Masses, trekking and painting the football pitch have become the order of the day. Getting to particular communities requires long off-road drives followed by trekking in the midst of the picturesque Cerro San Gil rainforest. On arriving at these isolated communities we are always greatly welcomed by the children and we celebrate mass with the whole community. Mass is centred around songs of praise played by good musical instruments that have been donated.
Fr. Dione delivers the homily which is then translated by Fr. Anton. Despite the sheer poverty and the language barrier one can’t help but feel a sense of peace. Following mass, soft toys brought over from Malta were distributed to the children who held on to them very tight.
Recently after mass, we headed to some more trekking to visit individual families that are isolated from the community. A visit that really touched us was our encounter with a devastatingly poor family in which the father is severely ill due to a recent poisonous snake bite. We prayed over him and gave him the needed antibiotics.
Another touching visit was when we came across two grandparents that look after their physically disabled grandson who has been abandoned by his parents. To help keep the child upright, his back was tied against wooden sticks that make part of the one-roomed hut they reside in.
Usually the rest of our day involves waking up early to paint the football pitch before the boiling sun rises. The pitch is within short walking distance of our dormitories and the local parish church. At the moment the ground is partly done and we really long to see it complete! We have become accustomed to the locals, especially the children, as they hang around us while we paint, at mass and our daily football and volleyball games. Saturdays are a bonus as we organise water games which both children and us really enjoy. Following last Saturday’s water games, some local youths decided to organise a sports day event for next Sunday which will apparently be a tough one. We are eager for this challenge and will keep you updated.
Lots of love to family and friends!