come processed & packaged in plastic containers, but fresh cut into cubes and served in a dish...mmmm....

Our next stop was the PINIFE sponsor site.  My heart was met with the same love as when we traveled here on the Solidarity Tour in 2011.  When I close my eyes now and think of the children here (& those who care for them so abundantly!), it's Jesus' face I see - and his eyes and his smile are still beaming with this ridiculous love that He has for me, and f…

Friday afternoon we arrived at Pearson airport...

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...some by plane others by car, then started looking around the gate area for each other.  Some familiar faces (we met on the Tour to Peru last year), and some new that we recognized by photos shared in advanced, and some we guessed based on clues from an email address (travelgran1).  A 2-hour delay (something about the electrical board) let us mingle a little longer, then we boarded our plane for an 8 hour flight.  It didn't seem too long -- and I finally got to watch the new version of Footloose ;)  Though I was pretty stoked about this, it was quickly eclipsed by the beauty of the sun shining off the lakes as we flew over the States, and later on by the city lights as we passed over Panama.

Arrived in Lima 2 hours late about midnight, and our faithful team from our PINIFE site was eagerly awaiting us.  Kisses & hugs from Sr. Kela ("The Boss"), Patty (translator), Ziola (social worker), Juan (community project coordinator) and Marcos (teacher). We piled into a sma…

Meet the Families!